Britain has one of the highest fizzy pop intakes in Europe as worldwide consumption rises.
Brits guzzle an average of 4.4 drinks per person a week, not far off the U.S., which consumes 4.9.
That is double Sweden on 2.2 with Spain on 3.1, Holland 2.9, France 2.8, Germany 2.7, Norway 2, Denmark 1.9, Finland 1.5 and Italy on 1.5.
Only Belgium on 5.2 drinks more than Brits.
And globally, consumption of sugary drinks increased at least 16 percent since 1990 with the worst hotspots being sub-Saharan Africa and the Caribbean.
Sugary drinks are a public health concern and are widely associated with obesity and cardiometabolic diseases, which are among the leading causes of death and years lost to disability globally.
Researchers from the Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy at Tufts University in Massachusetts analyzed the Global Dietary Database for the years 1990, 2005, and 2018.
The study, published in the journal Nature Communications looked at adults in 185 countries and covered soft drinks, energy drinks, fruit juices, punch, lemonade, and aguas frescas that contain over 50 calories per eight ounce serving.
Overall, global intakes were observed to be higher in men than women and in younger versus older people.
Some of the highest sugary drink intakes in the world were among urban, highly educated adults in Sub-Saharan Africa at 12.4 servings per week and in Latin America and the Caribbean at 8.5 servings per week.
At the national level, the countries where people consumed the highest number of sugary drink servings per week were Rwanda on 34.2 and Togo on 29 along with St Vincent and the Grenadines in the Caribbean on 28.2.
India, China, and Bangladesh were all on 0.2 each.
Doctoral student and first author Laura Lara-Castor, said: “We were struck by the wide variations by world regions in 2018.
“Soda can reach the farthest places, and in countries where clean water is less accessible, these beverages might be the only thing available to drink at times.
“These results suggest that more work is needed, especially around successful interventions such as marketing regulations, food labeling, and soda taxes.”
While the study did not identify the reasons for these trends, the researchers hypothesize the changes could be related to the effectiveness of targeted marketing tactics from the soda and food industry the association of Western diets with high status.
Dariush Mozaffarian, a cardiologist and Jean Mayer Professor of Nutrition at the Friedman School, added: “Sugar-sweetened beverage intake has increased in the past few decades despite efforts to decrease their appeal.
“Some populations are especially vulnerable, and our findings provide evidence to inform the need and design of national and more targeted policies to reduce their intake worldwide.”
The researchers say more work is needed to assess sugary drink intake in children and adolescents, to measure the impact of soda taxes globally, and to better understand differences across each country’s subpopulations.
The team also wants to explore how other sweet beverages, such as milk, coffee and teas, factor into consumption habits.
Produced in association with SWNS Talker
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