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Studies have shown that Latino kids consume more sugary sweet beverages than their non-white peers and over-consumption of sugary beverages has also been linked to health risks like diabetes and obesity. When obesity rates are rising and more than one in three Latino kids are predicted to have diabetes in the near future, healthier options are a must for kids menu’s.
Helping to assist parents and kids on making the easy choice the healthy choice when dining out, DineEquity, owner of Applebee’s and IHOP restaurants have decided to completely remove the option of soda on their kids’ menus. This is the first family-dining restaurant to promote and incorporate this change throughout their national chain of restaurants.
Organizations like Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI), MomsRising, the UConn Rudd Center for Food Policy and Obesity (Rudd Center) and the Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility , along with many other organizations support have made these changes possible. They have worked together advocating for healthier options on kids’ menus and are now asking Chili’s to change as well. Using social media efforts and asking through a direct letter to the company, these organizations hope to encourage healthier options for all kids and not allow unhealthy food marketing to be directed at kids in any way.
Many Fast-food chains have removed sodas off their menus as well including Burger King, Subway, McDonald’s, Wendy’s, Panera and Dairy Queen.
All family restaurants should take notice of the health risks associated with sugary sweet beverages like soda, especially since kids who consume these beverages are more likely to be overweight and show increased negative health risks, Harvard studies show. Even persons who drink diet soda are still at risk of diabetes, whereas those who drink tea, coffee or water are at a lower rate of developing diabetes by at least 14 percent, reports a recent study.
More is still being done on efforts to lower soda consumption in cities and restaurants across the nation, but DineEquity feels their impact of removing soda’s from kids’ menus will make a huge impact on families that choose to eat at one of their many restaurants across the nation. Shareholders of DineEquity have applauded hoping the decision will have a positive impact on children’s health.
To learn more about how you can help restaurants to stop unhealthy marketing towards kids, click here.