By Annabelle Jimenez
On Thursday, August 23, the New York Post published an article with the misleading headline, “City Council wants to ban soda from fast-food kids’ meals.” This headline is not reflective of what the proposed legislation intends to achieve.
The New York City bill is similar to other policies being passed across the country. It’s just common sense: the drink that comes with a kids’ meal at a restaurant should be healthy. Eating out used to be a rare treat but has now become a daily occurrence. Half of meals in the United States are purchased outside of home and children get an average of 25 percent of their calories from restaurant foods and beverages. In other words, the drinks kids get at a restaurant can have a big impact. This bill supports parents’ efforts to give their kids a healthier future.
A few major restaurant chains have already agreed to serve healthier beverages with their kids’ meals voluntarily, but most chain and independent restaurants continue to push soda on our kids. Beverages are responsible for nearly half of added sugars in kids’ diets. We should be making it easier, not harder, for parents to raise healthy and strong kids. As a mom and someone who has faced the burden of living at an unhealthy weight, reducing my son’s sugar consumption is a priority.
I stand with the all New York City families who are calling on the City Council to promote health by reducing sugary drink consumption. Let’s follow the lead of Baltimore, California and others and pass this bill!