Is America Headed for a Soft Drink Ban?

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Is America headed towards healthy with a nationwide soft drink ban ?  I'd say not in a million years, but things are definitely changing.  Yahoo! News reports "with tax proposals, looming bans, DIY soda machines, and consumers' increasingly health consciousness on the rise, soda companies could be entering a dry spell."  The article goes on to state that soda revenues have decreased 40% over the last decade.

I think Michael Bloomberg, NYC major, kick started this movement last year when he called for a ban on super sized sodas.  The day is quickly approaching.  After March 12, soft drinks bigger than 16 ounces won't be available in NYC, at least in certain businesses, like restaurants and concession stands.  It seems like other places are taking notice and want to follow with a similar ban, or mandatory downsizing, at least.

soft drink ban

I remember as a kid, my family would always get a couple of those huge "Big Gulp" like cups at a convenience store and then proceed to pour into cups so we could share at a great price.  Does anyone even really drink a Big Gulp by themselves? Maybe so…probably so…but here's my question.  Why don't we insist that companies work on making their soft drinks healthier rather than making consumers buy their soft drinks elsewhere so they can get the amount that they want?  You KNOW that this "soft drink ban" doesn't deter many people from getting exactly what they want, but options would be nice.  Just a few days ago, we were at a Dallas Mavericks' basketball game and we shared a soda because there weren't any other options.  Maybe it was because I hadn't had soda in such a long time, but within 5 minutes of my first sip, I developed a raging head ache and just felt ill.  Funny since I used to use soda to relieve my headches. 

I know, "soda" and "healthy" are very rarely used in the same sentence, and I don't think there will ever be a "healthy soda," but companies could start making them healthier and less horrible for Americans' health, you know.  Let's look at why sodas are so unhealthy.  First of all, almost all sodas contain high fructose corn syrup, which is a genetically modified sweetener that the body processes differently and thus can cause a plethora of health problems.  Some companies do sweeten some of their beverages with plain ol' sugar, but when the majority of sugar comes from GMO sugar beets, I am not sure that's a better bet.  Then there are the preservatives and colorings in soda which have been linked to health problems, as well.  And if you want to be eco-friendly, all of those bottles and waste from the soda industry has really polluted the Earth.  

My opinion is that there are LOTS of Americans who would lose their jobs if there was a nationwide soda ban, and I'm sure lots of jobs have been lost with the decrease in soda consumption, and that, of course, is not good.  And I'm also positive that the majority of Americans aren't going to stop drinking soda.  So why don't companies just change the way they make soda instead of trying to make a zillion different flavors and sizes to entice the general population?  I'm positive that a TRULY "healthier" soda (not just one that adds fiber or "vitamins"..yuck!) would be a great seller amongst Americans who want their soda but want it to be free of yucky stuff.  Companies like Zevia are stepping it up, and even Soda Stream is a start, although most Soda Stream syrups still contain things like colorings and artificial sweeteners, even if they don't contain HFCS.

So what's the answer?  Does your family drink sodas?  Would you like a healthier option or would you support a soft drink ban?




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Gena is the mom of three boys, ages 7, 5, and 2. She is the wife of a great man, a Christian, blogger, and former kindergarten teacher turned stay-at-home mom. They live in the Dallas/ Ft. Worth, Texas area.


  1. I would NOT support a soft drink ban because I think it is crazy to take someone's choice of what they want to drink away – especially if it isn't really harming anyone else. Having said that, we don't drink much soda in this house at all, except for Ginger Ale. We love that!


  2. I would not support a ban. I feel this will lead to price gouging, supply and demand the whole bootleg therory.

    We live in the USA, we have the right to make our own choiced be they good or bad.

    I drink soda maybe once a week.

  3. When I was growing up, we did not have soft drinks in our home. I can't remember the last time I had one, but do know that it was a Hansen's All Natural Rootbeer. My son is 3.5 and he's never had one, he's also never had fast-food.

    Americans overall to do not take responsibility for their actions, maybe Bloomberg is going overboard in eliminating certain sizes. It seems like a wasted effort because you can order more than one to drink as much as you want. Perhaps he's trying to get people to open their eyes to the fact that they're not making the best choices for their health.  Sure, it is cheaper today to drink soda & eat fast food, but in 10-15 years when your insurance skyrockets and people need daily medications because of the toxins they've been pouring into their bodies for years – will it still feel cheaper? No, because the rest of us will be paying for it in increased insurance premiums.

    Asking companies to make soda healthier isn't going to happen. It is cheaper for them to use chemicals to create their products than to use actual ingredients you can find in nature!

    Great post, thanks for getting me thinking this early in the morning!

  4. I think Bloomberg has WAY overstepped the rights of a Mayor in trying to expand this ban on an uncontrolled substance state-wide. I am only surprised that either the soft drink companies or the convenience store chains have not filed suit to have these bans overturned. This is Big Brother tactics and I am shocked that the City of New York has allowed this ordinance or whatever it is they call it in their city, to be instituted at all. I thought New Yorkers were a more independent lot than that. I cannot imagine what is going on in that city for them to allow this micromanagement of the lives of responsible adults. And whether you and your readers drink soda or not is beside the point. It isn't happening in your state unless you live in New York.

  5. I would not support a soda ban. I do know it's not good for me but I do like the choice to grab for a soda every now and again if I want to. Want to ban something, they should ban cigarettes. That's my opinion. 

  6. I would also not support a ban.  I think it is up to the person drinking it to make an educated choice.  I understand the reasoning behind it but I just don't think it's a place for the goverment to be in our business.  There are more important issues at hand that money should be spent on. 

  7. I do not support a ban.  Unfortunately, some people don't care about their health, put still insist that others foot the bill for their health costs.

  8. I will never believe it's the governments right to take over our personal responsibility. Some people say it's just a soda but one day it's just a soda and the next day it's cake, it's sugar, it's salt… what next? Just tired of it.

  9. Jenny K says:

    I wouldn't support a ban either. I think it's more important to educate people to choose better options for their family and that it's okay to enjoy a soda in MODERATION. I think when you ban something it just makes it more appealing and we don't want that!

  10. We don't drink soda, I think it's just liquid junk LOL… but i think a ban is the wrong thing to do. It's our body and we have the right to drink whatever we want.

  11. I don't think a ban would happen or be very effective. I don't drink alcohol, or do anything else that's 'bad' – don't even have much for desserts, so I am okay with having a soda every once in a while. 

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