We live in a culture of grande lattes, sports drinks, exotic-sounding bottled juices, and other high-calorie drinks. Fancy coffee chains abound, as do refrigerator cases stocked with icy soft drinks; nearly everywhere you turn, you see people walking or driving with one of these beverages in hand. We rate cars by the number of cup holders, which now come heated and cooled. Without question, we’re a nation of high-calorie beverage guzzlers, and though these drinks may taste good, we’re paying a hidden cost.
One in every five calories in our American diet comes from beverages. When we were a thinner country, “beverages” meant water, tea, and coffee. Frozen blended drinks had not been invented yet. Based on scientific observation alone, soft drinks are guilty of contributing to the fattening of America. Soft-drink consumption has increased almost threefold in the past 20 years. Can you guess what else has radically increased over the past two decades? That’s right: the size of our derrières.