In the past 20 years, obesity rates have doubled in the United States. In Boston, about 54% of adults and 40% of Boston Public School students are overweight or obese. Obesity is a very serious health issue that can lead to Type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and some types of cancer. Numerous studies have linked the increase in obesity to the consumption of sugary beverages.
As part of the REACH Obesity and Hypertension Demonstration Project’s healthy beverage initiative, Sugar Smarts was re-launched in July 2014. A three-year agreement funded by the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the project aims to reduce health inequities in obesity and hypertension for Black and Latino communities of Boston, especially in the neighborhoods of Mattapan, Dorchester, Roxbury, Hyde Park, and East Boston, where the prevalence of obesity and hypertension are the highest.
Through the healthy beverage initiative, we will raise awareness of the health impacts of sugary drinks and encourage all Bostonians to consume healthier alternatives.