Sodas and other sugary drinks are really empty calories. They do nothing to satisfy your appetite and it’s very easy to just keep on drinking them. Before you know it, you’ve sipped or slurped several hundred calories with no nutritional value. And those extra calories begin collecting as fat. It’s thought that Big Gulps and other super-sized drinks are a major contributor to America’s growing obesity problem.
Enter New York City Mayor Mike Bloomberg. He outlawed smoking just about anywhere in the city. He forced fast food and chain restaurants to list calorie counts and other nutritional information. He banned trans fats. Now, he’s barring restaurants, theaters, arenas and stadiums from selling any sugary drinks larger than 16 ounces. Read more.
- The Mayor says the new rule won’t prevent you from drinking more than 16 ounces. You’ll just have to get a refill or order another drink. Does that make the super-size drink ban a charade or will it encourage people to drink less sugar?
- Banning smoking in public places is one thing. Other people have to breathe the air. But you are not bothering anyone else when you order a Big Gulp, so why should a city be able to say how large a drink you can have?
- Opponents of the ban wonder where this will end. Should the city be restricting the portion size of food you can order in a restaurant?
- Health officials argue that an overweight or obese population affects all of us through the cost and availability of health care. So where does the freedom to choose what’s appropriate for oneself meet concern for the greater good?