It’s a new decade, but the self-anointed “food police” at the so-called Center for Science in the “Public Interest” are up to their old tricks. Today CSPI revealed a letter that it’s sending to the Food and Drug Administration, begging the agency to take action on a previous CSPI request for warning labels on sugary drinks. The FDA has (thankfully) ignored CSPI for five years.
The FDA ought to reply with this message: It’s time to get with the times. Despite CSPI’s insinuations that sugary drinks are a scourge among younger Americans, science has shed a little light on the matter since the group’s first ridiculous petition. Along with general questions of “white hat bias” in studies looking at soda and obesity, a 2009 study in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition found no association between sugary drink consumption and weight gain in adolescents during a five-year period. That built upon similar findings in a 2008 review in the same journal.
Say it with us, all together now: Calories are calories. A calorie in one food is no more fattening than a calorie in another, a point made recently by a nutrition professor who went on a “Twinkie diet” and lost nearly 30 pounds. Instead of selectively pillorying specific foods, a more accurate label than what CSPI proposes might be: “This food contains calories. Eating too many calories may result in weight gain.”
Don’t most people already know that?
In the meantime, here’s a reminder of our own warning label—for CSPI. If only we could attach it to each of the group’s press releases this year…