Health reform is taking some bold steps for the better in New York City as Mayor Michael Bloomberg announces further plans to improve health for city residents. The latest news from the Mayor’s office is the prospect of large sized sodas being banned from local restaurants, movie theaters and street side food carts in a bid to curtail the obesity pandemic that the Mayor claims is the only health problem to be on the increase in the city. As an independent risk factor for heart disease, hypertension and hypercholesterolemia, obesity really is the city’s biggest problem and needs more people with the relevant skills and New York ACLS certification to help join the fight.
Sugar-loaded soft drinks have been identified as a major contributor to the obesity pandemic, and while the proposed ban will enforce that soft drinks larger than 16 ounces cannot be sold, the news has been met with mixed reactions by the local community. While health advocates are in favor of the proposition, some feel the legislation would impact on their individual rights. 16 ounces is still a lot more than what the American Heart Association recommends, as three 12 ounce sodas a week is the maximum people are advised to consume.
Recent research released by Harvard has also highlighted the link between sugar-sweetened soft drinks and the likelihood of heart attack. Statistics have indicated that one standard soft drink a day increases a person’s chances of heart attack by 20%. The more the person drinks, the higher their risk becomes, with two cans a day increasing the likelihood of heart attack by 42% and three cans boosting that risk to 69%. While this particular study did not find a correlation with artificially sweetened drinks and heart attacks, other studies have found a link, and health groups are lobbying for people to change to drinking water, the healthiest beverage for heart health.
Some critics have knocked the idea, believing that people should be able to make their own lifestyle choices and raised concern over the notion of introducing prohibition, as it infringes on human rights. Alternatives to implement legislation that limits the amount of calories contained in sugar-sweetened soft drinks, as well as an incentive for companies in the form of tax deductions should they meet the designated benchmarks has been proposed as a more productive way to alleviate the problem, without encroaching on individual rights.
Hitting consumers where it hurts the most, in the pocket, has also been thrown into the mix. A survey conducted at Harvard’s Brigham and Women’s Hospital, where prices of sodas were increased with a tax, resulted in overall sales declining by 26% and boosting sales of cheaper beverages. Your ACLS certification in New York has a lot of potential to benefit the campaigns and awareness of heart disease that is currently being generated.