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Limit Sugar-sweetened Beverages/Community

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Action steps to increase access to healthy beverages in the community include:

  1. Increase access to free, safe drinking water.

    Safe, clean drinking water is not always available in rural communities or communities with dilapidated water systems. States can ensure that residence have access to safe, clean drinking water by providing funding to communities to upgrade their water supply systems.

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Action steps to limit unhealthy beverages in the community include:

  1. Decrease availability of unhealthy beverages in public service venues.

    Consumption of sugar-sweetened beverages is associated with higher daily caloric intake and greater risk of obesity. Policies that restrict the availability of sugar sweetened beverages might discourage the consumption of high-caloric beverages by community residents. Communities can limit the amount of sugar-sweetened beverages available for sale in public venues.


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  2. Implement zoning designed to limit the amount and location of mobile vending establishments and fast food restaurants.

    Limit the number of mobile vending and fast food restaurants in your community by establishing new zoning laws that promote healthy food zones especially near schools, community centers, libraries, and other public venues children and family frequent.

    Recommended by: Institute of Medicine (IOM) Report: Local Government Actions to Prevent Childhood Obesity


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Action steps for point of purchase in the community include:

  1. Require menu labeling in restaurants to provide consumers with calorie information on menus and menu boards.

    Informed consumers are more likely to make healthier food choices. By requiring that all quick service restaurants include the calorie and fat content of menu items on menus and menu boards, states can help consumers make better and more informed decisions about the food that they are ordering.


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  2. Regulate smaller portion size and low-fat, low-calorie options in public service venues.

    Portion sizes have increased dramatically over the past ten years which contributes to increased calorie consumption for people, especially children, who regularly eat out. Communities should regulate that food vendors in their communities must provide appropriate portion sizes and include proper descriptions (eg, a medium-sized sugar-containing drink should be 6-8 oz)


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  3. Offer incentives (e.g. recognition or endorsement) for restaurants that promote healthier options.

    Aside from financial incentives, communities can recognize restaurants that provide healthier menu options to consumers (like serving nonfat milk, or apples instead of French fries in meals). This recognition can encourage restaurants to serve healthier foods and beverages. It can also help consumers to choose restaurants that are family-friendly and offer healthier options.


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  4. Create incentive and recognition programs encouraging grocery and convenience stores to reduce point-of-sale marketing of calorie dense soft drinks and attractively positioning healthier drink options.

    Aside from financial incentives, communities can recognize grocery and convenience stores that reduce point of sale marketing of unhealthy product to consumers and actively promote healthier choices. This recognition can encourage consumers to choose grocery stores that promote healthier options.

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Action steps to change relative pricing in the community include:

  1. Implement a tax strategy to discourage consumption of beverages with minimal nutritional value.

    Localities can tax sugar-sweetened beverages to increase revenue while discouraging consumption of unhealthy options.


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Action steps to develop media campaigns in the community include:

  1. Develop media campaigns to combat the consumption of sugar-sweetened beverages and promote healthy beverages.

    A media campaign aimed at encouraging healthy beverage choices can encourage children and families to choose healthier beverage options.


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