THE amount of soft drinks consumed by Malaysians is increasing daily. According to a recent news report, about 1,000 canned drinks are consumed every minute in Malaysia. Soft drinks contain approximately three to 20 teaspoons of sugar. Most of them are nothing but carbonated, coloured, acidified, flavoured, sweetened water that spell danger to health.
They are also a prime source of extra calories that can contribute to weight gain.
Once thought as harmless refreshment, soft drinks have come under scrutiny for their contribution to the development of Type 2 diabetes, heart diseases and other chronic conditions.
Some scientists say fructose sugar in some soft drinks acts like fat.
Unlike other sugars, which are broken down by other body organs, fructose heads straight to the liver and is deposited as fat.
The high phosphorous level in soft drinks inhibits bone growth. Studies show that children who frequently drink sodas are more vulnerable to broken bones, childhood obesity and diabetes.
The question may arise as to what drinks should be served as alternatives, especially during festive seasons. If Malaysians could make some effort to revive traditional recipes, we could make our own soft drinks which would be healthier and cheaper.
These traditional drinks are not only tasty and refreshing but also contain medicinal value.