PIRE Publication - A review of the literature on policies directed at the youth consumption of sugar sweetened beverages

Sugar sweetened beverages (SSB) constitute a large percentage of energy consumed by youth. This paper reviews the literature on school nutrition policies and price interventions directed at youth SSB consumption. In addition to considering the direct effect of policies on SSB consumption, we provide an overview of the literature on how SSB consumption affects total energy intake (TEI) and BMI, as well as on how TEI affects BMI. By considering each of these links, we attempted to gauge the effect of policies directed at SSB consumption, as well as highlight areas that merit future research. We found that school nutrition and price policies reduce SSB consumption and that reduced SSB consumption is associated with a reduction in energy intake that can influence BMI. Policies directed at SSB consumption can play an important role in reducing youth overweight and obesity.

Levy, David T.
Friend, Karen B.
Wang, Y. Claire