In response to today’s release of the 2015 U.S. Dietary Guidelines for Americans, the American Beverage Association issued the following statement:

“We appreciate the extensive work in developing the 2015 U.S. Dietary Guidelines for Americans. We fully support the goal to help Americans achieve and maintain a healthy weight. America’s beverage companies are doing their part to help people manage their calorie and sugar intake by providing a wide range of beverage choices, a variety of package sizes and clear, easy-to-read calorie information – on package and at point of purchase – to help them make the choice that's right for them. With our Balance Calories Initiative, we are working toward a common goal of reducing beverage calories in the American diet. This is a meaningful initiative that will have significant real world impact in helping people reduce their consumption of calories and sugar from beverages.”

Additional Background:


America’s beverage companies are committed to helping address obesity and supporting consumers’ efforts to improve their health and wellbeing. Most recently, in partnership with the Alliance for a Healthier Generation, the beverage companies announced a nationwide initiative to reduce beverage calories in the American diet. To do so, they will leverage their marketing, innovation and distribution strength to provide consumers more reduced-calorie and smaller-portion choices, calorie information at every point of purchase, and visible calls to action to remind consumers about calories and the importance of balancing what they eat, drink and do. With a shared goal of reducing beverage calories consumed per person by 20 percent nationally by 2025, this is the single-largest voluntary effort by an industry to help fight obesity. In addition, America’s leading beverage companies voluntarily reduced calories from beverages sold in schools by 90 percent through the national School Beverage Guidelines. In support of First Lady Michelle Obama’s “Let’s Move!” campaign, America’s beverage companies announced the Clear on Calories initiative, voluntarily placing clear calorie labels on the front of every bottle, can and pack they produce. The ABA and its member companies also were part of Mrs. Obama’s launch of “Drink Up!,” the initiative of the Partnership for a Healthier America to promote consumption of water. When it comes to energy drinks, leading energy drink makers voluntarily place advisory statements on energy drink packaging stating that energy drinks are not recommended for children. They also have voluntarily pledged not to market these products to children or sell them in K-12 schools. These guidelines and more are noted in the ABA Guidance on the Responsible Labeling and Marketing of Energy Drinks.


On High-Intensity/Low- and No-Calorie Sweeteners:

Low- and no-calorie beverages offer consumers great-tasting options with fewer or no calories. The Dietary Guidelines reaffirm the safety of high-intensity – or low- and no-calorie – sweeteners approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, as well as their usefulness in reducing calorie intake. As recently as last year, a review of the body of science which was published in the International Journal of Obesity found that these ingredients, as well as the beverages that contain them, can be an effective part of an overall weight loss and/or weight management program, and are an effective tool to reduce both sugar intake and caloric intake. A 2014 survey of National Weight Control Registry members and the CHOICE (Choose Healthy Options Consciously Everyday) randomized control trials (RCT) documented the benefits of these ingredients for overall weight management. More recently, a study published in the journal Obesity that looked at more than 300 people affirmed that diet beverages are an effective tool as part of a weight loss program. Many major health organizations have affirmed the benefits of low- and no-calorie sweeteners in balancing consumers’ carbohydrate and energy intake, including the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, the American Heart Association and the American Diabetes Association.

On Caffeine and Energy Drinks:

Importantly, caffeine safety is supported by a long history of consumption and by extensive clinical and nonclinical studies. The safety of caffeine has been established by health authorities and international organizations worldwide with their conclusions applying to caffeine from all sources, including energy drinks. The Dietary Guidelines confirm that the vast majority of the population is consuming amounts of caffeine well within safe levels, and that average intakes of caffeine by children and adolescents are low. The Guidelines state that, for adults, between 70-90 percent of all caffeine intake is from coffee and tea, and that the majority of Americans consume substantially less than 400mg of caffeine per day. Energy drinks contain about the same amount of caffeine as home-brewed coffee and significantly less caffeine than a similarly-sized coffeehouse coffee.

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The American Beverage Association is the trade association representing the broad spectrum of companies that manufacture and distribute non-alcoholic beverages in the United States.