Food activists continue to wage war against beverages in the same misleading manner that they have with other things we enjoy like coffee, eggs, butter, meat, Chinese food - you name it.

Experts from the United States, Mexico and Canada recently rose up to take a stand against this latest attempt by activists to force-feed on the world the way they eat and drink. Some experts pointed out how activists are contradicting known science in their ideological campaign.

"Sugar isn't the enemy, the problem is calories," said Dr. John L. Sievenpiper, a physician at St. Michael's Hospital in Toronto, Canada. "Until now, there has been a sugar-centric approach to the problem, making sugar the focus of the debate."

Sievenpiper was among several experts speaking at a forum in Mexico City on issues such as obesity and diabetes that was organized by the Mexican branch of the International Life Sciences Institute. ILSI is a non-profit organization that promotes scientific research and dialogue worldwide.

Sievenpiper pointed out that the demonizing of sugar is not going to improve public health. He said there is little evidence to link sugar-sweetened beverages to the appearance of diabetes or hypertension, according to the Spanish news agency EFE. Recent studies suggest food products like potato chips, meat or fried foods contribute more to the onset of obesity, reported EFE. Participants in the forum agreed that researchers need to look at the entire diet to tackle obesity.

Soda does not make you gain weight, calories do. That is why it is critical to look at the entire diet when managing weight. Non-alcoholic beverages make up just 6 percent of the calories average Americans take in daily. A strategy on obesity that focuses on only beverages ignores 94% of the diet.

Our member companies are stepping up to help. They deliver many options, with calories and without, so people can make the choices that are right for them and their families to achieve balance. Choice, along with education about maintaining balance, is a realistic approach to tackling obesity.