The problems with Michelle Obama telling us to drink more water
Forget Fritos, Camels, and lazing around on the couch: Your problem is dehydration. At least, that seems to be the message behind the First Lady’s public health campaign fun announcement to get Americans guzzling more H2O. SOME Americans don’t drink enough water, so we should ALL drink more!
Sounds nice in theory, but it’s about as toothless as a geriatric jellyfish. (Or, really, a jellyfish of any age.) Writes the Atlantic:
The problem is … that there is no recommended daily amount of water. If we knew how much we should be drinking, and it turned out we weren’t drinking enough, then yes, tell us to drink more. If they were telling us to replace soda in our diets with water, that would also be reasonable and potentially productive. They’re explicitly not doing that, though.
… Even though that’s exactly what they SHOULD be saying. The AP notes:
The consumer advocacy group Center for Science in the Public Interest said the message should be to drink less soda.
“Soda and other sugar drinks are one of the biggest promoters of obesity and diabetes, and advocating drinking more actual water and less sugar water is one of the most important messages that ‘Let’s Move’ could deliver,” said Michael Jacobson, the center’s executive director.
So why no soda message? For starters, beverage companies would be piiiiiissed. Instead, urging people to drink more water — rather than less corn syrup — is great news for companies like Coke (which owns Dasani) and Pepsi (Aquafina). Everybody wins! Corporations win!
I can easily think of five health recommendations better than drink more water (and I bet you can too): eat more fruits and veggies, get enough sleep, exercise, limit your red meat, and DRINK LESS SODA.
What would you say instead of “drink more water”?
Why ‘Drink More Water’?, The Atlantic.
Michelle Obama 'Drink Up' Campaign: First Lady Wants People To Drink More Water, Associated Press.