In a significant setback for fitness drink brands, the central government has instructed all e-commerce platforms to remove various beverages, including the popular supplement Bournvita, from the ‘healthy drinks’ category.

The advisory issued by the Commerce and Industry Ministry focused on the blatant use of the term health drinks. Referring to an inquiry by the National Commission for Protection of Child Rights or NCPCR, the Ministry underlined that there is “no 'health drink' defined under FSS Act 2006, rules and regulations submitted by FSSAI and Mondelez India Food Pvt. Ltd."

Mondelez-owned Cadbury has always claimed it is packed with several important nutrients like vitamins A, C, D, iron, copper, and selenium to strengthen your immunity levels. “We have always called out 'Helps with the healthy functioning of the immune system' on the back of our pack for several years (even before the Covid-19 pandemic)," Cadbury said in an Instagram post.

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What was the Bournvita controversy?

Last year, a social media influencer locked horns with the confectionary giant questioning the high amounts of sugar used in the drink. Revant Himatsingka shared a video on Instagram claiming that every 100 gm of Bournvita contains 50 gm of sugar.

Mondelez has claimed that the sugar in Bournvita is always well below the recommended daily sugar limit for children.

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However, NCPCR then asked Cadbury to withdraw all its misleading advertisements, packaging, and labels. The instruction came after it received a complaint alleging that Bournvita brands itself as a health drink as it improves ‘children’s growth and development' despite being loaded with sugar.

Later, Bournvita clarified that every serving of 20 gm of their concoction contains 7.5 grams of added sugar, which is approximately one and a half teaspoons - which is less than the daily recommended intake limits of sugar for children.

However, according to news reports, the brand then reduced the added sugar content by nearly 15 per cent.

How does sugar affect growing children?

According to experts, growing children need ample amounts of protein and healthy fats for the development of their muscles, brain, and nervous system.

However, high sugar intake raises the risk of obesity and chronic diseases like diabetes, heart disease, and cancer, especially the kids grow older. Doctors say too much sugar can cause joint pain, gout, and fatty liver disease, apart from obesity and excess weight gain.

Side effects of too much sugar

Weight gain

According to experts, sugar leads to weight gain, as it is high in calories and if it is not used as energy, it gets stored as certain fats within children’s bodies. These fats then get linked to dangerous health issues like heart disease, diabetes, and even certain types of cancers.

A high-sugar diet also contributes to resistance of leptin - a hormone that helps energy regulation and reduces hunger. Both insulin and leptin resistance are linked to weight gain.

Tooth decay

High sugar intake also increases the risk of tooth decay, which can be painful and distressing as it leads to infections.

Doctors say poor oral hygiene also affects your teeth in adulthood.

Brain development

Eating too much sugar can also influence the brain development of kids. The brain is fueled by glucose and needs the right amount to be able to perform cognitive functions like thinking, learning, and memory.

According to studies, excessive sugar intake leads to depression and anxiety.

Sleep issues

A high-sugar diet also causes sleep issues like insomnia, which hurts a child’s ability to think and learn.

2024-04-15T04:04:35Z dg43tfdfdgfd