ProMedica to Stop Serving Sugar-Sweetened Beverages
posted on: 01/16/2013TOLEDO, OHIO, Jan. 16, 2013 – As part of ProMedica’s Mission to improve the health and well-being of its employees, patients and the community, all ProMedica campuses – in Ohio and Michigan – will no longer serve or sell sugar-sweetened beverages effective Feb. 1, 2013.
ProMedica Wellness Medical Director Matt Roth, MD, says ProMedica is not alone in its efforts to encourage people to consume healthier drinks.
"The evidence is becoming overwhelming that sugar-sweetened beverages are hazardous to our health, contributing not only to obesity and diabetes, but to an increased risk for heart disease as well," says Dr. Roth. The elimination of sugar-sweetened beverages in hospitals and health systems is a national trend in health care. These drinks are a significant source of empty calories and have little to no nutritional value.
ProMedica defines sugar-sweetened beverages as those to which sugars, such as high fructose corn syrup or sucrose, have been added. They include regular soft drinks, fruit drinks that are not 100% juice, sports drinks, tea and coffee drinks, and energy drinks. ProMedica will continue to serve and sell water, low-fat or non-fat milk, unsweetened coffee and teas, 100% fruit and vegetable juices, and diet soft drinks.
The sugar-sweetened beverages policy, which was developed with guidance and support from members of ProMedica’s medical staff, applies to all ProMedica sites, including: hospital cafeterias, cafés and gift shops; vending machines; patient and family food menus; and catering. Employees and visitors will be able to bring in these beverages for their personal use. Sugar-sweetened beverages will be available for patients only if deemed clinically necessary and ordered by a dietitian or bedside nurse.
Toledo, Ohio-based ProMedica is a mission-based, not-for-profit healthcare organization formed in 1986. ProMedica has more than 14,300 employees and nearly 1,700 physicians with more than 400 healthcare providers employed by ProMedica Physicians. Its 11 hospitals and more than 306 facilities offer comprehensive diagnostic, medical and surgical specialties in heart and vascular, oncology, orthopaedics, neurology, and women and pediatric services. ProMedica’s mission is to improve health and well-being, with a strong focus on wellness and clinical excellence, as well as innovative, community advocacy programs that address health-related issues such as hunger and obesity.