CEO experiment reveals what happens
after drinking soft drink
A graphic new television advertisement highlighting the serious health effects of regular sugary drink
consumption will hit Victorian screens this weekend as part of a campaign
encouraging people to cut back.
The new LiveLighter advertisement
pictures a man reaching for a sugary drink from a fridge in a convenience store.
The camera then takes the viewer inside the man's body for a graphic look at
the toxic fat surrounding his vital organs.
In launching the advertisement, Cancer
Council Victoria CEO Todd Harper this morning guzzled a 600ml bottle of cola – containing 16
teaspoons of sugar – while a doctor monitored the impact on his blood sugar and
Mr Harper said
the results from the experiment speak for themselves: "Sugary drinks such as soft drinks,
energy drinks and sports drinks contain dangerously high levels of sugar which,
as I experienced first-hand today, cause sudden and quite significant changes
to your body.
"Within minutes my blood sugar level
spiked and I started to feel jittery, but before long my energy levels dropped.
For the 1 in 5 Victorian adults1 who consume sugary drinks on
a daily basis, this can do serious damage to their vital organs over the long
term. The excess sugar in these drinks can turn to toxic fat and increase your
risk of developing type 2 diabetes, heart disease and some cancers.
"We want people to understand
that there is nothing sweet about sugary drinks."
Heart Foundation Victoria's
Director of Cardiovascular Health Programs Kellie-Ann Jolly said the advertisement
was part of LiveLighter's quest to show Victorians exactly how much sugar is in
popular drinks and encourage them to choose water instead.
"Sugary drink consumption is
contributing significantly to our obesity crisis, with the average Australian soft
drink consumer drinking the equivalent to one 375ml can of sugary drink a day2 – that's 14.6kg of sugar per
year that our bodies don't need," Ms Jolly said.
"Research has shown that consuming
a can of sugary drink a day can lead to 6.75kg weight gain in one year, increasing
the risk of obesity and weight-related health concerns.
"For decades we've been bombarded
by sugary drinks advertising - now for the first time Victorians will see an
advertisement about the serious threat regular sugary drink consumption poses
to our health."
Victorian Minister for Health,
Jill Hennessy, said the Government wants to see Victorians live, eat and drink
"There are small changes we
can make to our diets and our lifestyles which can improve our long-term health
and wellbeing. Even, just one or two less soft drinks a day or a week will make
"I encourage organisations,
businesses and workplaces right across Victoria to think about how we can all
make it easier for our family, friends, staff and customers to make healthier
A 30-second TV advertisement and a supporting 15-second TV advertisement will air in Victoria and
the ACT from Sunday 11 October. The ads will run in metro and regional areas
for six weeks. The campaign also includes supporting cinema, radio and digital
advertising in metro and regional areas. A third TV advertisement tailored for
Aboriginal communities will air nationally on National Indigenous Television
(NITV) for six weeks from Sunday 11 October.
Available for interview: Kylie Charlton
Kylie, 41, knows how a sugary
drink addiction can weigh you down, physically and mentally.
four years the Melbourne real estate agent drank at least one can of Coca-Cola
a day, until November last year when she decided enough was enough and gave up.
"I felt addicted
to Coca-Cola, addicted to the sugar. When I stopped drinking it, I felt like I
was giving up cigarettes or gambling. I had withdrawal symptoms like headaches,
overwhelming cravings and mood swings, it was a real struggle," Kylie said.
giving up Coke I've lost 3 kilos. I feel physically lighter and also don't feel
so sluggish. I've got more energy and I don't have that constant burning desire
and addiction of ‘I have to have it' playing on my mind, which makes life in
general just so much better."
Delivered by the Cancer Council Victoria and Heart Foundation, the
LiveLighter campaign is funded by the Victorian State Government. For more information visit www.livelighter.com.au
- Victorian Population
Health Survey 2011–12
- Australian Health Survey (Nutrition First Results – Foods and Nutrients, 2011–12)