Council leader's column: Give Up Loving Pop (GULP) campaign

Date published: 15 March 2019

I was reading some horrifying statistics recently which are directly linked to drinking fizzy drinks. I had a vague awareness they were bad for you without actually understanding just how bad.

These stats showed that:

  • People who drink two cans a day have a 26% greater risk of developing diabetes.
  • A can of cola a day adds over a stone in weight per year.
  • A study of 80,000 women found those who had a can a day had a 75% higher risk of gout.
  • A can of pop a day is equal to 9.1 bags of sugar per year.
  • In a study nearly 61,000 young people were taken to hospital for tooth decay.

When you add to that, that you would have an extra £438 a year in your pocket if you saved the money from one can of pop a day and that you’d have to take a 35-minute bike ride to burn off the calories from one can of fizzy drink, you start to understand the growing campaign urging us to Give Up Loving Pop. GULP for short.

As part of the campaign our schools have been taking part in the Give Up Loving Pop (GULP) challenge to drink just milk and water for a month.

I visited St John’s CE Thornham Primary School last week to see how they were getting on with the challenge. The fact they all got a Healthy Heroes GULP water bottle and water chart shows for taking part shows their commitment.

If you haven’t had enough scary facts, here’s a few more:

  • Nearly half of the borough’s five-year-olds have tooth decay.
  • Over 10% of our reception-age children are obese and 14% are overweight.
  • As are nearly a quarter of our year 6 children.

Brimrod Community Primary, St John's CE Thornham Primary, Milnrow Parish CE Primary, Spotland Primary, Caldershaw Primary, St John’s RC Primary and St Margaret’s CE Primary have taken part in the Give Up Loving Pop (GULP) challenge so far, which means many more still haven’t got it yet.

We’ve all got to stop drinking fizzy pop, but particularly our children.

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