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  •  From “Drink Up” Initiative Imagine this. With minimal warning you are told on one of the hottest weeks of Summer with a heat index over 100 that your tap water will be shut off for the foreseeable future. India, Pakistan, Africa? None of these. It happened to 100,000 residents of Prince Georges (PG)  County, Maryland–a community just outside Washington, DC–in July 2013. Life is full of work-arounds. You avoid a traffic snarl by taking a back road. People in Prince Georges County were told to fill bath tubs and buy bottled water. One resident recalls purchasing 42 gallons. Businesses too were on their own. Problems like this in part help explain the controversy surrounding tap water in America. But so do marketing efforts that confuse people. Inside the beltway, DC Water promotes tap only. Home water treatment company Brita, a division of Clorox, challenges people to ban the bottle. Some, like Culligan, have even used print advertising to suggest that people may not actually know what’s in their tap water. Most of us carry around two sets of ideas. In a new study, the Young & Rubicam advertising agency concluded that while we may profess one idea, we often conceal another motivation. People may say that they are either for or against tap water or bottled water, but in reality they may consume both, or even substitute a different beverage for water. Working around all the vested interests in drinking water in America, Michelle Obama and the Partnership for a Healthier America launched a simple and sweet initiative to encourage each of us to make an easy choice to improve our health and well-being. Uniting the World of Drinking Water Mrs. Obama’s big idea? Drink more water. “I’ve come to realize that if we were going to take just one step to make ourselves and our families healthier, probably the single best thing we could do is to simply drink more water every day,” the First Lady said during a kickoff event in Watertown, Wisconsin on September 12. Still, a spokesman for Mrs. Obama was asked to clarify if this includes bottled water. It does. “Whether it comes from a faucet, an underground spring, a rambling river or a plastic bottle, the message is: ‘Drink up.” Partisan rancor being what it now is, however, an initiative to get Americans to drink more water–backed by the American Beverage Association and the International Bottled Water Association–ignited controversy and prompted skepticism among some citizen interest groups promoting tap water over bottled water and others who challenge the 8×8 convention. While the health benefits of drinking water are well understood, there is confusion about whether we need to drink eight 8-ounces glasses each day. Further, environmental groups that want people to avoid drinking from plastic water bottles were also uncomfortable with the announcement, even though for close to a billion people on our planet there is no such thing as safe and pure water from a tap and these groups, it seems, typically fail […]

    Safe Water, Fresh Look at the Tap

     From “Drink Up” Initiative Imagine this. With minimal warning you are told on one of the hottest weeks of Summer with a heat index over 100 that your tap water will be shut off for the foreseeable future. India, Pakistan, Africa? None of these. It happened to 100,000 residents of Prince Georges (PG)  County, Maryland–a community just outside Washington, DC–in July 2013. Life is full of work-arounds. You avoid a traffic snarl by taking a back road. People in Prince Georges County were told to fill bath tubs and buy bottled water. One resident recalls purchasing 42 gallons. Businesses too were on their own. Problems like this in part help explain the controversy surrounding tap water in America. But so do marketing efforts that confuse people. Inside the beltway, DC Water promotes tap only. Home water treatment company Brita, a division of Clorox, challenges people to ban the bottle. Some, like Culligan, have even used print advertising to suggest that people may not actually know what’s in their tap water. Most of us carry around two sets of ideas. In a new study, the Young & Rubicam advertising agency concluded that while we may profess one idea, we often conceal another motivation. People may say that they are either for or against tap water or bottled water, but in reality they may consume both, or even substitute a different beverage for water. Working around all the vested interests in drinking water in America, Michelle Obama and the Partnership for a Healthier America launched a simple and sweet initiative to encourage each of us to make an easy choice to improve our health and well-being. Uniting the World of Drinking Water Mrs. Obama’s big idea? Drink more water. “I’ve come to realize that if we were going to take just one step to make ourselves and our families healthier, probably the single best thing we could do is to simply drink more water every day,” the First Lady said during a kickoff event in Watertown, Wisconsin on September 12. Still, a spokesman for Mrs. Obama was asked to clarify if this includes bottled water. It does. “Whether it comes from a faucet, an underground spring, a rambling river or a plastic bottle, the message is: ‘Drink up.” Partisan rancor being what it now is, however, an initiative to get Americans to drink more water–backed by the American Beverage Association and the International Bottled Water Association–ignited controversy and prompted skepticism among some citizen interest groups promoting tap water over bottled water and others who challenge the 8×8 convention. While the health benefits of drinking water are well understood, there is confusion about whether we need to drink eight 8-ounces glasses each day. Further, environmental groups that want people to avoid drinking from plastic water bottles were also uncomfortable with the announcement, even though for close to a billion people on our planet there is no such thing as safe and pure water from a tap and these groups, it seems, typically fail […]

  • One of the emails I look forward to most is the daily HealthBeat from the Harvard School of Public Health (HSPH). For example, who knew that an estimated 32 million Americans have incontinence (an accidental loss of bladder control).  This kernal of knowledge was part of the recent email: “5 Ways to Dodge Incontinence.“ The good news, according to HSPH, is that if you buy their “special health report, “Better Bladder and Bowel Control,” you can learn about the causes of urinary and bowel incontinence and treatments. There is not yet any feedback, however, on how many of the people who have purchased the report have actually achieved success. But, there is this good reason to buy the report, “Most people take bladder control for granted—until the unintended loss of urine interrupts the ability to carry on an ordinary social and work life.” They are, things you can do without buying the report, such as losing weight, exercise–of course–and “don’t strain” your bowels. (I’ll save this one for the experts to explain.) But, there’s one more thing, HSPH notes that “the artificial sweetener NutraSweet, which contains aspartame, can give you a sort of false urge–the feeling you need to urinate even when the bladder isn’t full. But so can spicy foods, caffeine and alcohol. Nicotine is also considered a “bladder irritant.” My take on this is simple. Don’t stop doing what you are doing (except quit smoking). Just BE MINDFUL; CUT BACK on ALL SODA and DRINK LOTS OF WATER to help flush away the irritants. [If you would like to purchase the HSPH report, you can can save 30% using this link:  http://hvrd.me/12DaPMw.] Share on Facebook Tweet This Post

    What do Artificial Sweeteners & “Bladder Irritants” Have in Common?

    One of the emails I look forward to most is the daily HealthBeat from the Harvard School of Public Health (HSPH). For example, who knew that an estimated 32 million Americans have incontinence (an accidental loss of bladder control).  This kernal of knowledge was part of the recent email: “5 Ways to Dodge Incontinence.“ The good news, according to HSPH, is that if you buy their “special health report, “Better Bladder and Bowel Control,” you can learn about the causes of urinary and bowel incontinence and treatments. There is not yet any feedback, however, on how many of the people who have purchased the report have actually achieved success. But, there is this good reason to buy the report, “Most people take bladder control for granted—until the unintended loss of urine interrupts the ability to carry on an ordinary social and work life.” They are, things you can do without buying the report, such as losing weight, exercise–of course–and “don’t strain” your bowels. (I’ll save this one for the experts to explain.) But, there’s one more thing, HSPH notes that “the artificial sweetener NutraSweet, which contains aspartame, can give you a sort of false urge–the feeling you need to urinate even when the bladder isn’t full. But so can spicy foods, caffeine and alcohol. Nicotine is also considered a “bladder irritant.” My take on this is simple. Don’t stop doing what you are doing (except quit smoking). Just BE MINDFUL; CUT BACK on ALL SODA and DRINK LOTS OF WATER to help flush away the irritants. [If you would like to purchase the HSPH report, you can can save 30% using this link:  http://hvrd.me/12DaPMw.] Share on Facebook Tweet This Post

  • The next time you feel like foraging in the cupboard or fridge, consider that mindless snacking can pack on the pounds. Cleveland Clinic registered dietitians teamed up during Summer 2012 to suggest healthy alternatives to time-honored comfort foods. This included getting tough on soft drinks. Here’s what they wrote, “Pop open a can of soda when you’re thirsty, and you’ll feel refreshed. But you’re basically drinking sugar water with zero nutritional value. For a healthier alternative, try making a juice spritzer. Add a splash of soda water, diet ginger ale or diet lemon-lime soda to half a cup of 100 percent grape, orange or cranberry-blend juice with ice. Or cool off with diet tonic water and a wedge of lemon.” Better yet, the dietitians recommend drinking water — “It truly is ‘the real thing!” Source: Rethinking Snacks & Comfort Foods: 7 Tips — Health Hub from Cleveland Clinic http://bit.ly/UFOsCG]   Share on Facebook Tweet This Post

    Thirsty? Get tough on soft drinks.

    The next time you feel like foraging in the cupboard or fridge, consider that mindless snacking can pack on the pounds. Cleveland Clinic registered dietitians teamed up during Summer 2012 to suggest healthy alternatives to time-honored comfort foods. This included getting tough on soft drinks. Here’s what they wrote, “Pop open a can of soda when you’re thirsty, and you’ll feel refreshed. But you’re basically drinking sugar water with zero nutritional value. For a healthier alternative, try making a juice spritzer. Add a splash of soda water, diet ginger ale or diet lemon-lime soda to half a cup of 100 percent grape, orange or cranberry-blend juice with ice. Or cool off with diet tonic water and a wedge of lemon.” Better yet, the dietitians recommend drinking water — “It truly is ‘the real thing!” Source: Rethinking Snacks & Comfort Foods: 7 Tips — Health Hub from Cleveland Clinic http://bit.ly/UFOsCG]   Share on Facebook Tweet This Post

  • Great Fun. Presenting  “Who Owns Hydration” at the Inaugural Healthy Beverage Expo (June 2013). “Healthy” is hot. Healthy beverages are way “cool”. Share on Facebook Tweet This Post

    Healthy Beverage Expo in Las Vegas

    Great Fun. Presenting  “Who Owns Hydration” at the Inaugural Healthy Beverage Expo (June 2013). “Healthy” is hot. Healthy beverages are way “cool”. Share on Facebook Tweet This Post

  • Update (January 5, 2013): The beverage industry is trying to delay enforcement of NYC’s plan to limit the sale of supersized, sugar-sweetened beverages set to take effect mid-March. Share on Facebook Tweet This Post

    NYC Soda Ban Review

    Update (January 5, 2013): The beverage industry is trying to delay enforcement of NYC’s plan to limit the sale of supersized, sugar-sweetened beverages set to take effect mid-March. Share on Facebook Tweet This Post

  • Nutritionists, marketing experts and others who study sugary drink trends note cutting back is not so easy. Pierre Chandon, who studies how people make consumption decisions and how marketing can affect us without our even noticing it thinks that while consumers know that the purpose of advertising is to get us to buy things, they have no idea that the size and shape of a package can also influence us. Using different cup sizes from a fast food restaurant, Chandon, who is a marketing professor at Paris-based INSEAD, developed a soda quiz. The test is designed to point out that people often purchase larger cup sizes thinking that they are getting more for their money, which they are. But the real point is that the larger sizes are what’s making people fat. [The quiz accompanied an article, “How Can a Big Gulp Look So Small?,” published in the June 24 issue of The New York Times.] Chandon, who spent his summer as a visiting scholar at the Harvard Business School, told listeners on the H2O For Health radio show that understanding drink labels and calculating serving size and calories is increasingly tricky because a single bottle of soda is typically more than a single serving. As he likes to point out, Coca-Cola was only sold in 6.5 ounce bottles when it was first launched. Today, some people regularly purchase 64-ounce sizes of fountain drinks. Prof. Chandon summed consumers’ struggle this way. “Imagine there is a river and the banks of the river are slippery and so yes, it’s your personal choice to be careful and pay attention and not fall into the water. At the same time, clearly, the industry is trying to attract you to the river because that’s what they do.” In fact, the beverage industry argues that people have the right to choose their beverage. Prof. Chandon’s research attempts to find out how industry, the public health community and government can find a way around indfustry selling more and more calories that lead to higher obesity rate and health problems. Meanwhile, a coalition of health and consumer advocates and city public health departments have requested that U.S. Surgeon General Regina Benjamin launch a study on the health effects of soda and other sugary drinks. Health advocates say they want government intervention to help people make better decisions and stem the costly obesity crisis. While most people have healthy long-term goals, Prof. Chandon told listeners that, “In the short-term, we all go for taste. That’s an immediate reward that we may regret later.” One way around this, he believes, is to create marketing that focuses on simple solution: satiation. That’s where water comes in. Water delivers maximum hydration with zero calories and can sometimes keep people from over-eating or consuming a less healthy beverage Share on Facebook Tweet This Post

    Demystifying Cup Sizes

    Nutritionists, marketing experts and others who study sugary drink trends note cutting back is not so easy. Pierre Chandon, who studies how people make consumption decisions and how marketing can affect us without our even noticing it thinks that while consumers know that the purpose of advertising is to get us to buy things, they have no idea that the size and shape of a package can also influence us. Using different cup sizes from a fast food restaurant, Chandon, who is a marketing professor at Paris-based INSEAD, developed a soda quiz. The test is designed to point out that people often purchase larger cup sizes thinking that they are getting more for their money, which they are. But the real point is that the larger sizes are what’s making people fat. [The quiz accompanied an article, “How Can a Big Gulp Look So Small?,” published in the June 24 issue of The New York Times.] Chandon, who spent his summer as a visiting scholar at the Harvard Business School, told listeners on the H2O For Health radio show that understanding drink labels and calculating serving size and calories is increasingly tricky because a single bottle of soda is typically more than a single serving. As he likes to point out, Coca-Cola was only sold in 6.5 ounce bottles when it was first launched. Today, some people regularly purchase 64-ounce sizes of fountain drinks. Prof. Chandon summed consumers’ struggle this way. “Imagine there is a river and the banks of the river are slippery and so yes, it’s your personal choice to be careful and pay attention and not fall into the water. At the same time, clearly, the industry is trying to attract you to the river because that’s what they do.” In fact, the beverage industry argues that people have the right to choose their beverage. Prof. Chandon’s research attempts to find out how industry, the public health community and government can find a way around indfustry selling more and more calories that lead to higher obesity rate and health problems. Meanwhile, a coalition of health and consumer advocates and city public health departments have requested that U.S. Surgeon General Regina Benjamin launch a study on the health effects of soda and other sugary drinks. Health advocates say they want government intervention to help people make better decisions and stem the costly obesity crisis. While most people have healthy long-term goals, Prof. Chandon told listeners that, “In the short-term, we all go for taste. That’s an immediate reward that we may regret later.” One way around this, he believes, is to create marketing that focuses on simple solution: satiation. That’s where water comes in. Water delivers maximum hydration with zero calories and can sometimes keep people from over-eating or consuming a less healthy beverage Share on Facebook Tweet This Post

  • Bottled Up (from http://www.trendcentral.com/life/bottled-up/) Innovation is igniting a reconsideration of reusable water options With 67 million water bottles thrown away daily and only 10 percent recycled, waste management remains a growing problem. While lawmakers seek solutions with bills like the National Park Service’s ban on sales of plastic water bottles in the Grand Canyon, the onus isn’t only on government. Helping consumers do their part, designers are introducing inventive new twists on the once passé reusable water bottle. 999bottle: Artefact industrial designer Fernd van Engelen conceived a reusable water bottle that can track and envisage the ecological impact of using it each time it’s refilled. Dubbed the 999bottle, its three attached and adjustable dials can be advanced one notch each time the bottle is replenished. A hypothetical corresponding smartphone app creates a visualization of the total amount of bottles saved. For example, at eight bottles, 999bottle will have paid for itself, while 147 bottles will have saved $326 and seven gallons of oil. For added motivation, friends can team up on the proposed 999bottle Facebook platform to visually portray their collective impact. Get this idea on Kickstarter already! Eau Good: Many refrigerators are stocked with the Brita, but Eau Good is a portable filtration system from the minds of creative studio Black+Blum. The centerpiece of this reusable water bottle is a piece of binchotan, a traditional Japanese charcoal stick. While charcoal isn’t a new source of water filtration, its lengthy six-month shelf life far surpasses alternatives, and it can be recycled into a fertilizer or deodorizer when finished. As it balances the water’s pH, reduces chlorine content, and mineralizes the water for improved taste, Eau Good’s clear, curvy body and natural cork stopper proudly displays, whereas similar systems hide, its unique carbon filter. Lifefactory: Disposable water bottles cost up to $3 a pop and tap water runs less than 10 cents per refill, so reusable water bottles can have significant economic benefits. However, choosing the “right” bottle can be overwhelming in a market stocked with both charitable and environmentally friendly options. Cutting through the clutter, Lifefactory offers a sustainable water bottle with a clear mission to provide the “purest water bottle on the market.” Ensuring that each bottle (and, thus, the water within) is non-toxic, Lifefactory bottles are made of glass and housed in silicone sleeves. So safe are these chemical-free containers that there’s even a selection of 4-ounce and 9-ounce baby bottle miniatures. Share on Facebook Tweet This Post

    Bottled Up

    Bottled Up (from http://www.trendcentral.com/life/bottled-up/) Innovation is igniting a reconsideration of reusable water options With 67 million water bottles thrown away daily and only 10 percent recycled, waste management remains a growing problem. While lawmakers seek solutions with bills like the National Park Service’s ban on sales of plastic water bottles in the Grand Canyon, the onus isn’t only on government. Helping consumers do their part, designers are introducing inventive new twists on the once passé reusable water bottle. 999bottle: Artefact industrial designer Fernd van Engelen conceived a reusable water bottle that can track and envisage the ecological impact of using it each time it’s refilled. Dubbed the 999bottle, its three attached and adjustable dials can be advanced one notch each time the bottle is replenished. A hypothetical corresponding smartphone app creates a visualization of the total amount of bottles saved. For example, at eight bottles, 999bottle will have paid for itself, while 147 bottles will have saved $326 and seven gallons of oil. For added motivation, friends can team up on the proposed 999bottle Facebook platform to visually portray their collective impact. Get this idea on Kickstarter already! Eau Good: Many refrigerators are stocked with the Brita, but Eau Good is a portable filtration system from the minds of creative studio Black+Blum. The centerpiece of this reusable water bottle is a piece of binchotan, a traditional Japanese charcoal stick. While charcoal isn’t a new source of water filtration, its lengthy six-month shelf life far surpasses alternatives, and it can be recycled into a fertilizer or deodorizer when finished. As it balances the water’s pH, reduces chlorine content, and mineralizes the water for improved taste, Eau Good’s clear, curvy body and natural cork stopper proudly displays, whereas similar systems hide, its unique carbon filter. Lifefactory: Disposable water bottles cost up to $3 a pop and tap water runs less than 10 cents per refill, so reusable water bottles can have significant economic benefits. However, choosing the “right” bottle can be overwhelming in a market stocked with both charitable and environmentally friendly options. Cutting through the clutter, Lifefactory offers a sustainable water bottle with a clear mission to provide the “purest water bottle on the market.” Ensuring that each bottle (and, thus, the water within) is non-toxic, Lifefactory bottles are made of glass and housed in silicone sleeves. So safe are these chemical-free containers that there’s even a selection of 4-ounce and 9-ounce baby bottle miniatures. Share on Facebook Tweet This Post

  • In her blog at fitstudio.com, Andrea Metcalf spells out why drinking water is important. In her words …. One of the most important things you can do to achieve and maintain good health is amazingly simple: Drink lots of water! Water revitalizes your body and flushes out toxins. In addition, people often think they’re hungry when in fact they’re only thirsty. Accordingly, drinking water can help you lose weight as well. The amount of water you need will vary, depending partly on your activity level. If you’re not active, you should drink a minimum of eight cups of water per day. If you’re working out regularly, you’ll probably need more to replace fluids lost during exercise. The following conditions may indicate that you’re not getting enough water: fatigue loss of appetite flushed skin heat intolerance light-headedness dark urine with a strong odor These days, you face a choice of spring water, mineral water, tap water, sparkling water, and various other options. Which one’s for you? The most convenient choice is water from your faucet. Tap water contains a variety of useful minerals. In many areas, however, it also contains contaminants such as pesticides, chlorine byproducts, and harmful microorganisms. If you’re concerned about contamination, bottled water is an option (or) you might choose to drink tap water that has been run through a filter. No matter what kind of water you choose, the bottom line is to drink lots of it! Andrea Metcalf has been teaching fitness and nutrition and training clients since 1983. She is the author of the book Naked Fitness and has produced a number of fitness DVDs. You can follow her on Twitter at @Andreametcalf. Share on Facebook Tweet This Post

    WATER: A SIMPLE SECRET TO GOOD HEALTH

    In her blog at fitstudio.com, Andrea Metcalf spells out why drinking water is important. In her words …. One of the most important things you can do to achieve and maintain good health is amazingly simple: Drink lots of water! Water revitalizes your body and flushes out toxins. In addition, people often think they’re hungry when in fact they’re only thirsty. Accordingly, drinking water can help you lose weight as well. The amount of water you need will vary, depending partly on your activity level. If you’re not active, you should drink a minimum of eight cups of water per day. If you’re working out regularly, you’ll probably need more to replace fluids lost during exercise. The following conditions may indicate that you’re not getting enough water: fatigue loss of appetite flushed skin heat intolerance light-headedness dark urine with a strong odor These days, you face a choice of spring water, mineral water, tap water, sparkling water, and various other options. Which one’s for you? The most convenient choice is water from your faucet. Tap water contains a variety of useful minerals. In many areas, however, it also contains contaminants such as pesticides, chlorine byproducts, and harmful microorganisms. If you’re concerned about contamination, bottled water is an option (or) you might choose to drink tap water that has been run through a filter. No matter what kind of water you choose, the bottom line is to drink lots of it! Andrea Metcalf has been teaching fitness and nutrition and training clients since 1983. She is the author of the book Naked Fitness and has produced a number of fitness DVDs. You can follow her on Twitter at @Andreametcalf. Share on Facebook Tweet This Post

  • Corporations line up to fight wasting water If we are to understand the global water crisis, we must first ask, “Who uses more water: people, agriculture or food processors?” Secondly, we must know if the problem of lack of safe drinking water for close to a billion people on the planet stems from a lack of awareness of the importance of this issue or a failure to act appropriately. In a 2011 survey of adults living in the U.S., Dallas-based Shelton Group gave respondents a handful of environmental choices and asked them to choose just one, or they could opt for a million dollars. Thirty-five percent selected making clean water for the world a priority and only 28 percent chose to take the money. The other third of respondents picked other options: stop global warming, save the rainforests, and save the world’s endangered species. So in the case of the world’s drinking water needs, it’s pretty clear that awareness is quite high, which may be why some non-governmental organizations (NGO, for short) target their donor appeals to this cause. The result is that campaigns for humanity often employ traditional and social media advertising strategies that depict deplorable situations. But how organizations call attention to a problem of crisis proportion may just be the problem. USEPA took note of this is partnering with advertising executives in a new campaign that uses humor instead of the guilt approach in an effort to get people to conserve tap water. The “Wasting Water Is Weird” campaign employs “Rip the Drip” as its primary spokesperson. Rip – as in the guy’s a “drip,” a derogatory phrase from the 1950s applied to annoying youth — is definitely not someone you want to discover in your driveway, bathroom or kitchen. But that’s exactly where “Rip the Drip,” whose attire consists of a so-called “wife-beaters” undershirt and day old(s) facial hair growth, appears in the videos and ads in several 30-second executions initially rolled out on YouTube, and according to trade industry news reports, also to 60-plus TV markets. The premise of the omnipresent nerd in the life of the onscreen average Jane and Joe’s is to be the angry voice inside each of us that says do the opposite of what we’re being asked to do (a very sophisticated read on today’s authority-resistant culture). So, “Rip the Drip” reminds consumers who unthinkingly waste water doing everyday chores, such as letting the faucet run while brushing teeth, to think about their actions. He does this by acknowledging how much he likes wasting water. Offscreen, according to the agency’s storyline, Rip works at a water park, takes long showers, opens fire hydrants for fun, and loves listening to running faucets. Marketing professionals will tell you that it takes more than awareness of an issue to affect changes in behavior: witness anti-smoking, anti-drug and teen pregnancy campaigns. And Shelton’s own research found that over 60 percent of people already turn off the water when brushing their teeth. So, is the […]

    Humor vs. Dire Straights – Challenging the conventional NGO Approach

    Corporations line up to fight wasting water If we are to understand the global water crisis, we must first ask, “Who uses more water: people, agriculture or food processors?” Secondly, we must know if the problem of lack of safe drinking water for close to a billion people on the planet stems from a lack of awareness of the importance of this issue or a failure to act appropriately. In a 2011 survey of adults living in the U.S., Dallas-based Shelton Group gave respondents a handful of environmental choices and asked them to choose just one, or they could opt for a million dollars. Thirty-five percent selected making clean water for the world a priority and only 28 percent chose to take the money. The other third of respondents picked other options: stop global warming, save the rainforests, and save the world’s endangered species. So in the case of the world’s drinking water needs, it’s pretty clear that awareness is quite high, which may be why some non-governmental organizations (NGO, for short) target their donor appeals to this cause. The result is that campaigns for humanity often employ traditional and social media advertising strategies that depict deplorable situations. But how organizations call attention to a problem of crisis proportion may just be the problem. USEPA took note of this is partnering with advertising executives in a new campaign that uses humor instead of the guilt approach in an effort to get people to conserve tap water. The “Wasting Water Is Weird” campaign employs “Rip the Drip” as its primary spokesperson. Rip – as in the guy’s a “drip,” a derogatory phrase from the 1950s applied to annoying youth — is definitely not someone you want to discover in your driveway, bathroom or kitchen. But that’s exactly where “Rip the Drip,” whose attire consists of a so-called “wife-beaters” undershirt and day old(s) facial hair growth, appears in the videos and ads in several 30-second executions initially rolled out on YouTube, and according to trade industry news reports, also to 60-plus TV markets. The premise of the omnipresent nerd in the life of the onscreen average Jane and Joe’s is to be the angry voice inside each of us that says do the opposite of what we’re being asked to do (a very sophisticated read on today’s authority-resistant culture). So, “Rip the Drip” reminds consumers who unthinkingly waste water doing everyday chores, such as letting the faucet run while brushing teeth, to think about their actions. He does this by acknowledging how much he likes wasting water. Offscreen, according to the agency’s storyline, Rip works at a water park, takes long showers, opens fire hydrants for fun, and loves listening to running faucets. Marketing professionals will tell you that it takes more than awareness of an issue to affect changes in behavior: witness anti-smoking, anti-drug and teen pregnancy campaigns. And Shelton’s own research found that over 60 percent of people already turn off the water when brushing their teeth. So, is the […]

  • Do you know how much sugar is in everyday foods and drinks? Being thirsty and tired often makes us think we are hungry when we are not. Trish Barry’s essay for Patch [http://bit.ly/nNE166] begins with her describing how she lost close to 11 pounds through a weight loss program at work. The Connecticut mom said the  plan revolves around paying attention to yourself, and how hungry you really are. Trish avoided the specifics of the program, save one: the suggestion to avoid sugar: no sweets for a while, and then when you do add them, make it occasional, very occasional. Encouraged by her own success, she began to rethink her kids’ drinks. I thought about the juice boxes that I put into my kids lunches. Juicy Juice which boasts 100% juice has twenty-two grams of sugar in one box! That is 5 ½ teaspoons of sugar (four grams is equal to one teaspoon of sugar) in a juice box! HOLY COW!” Like all concerned parents, Trish knows to dilute juice at home. “When we buy bigger bottles of juice, we have generally diluted it. You better believe that we will be diluting even more now.” A major problem is quantity. Trish asks, “Have you ever had just eight ounces of Gatorade? Nope me neither. They come in those thirty-two ounce bottles, and I can drink those down without thinking about it. That thirty-two ounce bottle has fifty-six grams of sugar, equal to fourteen teaspoons.” And Trish hasn’t stopped counting. “A twenty ounce bottle of Coke has seventeen teaspoons of sugar. To get an idea of how much this really is, take one of your empty soda bottles and measure out seventeen teaspoons of sugar and pour it in.” Trish’s take-away should be the battle cry of every mom: “It’s a LOT of sugar.” Share on Facebook Tweet This Post

    Mom Talk: Watch the Sugar Intake

    Do you know how much sugar is in everyday foods and drinks? Being thirsty and tired often makes us think we are hungry when we are not. Trish Barry’s essay for Patch [http://bit.ly/nNE166] begins with her describing how she lost close to 11 pounds through a weight loss program at work. The Connecticut mom said the  plan revolves around paying attention to yourself, and how hungry you really are. Trish avoided the specifics of the program, save one: the suggestion to avoid sugar: no sweets for a while, and then when you do add them, make it occasional, very occasional. Encouraged by her own success, she began to rethink her kids’ drinks. I thought about the juice boxes that I put into my kids lunches. Juicy Juice which boasts 100% juice has twenty-two grams of sugar in one box! That is 5 ½ teaspoons of sugar (four grams is equal to one teaspoon of sugar) in a juice box! HOLY COW!” Like all concerned parents, Trish knows to dilute juice at home. “When we buy bigger bottles of juice, we have generally diluted it. You better believe that we will be diluting even more now.” A major problem is quantity. Trish asks, “Have you ever had just eight ounces of Gatorade? Nope me neither. They come in those thirty-two ounce bottles, and I can drink those down without thinking about it. That thirty-two ounce bottle has fifty-six grams of sugar, equal to fourteen teaspoons.” And Trish hasn’t stopped counting. “A twenty ounce bottle of Coke has seventeen teaspoons of sugar. To get an idea of how much this really is, take one of your empty soda bottles and measure out seventeen teaspoons of sugar and pour it in.” Trish’s take-away should be the battle cry of every mom: “It’s a LOT of sugar.” Share on Facebook Tweet This Post

  • Why would someone want to dump 57 tons of white sand into an old school bus? To make a point. The point being to demonstrate how much sugar schoolchildren in the Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD), the second largest in the U.S., consume every week just from flavored milk served in school meals. The sand in the school bus stunt was part of celebrity chef Jamie Oliver’s attempt to confront LAUSD, which refuses to allow his ABC film crew to shoot in public school cafeterias. As of this writing, Oliver, in his second season with the U.S. broadcast of “Food Revolution” has taken to the streets of LA with outdoor student cookoffs and cooking classes on wheels in an effort to teach kids about nutrition. Better nutrition for school kids is also the aim of science-based Dietary Guidelines for Americans, released January 31, 2011 by the Departments of Agriculture and of Health and Human Services. (1) But will kids eat healthier food, and what about drinking water in place of soft drinks? Louise Esaian, who oversees the food service program for Chicago Public Schools (CPS) told Chicago Tribune reporter Monica Eng that while 70 percent of students choose to eat lunch at school that introducing new concepts is challenging, especially if healthful options don’t actually taste as good as processed food. According to the Tribune report, CPS brought back a spicy chicken patty sandwich in all district high schools during January 2011, because of sagging lunch sales. (2) Tribune reporters watched nine of 10 students in the lunch line at North-Grand H.S. chose the less healthy, processed spicy chicken option with the addition of ketchup or barbecue sauce and pickled jalapeno pepper rings containing more than 1,100 mg of sodium, or two-thirds the daily recommendation from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Most parents know that processed food with loads of salt tastes better compared to vegetables with no salt. So chefs pushing a healthier way to eat conclude that because it takes far less sodium to make dishes like rice and beans or broccoli palatable to students than what is used in processed foods, that it’s okay to add a little salt to fresh veggies. Nutrition expert Jane Brody of The New York Times advocates gradual adaptations. She wrote recently that, “Moderation, rather than constant deprivation and denial, is the key to a wholesome diet that you can stick with and enjoy. I say this with confidence because I’ve lived this way for most of my adult life and I’ve watched my sons do the same for more than four decades.” (3) “We get so much health advice on how to eat 100 percent perfect,” Clint Carter, contributing editor to the “Eat This, Not That,” published by Rodale Inc., recently told Barb Berggoetz in an article published by The Indianapolis Star. Instead of approaching food as an all-or-nothing transaction, Carter recommends making smarter decisions. Eating at a restaurant, even at fast-food places, Carter said, doesn’t mean you […]

    Jamie Oliver Makes a Point

    Why would someone want to dump 57 tons of white sand into an old school bus? To make a point. The point being to demonstrate how much sugar schoolchildren in the Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD), the second largest in the U.S., consume every week just from flavored milk served in school meals. The sand in the school bus stunt was part of celebrity chef Jamie Oliver’s attempt to confront LAUSD, which refuses to allow his ABC film crew to shoot in public school cafeterias. As of this writing, Oliver, in his second season with the U.S. broadcast of “Food Revolution” has taken to the streets of LA with outdoor student cookoffs and cooking classes on wheels in an effort to teach kids about nutrition. Better nutrition for school kids is also the aim of science-based Dietary Guidelines for Americans, released January 31, 2011 by the Departments of Agriculture and of Health and Human Services. (1) But will kids eat healthier food, and what about drinking water in place of soft drinks? Louise Esaian, who oversees the food service program for Chicago Public Schools (CPS) told Chicago Tribune reporter Monica Eng that while 70 percent of students choose to eat lunch at school that introducing new concepts is challenging, especially if healthful options don’t actually taste as good as processed food. According to the Tribune report, CPS brought back a spicy chicken patty sandwich in all district high schools during January 2011, because of sagging lunch sales. (2) Tribune reporters watched nine of 10 students in the lunch line at North-Grand H.S. chose the less healthy, processed spicy chicken option with the addition of ketchup or barbecue sauce and pickled jalapeno pepper rings containing more than 1,100 mg of sodium, or two-thirds the daily recommendation from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Most parents know that processed food with loads of salt tastes better compared to vegetables with no salt. So chefs pushing a healthier way to eat conclude that because it takes far less sodium to make dishes like rice and beans or broccoli palatable to students than what is used in processed foods, that it’s okay to add a little salt to fresh veggies. Nutrition expert Jane Brody of The New York Times advocates gradual adaptations. She wrote recently that, “Moderation, rather than constant deprivation and denial, is the key to a wholesome diet that you can stick with and enjoy. I say this with confidence because I’ve lived this way for most of my adult life and I’ve watched my sons do the same for more than four decades.” (3) “We get so much health advice on how to eat 100 percent perfect,” Clint Carter, contributing editor to the “Eat This, Not That,” published by Rodale Inc., recently told Barb Berggoetz in an article published by The Indianapolis Star. Instead of approaching food as an all-or-nothing transaction, Carter recommends making smarter decisions. Eating at a restaurant, even at fast-food places, Carter said, doesn’t mean you […]

  • – January 2011 Is There a Middle Ground for Fluoridation of Drinking Water? Public officials are quick to reassure us about the safety of our drinking water even when there may be potential pollutants, such as prescription drugs. This is not to disparage the job that public water suppliers do, and there needs to be a line drawn somewhere when it comes to dangerous contaminants. As American Dental Association President Dr. Raymond F. Gist has commented, “with science on their side … we have always looked to the federal health agencies to guide us on this and other public health matters.” Following the January 2011 commitment by the Department of Health & Human Services and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (HHS/CDC) to both maintain its recommendation to add fluoride to tap water, but push it down to the lowest level to prevent tooth decay. American Water Works Association (AWWA) executive director David LaFrance issued a tepid statement both commending government agencies for affirming the importance of community water fluoridation and for taking into account multiple sources of exposure. This reaction from one of public water suppliers’ most credible voices underscores why people often have conflicts with regard to the safety of their tap water. From people that I have spoken with, mixed messages regarding drinking water all too frequently confuse people about what to drink; may reduce consumption; or worse, because of the confusion, keep some people from drinking water altogether. This blog is dedicated to the importance of drinking water over less healthy beverages. When it comes to the health of our teeth, the best advice is to cut out the junk food and high-sugar beverages that build up acid. This is especially important for children’s teeth. In areas with really bad dental health, it’s the diet and the acids and bacteria in the mouth causing the biggest problems; and a dose of fluoride in our tap water can help protect teeth. I’ll cover many topics about contaminants in drinking water as well as the benefits of consuming water in the future, but this blog specifically deals with fluoride. Community water fluoridation has been labeled one of 10 great public health achievements of the 20th century by CDC. Over time, the occurrence of decay in at least one tooth among U.S. children was reduced from about 90 percent to 60 percent. But times have changed since Grand Rapids, MI became the world’s first city to add fluoride to its water supply in 1950. And the problem now is that kids ages 12 through 15 increasingly experience a splotchy tooth condition. Also, CDC says the problem has grown far more common since the 1980s. The unnerving update is that two in five teens in America show signs of what the medical community calls dental fluorosis (streaking, spotting or pitting of teeth), but what its harshest critics call “fluoride poisoning.” HHS/CDC maintain that dental fluorosis in the U.S. mostly appears as, “barely visible lacy white markings or spots on the enamel.” […]

    New Fluoride Recommendation

    – January 2011 Is There a Middle Ground for Fluoridation of Drinking Water? Public officials are quick to reassure us about the safety of our drinking water even when there may be potential pollutants, such as prescription drugs. This is not to disparage the job that public water suppliers do, and there needs to be a line drawn somewhere when it comes to dangerous contaminants. As American Dental Association President Dr. Raymond F. Gist has commented, “with science on their side … we have always looked to the federal health agencies to guide us on this and other public health matters.” Following the January 2011 commitment by the Department of Health & Human Services and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (HHS/CDC) to both maintain its recommendation to add fluoride to tap water, but push it down to the lowest level to prevent tooth decay. American Water Works Association (AWWA) executive director David LaFrance issued a tepid statement both commending government agencies for affirming the importance of community water fluoridation and for taking into account multiple sources of exposure. This reaction from one of public water suppliers’ most credible voices underscores why people often have conflicts with regard to the safety of their tap water. From people that I have spoken with, mixed messages regarding drinking water all too frequently confuse people about what to drink; may reduce consumption; or worse, because of the confusion, keep some people from drinking water altogether. This blog is dedicated to the importance of drinking water over less healthy beverages. When it comes to the health of our teeth, the best advice is to cut out the junk food and high-sugar beverages that build up acid. This is especially important for children’s teeth. In areas with really bad dental health, it’s the diet and the acids and bacteria in the mouth causing the biggest problems; and a dose of fluoride in our tap water can help protect teeth. I’ll cover many topics about contaminants in drinking water as well as the benefits of consuming water in the future, but this blog specifically deals with fluoride. Community water fluoridation has been labeled one of 10 great public health achievements of the 20th century by CDC. Over time, the occurrence of decay in at least one tooth among U.S. children was reduced from about 90 percent to 60 percent. But times have changed since Grand Rapids, MI became the world’s first city to add fluoride to its water supply in 1950. And the problem now is that kids ages 12 through 15 increasingly experience a splotchy tooth condition. Also, CDC says the problem has grown far more common since the 1980s. The unnerving update is that two in five teens in America show signs of what the medical community calls dental fluorosis (streaking, spotting or pitting of teeth), but what its harshest critics call “fluoride poisoning.” HHS/CDC maintain that dental fluorosis in the U.S. mostly appears as, “barely visible lacy white markings or spots on the enamel.” […]