Reduction in purchases of sugar-sweetened beverages among low-income black adolescents after exposure to caloric information

Sara N Bleich, Bradley J Herring, Desmond D. Flagg, Tiffany L. Gary-Webb

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Objectives. We examined the effect of an intervention to provide caloric information about sugar-sweetened beverages (SSBs) on the number of SSB purchases. Methods. We used a case-crossover design with 4 corner stores located in lowincome, predominately Black neighborhoods in Baltimore, Maryland. The intervention randomly posted 1 of 3 signs with the following caloric information: (1) absolute caloric count, (2) percentage of total recommended daily intake, and (3) physical activity equivalent. We collected data for 1600 beverage sales by Black adolescents, aged 12-18 years, including 400 during a baseline period and 400 for each of the 3 caloric condition interventions. Results. Providing Black adolescents with any caloric information significantly reduced the odds of SSB purchases relative to the baseline (odds ratio [OR]= 0.56; 95% confidence interval [CI]=0.36, 0.89). When examining the 3 caloric conditions separately, the significant effect was observed when caloric information was provided as a physical activity equivalent (OR=0.51; 95% CI=0.31, 0.85). Conclusions. Providing easily understandable caloric information-particularly a physical activity equivalent-may reduce calorie intake from SSBs among low-income, Black adolescents.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)329-335
Number of pages7
JournalAmerican Journal of Public Health
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 2012


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

Cite this