Beginning Tuesday in New York City, patrons of restaurants, mobile food carts, delis and concessions at movie theaters, stadiums and arenas would not have been able to buy a sugary drink in a cup larger than 16 ounces.
Called the 'beverage portion rule,' the new regulation, which would have been enforced by the city's Department of Health, gave all the establishments three months to comply and then they will begin to be fined. The city enacted the rule in the hopes of fighting the obesity problem, and is the first in the nation to do so.
But on Monday, a New York judge struck down the regulation, calling it 'arbitrary and capricious.'
Reported The New York Times: "In his opinion, Justice Tingling specifically cited a perceived inequity of the soda rules, which applies to only certain sugared drinks -- for instance, beverages with a high milk content would be exempt -- and would apply only to some food establishments, like restaurants, but not others, like convenience stores."
According to the latest Community Health Survey in New York, in each of the five boroughs, those neighborhoods with higher rates of consumption of sugary drinks tended to have higher obesity rates. Nine of the top 10 neighborhoods with the highest obesity rates city-wide were also the highest in sugary drink consumption.
Sugary drinks are defined as sugar sweetened soda, iced tea, sports drinks and fruit punch.
What do you think? Do you think government rules can make us healthier? Can you sit through a movie without a gallon of soda in your lap? Add your opinion in the comments section of this article.