Beyoncé, the multi-talented megastar and celebrity spokeswoman for Michelle Obama's "Let's Move" campaign to improve children’s nutrition and fitness, signed a $50 million deal to endorse Pepsi. Talk about sending mixed messages to America’s kids!
Beyoncé owes it to her fans, particularly the legions of kids who view her as a role model, to use her fame to promote healthy lifestyles, not soda.
Tell Beyoncé to stop marketing soda to America’s youth and ditch her deal with Pepsi. If she can’t break her contract, she should donate her Pepsi earnings to diabetes clinics and programs that help prevent childhood obesity. Beyoncé should also step down immediately as a spokeswoman for Let’s Move. You can’t be a role model for nutrition and health while hawking Pepsi to kids.
When a celebrity like Beyoncé promotes soda, she is contributing to our nation's health crisis. Dozens of studies have found that increased consumption of soda and other sugary drinks are heavily linked to our nation's devastating childhood obesity epidemic. According to a fact sheet prepared by the Harvard School of Public Health:
- For each additional 12 ounce soda children consumed each day, the odds of becoming obese increased by 60%.
- People who consume sugary drinks regularly -- 1 to 2 cans a day or more -- have a 26% greater risk of developing type 2 diabetes.
- Soda consumption has also been linked to increased rates of heart disease and dental decay.
Also disturbing, Beyoncé is promoting a brand that regularly targets marketing to children, teens, African-American youth and Hispanic youth according to a study by the Yale Rudd Center. Beyoncé has been given the gift of talent and fame. She should use it more wisely.
You owe it to your fans, particularly to the legions of kids and teens who see you as a role model, to use your fame to promote healthy lifestyles, not soda. Dozens of studies have found that increased consumption of soda and other sugary drinks are heavily linked to our nation's devastating childhood obesity epidemic, type 2 diabetes, heart disease and dental decay.
Beyoncé, we respectfully request that you:
- Stop marketing soda to America’s youth and ditch your deal with Pepsi.
- Donate the millions of dollars you will make from the Pepsi deal to diabetes clinics and programs to prevent childhood obesity, if you are unable to break your contract
- Step down immediately as spokeswoman for Michelle Obama's "Let’s Move," a program designed to improve the health of America's kids.
No one can be a credible role model for nutrition and health while hawking Pepsi. You have been given the gift of talent and fame. We ask that you begin to use it more wisely.