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Originally published November 10 2003

Soft drink companies shouldn't be allowed to sponsor sporting events

by Mike Adams, the Health Ranger, NaturalNews Editor

I recently saw a walk for diabetes sponsored by -- get this -- Coca Cola. That's right: the company that brings you flavored sugar water, a substance that has been frequently accused of promoting obesity and diabetes, is the same one sponsoring the walk to cure diabetes. Only in America, right?

Not quite: the same thing is true in the U.K. where junk food giants like McDonalds sponsor sporting events. McDonalds is facing the possibility of being banned from sponsoring such events.

Let's break through all the politics and get down to common sense here. Foods and beverages that promote obesity and disease should never be sponsors of health and fitness events. It's sort of like having Hitler sponsor Hanukkah. The two are at such extremes that the very idea of one sponsoring the other is ludicrous.

It wasn't long ago, however, when cigarette companies sponsored sporting events in the USA. "The official cigarette of the United States Olympics!" Well, not quite, but we did see all sorts of Marlboro promotions at events whose participants wouldn't dare touch a cigarette.

In my view, all soft drink companies, junk food restaurants, and cigarette companies should be banned from advertising at any sporting event. Whether we're talking high school football or professional football, disease-promoting products have no business being advertised there. That goes for prescription drugs, too.

Athletes should simply refuse to participate in events that promote products that cause cancer, diabetes, heart disease and other serious health conditions. Because a true athlete is a community leader, not just a top performer, and no person who cares about their community would allow their publicity assets to be auctioned off to the highest junk food bidder.


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