Banning sugary drinks at workplaces has shown positive health effects, according to a study conducted by the researchers at the University of California San Francisco (UCSF) in the US.

The 10-month study, involving 202 participants, revealed that the ban has led to a 48.5% reduction in the consumption of sugary drinks and a decrease of waist size.

Individuals lost an average of 2.1 centimetres from their waistlines, with almost 70% of them showing a decrease in waist size.

UCSF Aging, Metabolism and Emotions Center director Elissa Epel said: “This shows us that simply ending sales of sugary drinks in the workplace can have a meaningful effect on improving health in less than one year.

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“High sugar intake leads to abdominal fat and insulin resistance, which are known risk factors for diabetes, heart disease, cancer and even dementia. Recent studies have also linked sugar intake to early mortality.”

Additionally, the study found that participants who reduced their consumption of sugary drinks such as sodas, sports drinks and sweetened teas improved their insulin resistance and lowered total cholesterol levels.

Researchers initiated the study before UCSF ended the sale of sugar-sweetened beverages at its campus sites and medical facilities in 2015.

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The participants, employees of UCSF, were examined again ten months after implementation of the ban.

At the beginning of the study, participants, on average, consumed 35 ounces of sugary drinks per day and by the end of the study, their consumption levels dropped down to 18 ounces, representing a decrease of 48.5%.

UCSF professor in the Philip R. Lee Institute for Health Policy Studies Laura Schmidt said: “This was not a ban on the consumption of sugared beverages.

“People could still bring them from home or buy them off-campus. This study demonstrates the value in rigging workplace environments to support people’s health rather than the opposite.

“UCSF simply took sugary drinks out of workplace vending machines, break rooms and cafeterias and wound up improving employees’ health.”