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World Temperance Day 2021

Wong Shu Lee  

|

  October 02, 2021

Tomorrow is the World Temperance Day. This day is observed on the 3rd of October every year as a social movement against the consumption of alcoholic beverages. 

 

Participants in the movement typically criticize alcohol intoxication or promote complete abstinence from alcohol (teetotalism), and its leaders emphasize alcohol’s negative effects on people’s health, personalities and family lives. 

 

Typically the movement promotes alcohol education and it also demands the passage of new laws against the sale of alcohol, either regulation on the availability of alcohol, or the complete prohibition of it. 

 

We all understand that alcoholism and binge drinking is dangerous as these habits can lead to regrettable situations. 

 

However, since we’re on the topic of drinking, we would like to highlight the problems of excessive drinking of sugary beverages. 

 

According to a report by UNICEF in 2019, Malaysia has become the fattest nation in Asia and has the second-highest child obesity rate among children in ASEAN aged 5 to 19 years, with 7.1% of children under the age of 5 being overweight. 

 

Consuming sugary drinks contributes to weight gain and obesity, and then a range of non-communicable diseases such as diabetes, heart disease, stroke, and cancer. The evidence is clear: a child’s Body Mass Index (BMI) goes up significantly when they have sugary drinks, and it goes down when they stop. 

 

We Malaysians are always known to love sugary drinks like canned soft drinks that usually come along with our fast-food meals and the teh tarik at mamak stalls. Millennials’ favourite bubble milk teas and ‘healthy’ fruit juices usually contain high amounts of sugar too. 

 

As we’re celebrating World Temperance Day, we would like to urge everyone to be more mindful whenever they consume any beverages rather than plain water. Drinking these drinks may make us feel happy temporarily, however drinking them excessively can lead to many diseases, which leave us suffer permanently. 

 

Thus, let’s limit our intake of all unhealthy beverages, be it alcoholic drinks or sugary drinks. The best hydration is a glass of plain water, alternatively, you can add a few slices of cucumbers or lemon for some flavours. 

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