To the editors:
Bottled water and its role on campuses has become a topic of great interest—and sometimes, heated debate. The Crimson’s Oct. 13, 2010, editorial “Bottle It Up,” which advocated for a ban of this healthful beverage choice, showed that Harvard University is no exception. I hope to provide some much needed clarification on the issue from a viewpoint you may not have heard yet.
In an age when American adults consume 450 calories a day from beverages and 68 percent of those 20 years old and older are classified as overweight or obese, bottled water provides a healthy choice when tap water is not accessible, preferred, or convenient. But if bottled water is not available, consumer research shows that more than one-half of people would choose soda instead. This means a ban on bottled water would have the unintended consequence of driving people to consume more unhealthy beverages that add calories and sugar to their diets.