Healthy Children’s Meal Beverages

The Serve Kids Better Legislation (SB 1846) is now Public Act 102-0529! Many kids are consuming 2-3 times the recommended amount of sugar every day. This can negatively impact their weight, mood and behavior today, while increasing their risk of heart disease and type 2 diabetes later in life – major health issues that disproportionately impact children of color in our communities. IAPO helped to advocate for the Serve Kids Better legislation to help ensure healthy beverage options are available for kids meals at Illinois restaurants.

The new law ensures restaurants provide unsweetened water, milk or 100% juice as the default beverages in children’s meals in Illinois. Among the top-50 restaurant chains that included beverages as part of their children’s meals in 2016, two-thirds include sugary drinks on their children’s menus. This law will go into effect on January 1, 2022 and will help ensure healthy choices are available and included for free as part of the default children’s meal package.

To learn more, contact Janna Simon, Program Director at 312-786-5365.