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City Launches New Campaign Against Sugary Drinks

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) -- The New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene on Monday launched a new anti-obesity campaign, focusing on the risks posed by sugary drinks.

The ads focus on the potential health risks of consuming sugary drinks for both children and adults. The department said sugary drinks can bring on obesity, which in turn can lead to diabetes and heart disease.

The ads are an expansion of an existing Health Department program to fight obesity. They urge New Yorkers to replace sugary drinks with water, seltzer, unsweetened teas, fat-free milk, and fresh fruit.

They will be on the air for the next three weeks, and on subway cars through January, the department said.

Department Deputy Commissioner for Health Promotion and Disease Prevention Dr. Susan Kansagra told 1010 WINS the city's efforts to curb obesity seem to be working.

"Compared to five or six years ago, there's been close to a 20 percent decline in sugary drink consumption over the last few years, so we think that that is a positive step in the right direction, and we think that New Yorkers are turning to healthier beverage options as a result of some of these educational campaigns," she said.

But a campaign by Mayor Michael Bloomberg to make supersized sugary drinks illegal his run into roadblocks.

Two lower courts have blocked Bloomberg's efforts to ban the sale of sugary drinks larger than 16 ounces in some restaurants, stadiums, movie theaters and some other places.

New York's Court of Appeals -- the state's highest court -- announced Thursday that it has agreed to hear the case early next year.

Mayor-elect Bill de Blasio has said he supports Bloomberg's efforts to ban super-sized sodas.

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