Last updated on: 7/27/2018 | Author:

What Do Teens Drink? High School Student Beverage Consumption by Race and Sex

As of spring 2010, milk remains the most popular teen beverage after water except among black teens where it ranks behind water, fruit juice, and soda. The chart below shows the percentage of high school students who drank a serving of each selected beverage one or more times per day over a one week period. Data and methodology are from the Centers for Disease Control’s June 17, 2011 report.
BEVERAGES Water Milk Fruit Juice Soda Sports Drinks Other Sweetened Drinks Coffee or Tea Diet Soda Energy Drink
For example   Unflavored milk 100% fruit juice with no added sugar Coke, Pepsi, or Sprite Gatorade or PowerAid Flavored milk or lemonade Coffee, coffee drinks, or tea Diet Coke, Diet Pepsi, or Sprite Zero Red Bull or Monster
Female 71.8% 35.0% 26.5% 20.3% 11.1% 16.3% 15.7% 7.4% 3.4%
Male 72.9% 48.9% 33.9% 28.4% 21.1% 17.6% 14.1% 6.8% 6.6%
White 75.7% 46.6% 27.4% 24.0% 13.5% 15.5% 16.1% 7.9% 3.3%
Black 63.5% 29.3% 35.6% 32.0% 25.6% 24.5% 12.4% 7.5% 8.7%
Hispanic 69.2% 39.1% 33.6% 22.8% 17.5% 16.1% 12.5% 6.0% 6.7%
TOTAL 72.4% 42.0% 30.2% 24.3% 16.1% 16.9% 14.8% 7.1% 5.0%
Editor’s Note: The information on this page was based on data from the 2010 National Youth Physical Activity and Nutrition Study (NYPANS), as presented in the CDC report “Physical Activity Levels of High School Students – United States, 2010.” As of July 27, 2018, we have been unable to find a more recent version of the study and are therefore unable to update the data presented above. Current information about high school students’ beverage consumption is available on the CDC’s “High School YRBS (Youth Risk Behavior Surveillance System)” website.


“To determine the extent to which U.S. adolescents consume different types of beverages and variations in consumption by sex and race/ethnicity, CDC analyzed data from the 2010 National Youth Physical Activity and Nutrition Study (NYPANS). NYPANS included a school-based survey conducted by CDC that measured physical activity and dietary behaviors among a nationally representative sample of students in grades 9–12…

The survey used a three-stage cluster sample design to obtain cross-sectional data representative of public- and private-school students in grades 9–12 in all 50 states and the District of Columbia. Students completed an anonymous, self-administered questionnaire in their classrooms during a regular class period during the spring of 2010. Data from 11,429 students were available for analysis…

Respondents were asked how many times during the 7 days before the survey they drank the following beverages: 100% fruit juices; regular soda or pop; diet soda or pop; regular sports drinks; energy drinks; other SSBs [sugar sweetened beverages]; coffee, coffee drinks, or any kind of tea; and plain water (i.e., water). Respondents also were asked how many glasses of milk they drank per day during the 7 days before the survey. Responses were divided into less than one time or glass per day versus one or more times or glasses per day (i.e., daily consumption). To calculate the percentage of students who drank any combination of SSBs during the 7 days before the survey, responses to questions on regular soda or pop, regular sports drinks, and other SSBs that indicated consumption of less than once a day were divided by seven to determine daily intake and then responses were summed.

Race/ethnicity data are presented only for non-Hispanic black, non-Hispanic white, and Hispanic students (who might be of any race); the numbers of students from other racial/ethnic groups were too small for meaningful analysis.”

Source: Centers for Disease Control (CDC), “ Physical Activity Levels of High School Students – United States, 2010, Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report, June 7, 2011