Julia Prescott
December 02, 2015 7:59 pm

Hold onto your flapjacks, clutch onto those chicken fingers — IHOP and Applebee’s customers are in for a big, big surprise.

Starting in the not-so-distant future, sodas will be shunned from both of the chain restaurant’s children’s menus.

I’ll hold for a moment of silence (take as much time as you need).

We’ve known for decades of the negative effect that soda has on your body. A quick search for the “Coca Cola Tooth Test” results in several articles as well as YouTube videos with users demonstrating the harmful consequences of dropping a tooth in a bowl of Coca Cola for longer than a day. But for years that seemed like one angle of the argument, that it was understood that soda is bad for you. Yet it remains in easy-access all around the world.

That is, until now.

According to the Center for Science in the Public Interest, the two dining chains will be taking soda off its kids’ menu, and can only be available for younger customers when the parents specifically ask for it. Though this isn’t as drastic as an all-ages prohibition on the sugary beverages, it’s still a big step in the right direction for lowering child obesity rates nationwide. According to World Health Organization, the number of children across the world (ages 0-5 years) went from 32 million in 1990, to 42 million in 2013. WHO reports, “If current trends continue the number of overweight or obese infants and young children globally will increase to 70 million by 2025.”

While Applebee’s and IHOP are the first fast-casual chains to implement this change, they aren’t the first restaurants to make this move. Subway, Wendy’s, McDonald’s, Burger King, Panera and Dairy Queen all promote healthier beverage options like milk boxes and juice for its pint-sized customers.

Still no word yet on whether or not they’ll granola-fy their kiddie chocolate chip pancakes, though. That still clocks in at about 21 grams of sugar. But for now, we’ll just rejoice in the little victories.

(Image via Shutterstock)

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