Most American Toddlers Eat More Than the Recommended Sugar Intake for Adults, Study Shows
14 June, 2018, 03:55
Almost 98 to 99 percent of the sugar consumed by 1- and 2-year-olds was added sugar.
Toddlers in the United States are eating too much sugar according to a new study conducted by the Center for Disease Control. Dr. Herrick said the easiest method of reducing added sugars in one's own and one's children's diets is to choose foods that do not contain added sugars such as fruits and vegetables.
It turns out, the average toddler's intake of added sugar even exceeds the recommended amount of added sugar for adults. Overweight children who continue to consume added sugar are more likely to become insulin resistant, a precursor to diabetes. The earlier patient is introduces to high sugar consumption, the heavier the consequences he or she will face during the life. High sugar consumption is bad for children specifically as it sets poor diet preferences that may lead to them developing bad nutritional choices later in life.
A representative study of toddlers showed that 99% of children aged between 19 to 23 months eat over seven teaspoons of added sugar each day on average.
The study is limited in some ways because sugar consumption was measured based on parent's memory of what their child ate during a short period of time. That's perhaps why, unlike the 2015-2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans, the 2020-2025 edition will include dietary recommendations for infants and toddlers under two.
How is added sugar different from natural sugar?Added sugar consumption rose with age. While around 60 percent of babies between ages 6 months to 11 months consumed an average of 1 teaspoon of added sugars, 98 percent of children aged between 12 to 18 months were consuming an average of 5.5 teaspoons of sugar a day.
The 2015 to 2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans state that sweetened beverages are the major source of added sugars in typical USA diets-in fact, they account for 47% of all added sugars consumed by Americans.
But most Americans exceed those limits. For adult men, the limit is 9 teaspoons or less of added sugar per day. She said that future studies are aiming at looking at the types of foods that are contributing to the excess sugar intake in kids as well. However, added sugars are considered less healthy because they change nutritional components of food and create additional calories. Factoring in added sugar taken with coffee, tea, and alcoholic beverages, the number gets bumped up to 47 percent. However, the scientists behind the study are now planning on analyzing the products with added sugar that kids usually consume.
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