United States toddlers are consuming too much sugar finds study

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Unfortunately, consuming these foods in excess starts when we are young, according to a new Centers for Disease Control and Prevention study. Kids eating too much sugar can develop obesity, high cholesterol, and elevated blood pressure.

Now, according to the CDC, all these pediatric illnesses are triggered by a higher added sugar consumption than normal in toddlers across the USA and the experts recommend parent to avoid feeding their children with products that are known to contain added sugar, such as sweetened cereals, candies, sweet sodas, fruity yogurts, and so on.

Last Updated: June 10, 2018.

The body processes sugars from foods such as fruits and chocolates in the same way-but the processed sugars in products like the latter are believed to be worse for our health.

The researchers analyzed data from 800 infants and toddlers between 6 and 23 months old in the 2011-2014 U.S. National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey. Since 1960, around 190,000 people have taken part in the study in total. In a 24 hour window period, all the foods that the child was consuming was recorded. In order to evaluate added sugar consumption, the researchers included any calorie-containing sugars such as high-fructose corn syrup but excluded naturally occurring sugars such as fruits. Zero-calorie sweeteners and sugars that are present naturally in foods were not counted. They also found that the amount and consumption went up dramatically as the child grew older. That rose to 98 percent among those babies 12 to 18 months, who averaged 5.5 teaspoons of added sugar a day. The finding came as a result of a study done on children between the ages of 6 and 23 months old.

Herrick said the findings could have implications for the upcoming revision of the Dietary Guidelines for Americans.

The latest nutritional guidelines for the US, which were updated in 2015 and will be reviewed in 2020, do not give recommendations for children under the age of two. But the advice for 2020 to 2025 will offer parents and carers tips on how to feed toddlers. At present the guidelines recommend using 6 teaspoons or less daily in individuals aged between 2 to 19 years and adult women and less than 9 teaspoons for adult men per day.

According to Herrick most adults are exceeding the recommended limits of sugar intake and this is reflected in the children of the household as well. Further studies are planned that will better evaluate the specific sources of added sugar children are eating.

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