Published: Wed, June 13, 2018
Health Care | By Cedric Leonard

Toddlers are eating too much sugar: CDC study

Eating foods with added sugar can influence a child's food choices later in life.

"This is the first time we have looked at added sugar consumption among children less than 2 years old", stated Kirsten Herrick, a nutritional epidemiologist at the CDC and the study's leading author, for ABC News.

Moreover, the oldest children in the study, between the age of 19 to 23 months, consumed an average of around seven teaspoons of added sugar each day, which is more than the amount of sugar present in a Kit Kat bar, the findings of the study showed.

However, the study's results could be unintentionally biased as it was based on parents' answers, thus, it can't be taken as a 100% conclusive study.

Consumption of added sugar among Americans has been a widely discussed subject.

It turns out, the average toddler's intake of added sugar even exceeds the recommended amount of added sugar for adults. The earlier patient is introduces to high sugar consumption, the heavier the consequences he or she will face during the life. In a 24 hour window period, all the foods that the child was consuming was recorded. Artificial sweeteners with zero calories and natural sugars found in fruits, vegetables and milk weren't included.

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In the future, researchers will investigate the specific foods children consume their added sugar. The recommended daily limit of sugar for children age 2-19 is six teaspoons or less per day, and nine teaspoons or less for adults.

"Once kids start eating table food, they're often eating the same types of foods that Mom and Dad have in their diet, and other research has demonstrated that adults exceed recommendations for added sugar too", said Herrick.

About 85 percent of them were found to eat added sugar in a given day.

The researchers say that at present there are no specific recommendations for children under the age of 2 years in the U.S. government's 2015-2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans (DGA). The finding showed that the amount of added sugar consumed increased with the age of a child. The DGA will likely be updated in the 2020-2025 edition to include young children. Regardless of the recommendations, most people in the US eat more than this limit, research shows.

She also advised people to opt for healthier ways to satisfy a sweet tooth, such as choosing more foods like whole fruits and vegetables and less of pre-sweetened cereals or juices.

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