Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Soft drinks consumption may increase the risk of childhood obesity

12.05.2005


Obesity is one of the biggest threats to child health. Genetics, decreases in physical activity, increases in television watching, and consumption of fast food are factors that have led to an increase of childhood obesity in the United States. Excessive consumption of sugar sweetened drinks may also be a key factor. A commentary in the May issue of The Journal of Pediatrics reviews prior research to provide perspective about the role of soft drinks in childhood obesity.



Robert Murray, MD and colleagues from Ohio State University, University of Vermont, and University of California San Diego reviewed articles, press releases, statements, and editorials from researchers and from representatives in the soft drink industry. Although no single factor can be cited as the sole cause, many of the articles showed a correlation between soft drink consumption and the risk of childhood obesity.

Dr. Murray points out that "the typical teen consumes approximately two-12 ounce cans of soft drinks per day, containing 300 calories and 20 teaspoons of sugar." Although current guidelines recommend a limit of 10% of daily calories from added sugars, they actually account for 18-20% of children’s daily calories. Because even small amounts of sweetened drinks at home or at school can add up, soft drinks and sweetened fruit drinks account for 43% of these total added sugars. American children consume one-third of their daily calories from nutrient-poor, energy-dense snack foods, which makes nutritional deficiencies another area of concern. Children seem to be choosing soft drinks or sweetened fruit drinks instead of milk, which can decrease their levels of protein, calcium, zinc, and vitamins A and C. The American Academy of Pediatrics Committee on School Health has stated that the consumption of soft drinks in schools can lead to obesity. Despite this, one study showed that out of 523 school districts, 50% had a contract with a soft drink company; two-thirds of those districts were given incentives by the soft drink company, and nearly 80% received a percentage of the soft drink sales. Dr. Murray recommends that schools should "strengthen existing programs such as the school breakfast program, the national school lunch program, classroom nutrition instruction, daily physical fitness instruction, intramural sports, and after-school programs," instead of setting up contracts and marketing with soft drink companies.


Children can compensate for the added calories from occasional soft drinks by choosing more nutritious, lower calorie drink options throughout the rest of the day and increasing their amount of physical activity. Schools should concentrate on providing more nutritious lower calorie beverage choices in their vending machines such as milk, water, and 100% fruit and vegetable juices. Dr. Murray has suggested that "altering the energy (calorie) gap by 100 calories a day--which, ironically, is the equivalent of one 8-oz. serving of a sweetened soft drink--would prevent excessive weight gain in most Americans." The prevention of childhood obesity is of great importance. It has been estimated that 25% of obese children are already showing signs of glucose intolerance and "a child who is diagnosed with type II diabetes mellitus at age 10 years may lose between 17 and 26 life-years to the disease." Although no single factor should be designated as the scapegoat for childhood obesity, decreasing soft drink consumption, especially in schools, can help reduce the risk.

The commentary is "Are soft drinks a scapegoat for childhood obesity?" by Robert Murray, MD, Barbara Frankowski, MD, PhD, and Hoard Taras, MD, FAAP. The article appears in The Journal of Pediatrics, Volume 146, Number 5 (May 2005), published by Elsevier.

Monica Helton | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.cchmc.org
http://www.elsevierhealth.com/

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht One gene closer to regenerative therapy for muscular disorders
01.06.2017 | Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center

nachricht The gut microbiota plays a key role in treatment with classic diabetes medication
01.06.2017 | University of Gothenburg

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Can we see monkeys from space? Emerging technologies to map biodiversity

An international team of scientists has proposed a new multi-disciplinary approach in which an array of new technologies will allow us to map biodiversity and the risks that wildlife is facing at the scale of whole landscapes. The findings are published in Nature Ecology and Evolution. This international research is led by the Kunming Institute of Zoology from China, University of East Anglia, University of Leicester and the Leibniz Institute for Zoo and Wildlife Research.

Using a combination of satellite and ground data, the team proposes that it is now possible to map biodiversity with an accuracy that has not been previously...

Im Focus: Climate satellite: Tracking methane with robust laser technology

Heatwaves in the Arctic, longer periods of vegetation in Europe, severe floods in West Africa – starting in 2021, scientists want to explore the emissions of the greenhouse gas methane with the German-French satellite MERLIN. This is made possible by a new robust laser system of the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT in Aachen, which achieves unprecedented measurement accuracy.

Methane is primarily the result of the decomposition of organic matter. The gas has a 25 times greater warming potential than carbon dioxide, but is not as...

Im Focus: How protons move through a fuel cell

Hydrogen is regarded as the energy source of the future: It is produced with solar power and can be used to generate heat and electricity in fuel cells. Empa researchers have now succeeded in decoding the movement of hydrogen ions in crystals – a key step towards more efficient energy conversion in the hydrogen industry of tomorrow.

As charge carriers, electrons and ions play the leading role in electrochemical energy storage devices and converters such as batteries and fuel cells. Proton...

Im Focus: A unique data centre for cosmological simulations

Scientists from the Excellence Cluster Universe at the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität Munich have establised "Cosmowebportal", a unique data centre for cosmological simulations located at the Leibniz Supercomputing Centre (LRZ) of the Bavarian Academy of Sciences. The complete results of a series of large hydrodynamical cosmological simulations are available, with data volumes typically exceeding several hundred terabytes. Scientists worldwide can interactively explore these complex simulations via a web interface and directly access the results.

With current telescopes, scientists can observe our Universe’s galaxies and galaxy clusters and their distribution along an invisible cosmic web. From the...

Im Focus: Scientists develop molecular thermometer for contactless measurement using infrared light

Temperature measurements possible even on the smallest scale / Molecular ruby for use in material sciences, biology, and medicine

Chemists at Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz (JGU) in cooperation with researchers of the German Federal Institute for Materials Research and Testing (BAM)...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Plants are networkers

19.06.2017 | Event News

Digital Survival Training for Executives

13.06.2017 | Event News

Global Learning Council Summit 2017

13.06.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Quantum thermometer or optical refrigerator?

23.06.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

A 100-year-old physics problem has been solved at EPFL

23.06.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

Equipping form with function

23.06.2017 | Information Technology

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>