The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have issued a report on sugar consumption rates of teens and children and it has a few surprising findings.
Looking at data compiled between 2005 and 2008, the study found that American children, on average, obtain 16% of their daily calories from sugar, which exceeds the recommendation of the 2010 Dietary Guidelines that “discretionary calories” (added sugars and solid fats) exceed no more than 5-15% of caloric intake.
While it’s no surprise to anyone that today’s kids are consuming too much sugar, I was particularly interested in three of the study’s findings:
- Earlier studies have laid the blame for excess sugar consumption on soda and other sweetened beverages, but this study found that 59% of the added sugar calories came from foods compared with 41% from beverages.
- Kids were getting more of their sugar from foods and beverages consumed at home than outside the home. Specifically, a little more than half of the added sugars calories came from beverages consumed at home (54%), while nearly two-thirds of the added sugars in foods were consumed at home (66%). So this means the majority of the sugar consumption was taking place with (presumably) some parental oversight.
- There was no relationship found between poverty and sugar consumption. Kids across the economic spectrum were consuming about the same amount of sugar.
A senior author of the report was quoted elsewhere as laying the blame for kids’ excessive sugar consumption on processed foods, which can contain high amounts of sweetener.
Pretty timely after yesterday’s discussion of Kellogg’s Krave cereal, no?
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