Published: Wed, June 13, 2018
Medical | By

Toddlers Consume More 'Added Sugar' Than The Recommended Amount For Adults

Toddlers Consume More 'Added Sugar' Than The Recommended Amount For Adults

Even more, the trend is aggravating as they grow up, says the CDC. That's more than the amount found in a Snickers bar.

To arrive at her findings, Herrick assessed data from more than 800 infants and toddlers, aged between six and 23 months old, who took part in the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey between 2011 and 2014.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found, on average, toddlers eat more than seven teaspoons of added sugar a day.

However, the study has limitations because the added sugar consumption was measured basis the memory of parents of what their kid ate.

But that affinity for the sweet stuff starts as early as infancy, with some babies consuming added sugar that exceeds maximum levels recommended for adults, USA researchers report. The research titled "Consumption of added sugars among US infants aged 6-23 months, 2011-2014" was presented at the American Society for Nutrition annual meeting in Boston on June 10. "Our results show that added sugar consumption begins early in life and exceeds current recommendations".

There is no chemical difference between natural sugars in fruits, vegetables, and milk, and processed sugars.

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

"The easiest way to reduce added sugars in your own diet and your kids' diet is to choose foods that you know don't have them, like fresh fruits and vegetables", Herrick suggested. Almost 98 to 99 percent of the sugar consumed by 1- and 2-year-olds was added sugar.

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

Added sugars include brown sugar, corn sweetener, corn syrup, dextrose, fructose, glucose, high-fructose corn syrup, honey, lactose, malt syrup, maltose, molasses, raw sugar, and sucrose, according to the CDC.

The researchers say that at present there are no specific recommendations for children under the age of 2 years in the USA government's 2015-2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans (DGA). However soon to be developed is the 2020-2025 edition that will outline the recommended amounts of sugars and fats children under 2 should consume. 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.

But most Americans exceed those limits. Past studies have pointed towards breakfast cereals, cakes and desserts, sugary drinks, yogurt and candy as the biggest culprits.

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