Most Infants and Toddlers Consume Added Sugar

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On any given day, 85% of infants, toddlers aged 6 to 23 months had added sugar intake.
On any given day, 85% of infants, toddlers aged 6 to 23 months had added sugar intake.

HealthDay News — Most infants and toddlers aged 6 to 23 months consume added sugar, according to a study presented during Nutrition 2018, the annual meeting of the American Society for Nutrition, held from June 9 to 12 in Boston.

Kirsten Herrick, PhD, from the National Center for Health Statistics in Hyattsville, Maryland, and colleagues used a single 24-hour recall from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey 2011 to 2014 to estimate the prevalence and mean consumption of added sugars among 806 infants and toddlers aged 6 to 23 months. 

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The researchers found that on a given day, 85% of infants and toddlers had any consumption of added sugar. Sixty-one percent of infants aged 6 to 11 months consumed added sugars, compared with 98 and 99% of toddlers aged 12 to 18 and 19 to 23 months, respectively. For those aged 6 to 23 months, the mean added sugar consumption was 4.2 teaspoons. There was a significant increase in consumption by age, from 0.9 to 5.5 and 7.1 teaspoons for infants aged 6 to 11 months, and toddlers aged 12 to 18 and 19 to 23 months, respectively. Non-Hispanic white infants and toddlers consumed fewer teaspoons of added sugar compared with non-Hispanic blacks (3.8 vs 5.4 teaspoons).

"Our results show that added sugar consumption begins early in life and exceeds current recommendations," Herrick said in a statement.

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