Sunday, February 06, 2005

Feeding your kid 17 tsp. sugar a day

Here is a quote from about a study regarding children's intake of added sugar:

"To find out the effects added sugars had on kids' diets the researchers analyzed the data of over 5,000 children ranging in age from 2 to 5. They focused on the amount of added sugars the children consumed in relation to their important nutrient intake. The results of the study confirmed that the more added sugars kids ate, the less they benefited from key nutrients such as fiber, protein, calcium, iron and folate.

"The most disconcerting results were the breakdown of added sugar intake. The study revealed that in the 2- to 3-year-old group, average consumption of added sugar was around 14 teaspoons a day. This number jumped to 17 daily teaspoons a day among 4-year-olds and 5-year-olds."

The study can be found at: Journal of Pediatrics January 2005;146(1):105-11

Dr. Mercola gives a few very good recommendations for your children:
1. Increase physical activity
2. Eliminate soda
3. Decrease or eliminate TV time

He then says:
"TV is one of the most pernicious influences on health and I couldn't recommend stopping it more strongly. Not only will it decrease your child's activity level, but also it will expose them to commercials promoting worthless foods. Parents need to step in and set guidelines as to how much TV their children should watch and also encourage them to participate in sports or other physical activities instead of watching TV.

"Interestingly, cutting out the TV will also decrease their risk of going into debt."

Getting back to food. I am well aware of the fact that many parents have tried to give their kids healthy food but the kids prefer the less healthy alternatives. This is not easy but it is not an impossible situation, most of the time. I will write more about this later but in short, keep trying. That is pretty much the key to success. Try the same food a few times. Try different foods. If the kid didn't like a food a few months ago, that doesn't mean that now he still won't like it.

Keep trying!