Young girls who drink soda have less healthy diets through adolescence than their peers who do not drink soda, according to a Penn State study.
The ten-year study showed that girls who drank soda at age five had diets that were less likely to meet nutritional standards for the duration of the study, which ended at age 15. Girls who did not drink soda at age five did not meet certain nutritional requirements, but their diets were healthier.
The difference between the two groups in nutrient intake is "not just because of what they are consuming, but because of what they are not consuming," said Laura Fiorito, postdoctoral fellow in Penn State's Center for Child Obesity Research.
Milk intake differed greatly between the two groups -- soda drinkers drank far less milk than non-soda drinkers -- and milk has all of the nutrients that differed between the groups except fiber. At age five, non-soda drinkers consumed 10 to 11 ounces of milk daily, while soda drinkers had less than seven ounces.
"Adequate nutrient intake is important for optimal health and growth," the researchers reported in a recent issue of the Journal of the American Dietetic Association.
For example, low calcium intake is associated with increased risk of bone fractures and higher added sugar is associated with dental problems and the development of several chronic diseases, such as type 2 diabetes.
The Institute of Medicine, part of the National Academy of Sciences, recommends that girls between age 14 and 18 receive at least 65 milligrams of vitamin C daily. In this study, soda drinkers fell short at just 55 milligrams daily, while non-soda drinkers exceeded the recommendation at 70.5 milligrams daily.
Although soda drinkers had less healthy diets, both groups failed to meet recommendations for certain nutrients. The Institute recommends that girls age 14 to 18 receive at least 1,300 milligrams of calcium daily. At age 15, sod
|Contact: A'ndrea Elyse Messer|