Children consume too much added sugar: report

March 7, 2012

Hyattsville, MD – Approximately 16 percent of the total number of calories consumed by children and adolescents in the United States between 2005 and 2008 came from added sugars, according to a data brief (.pdf file) from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s National Center for Health Statistics.

Researchers analyzed data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, which collected information about children from 2 to 19 years old via at-home interviews, physical examinations and laboratory tests.

Researchers noted that boys consumed more calories from added sugars than girls, and more added-sugar calories came from foods rather than beverages. For both beverages and foods, however, the majority of added sugars were consumed at home.

The 2010 Dietary Guidelines recommend limiting total intake of “discretionary” calories, which include added sugars and solid fats, to 5-15 percent of daily caloric intake, according to the report,  which was published Feb. 29.