OBJECTIVE: To examine the dietary and activity correlates of sugar-sweetened beverage consumption by children in middle and high school.
METHODS: Data were obtained from a cross-sectional survey of 15 283 children in middle and high schools in Texas. Consumption of sodas and noncarbonated flavored and sports beverages (FSBs) were examined separately for their associations with the level of (1) unhealthy food (fried meats, French fries, desserts) consumption, (2) healthy food (vegetables, fruit, and milk) consumption, (3) physical activity including usual vigorous physical activity and participation in organized physical activity, and (4) sedentary activity, including hours spent watching television, using the computer, and playing video games.
RESULTS: For both genders, consumption of soda and FSBs was systematically associated with a number of unhealthy dietary practices and with sedentary behaviors. However, consumption of FSBs showed significant positive graded associations with several healthy dietary practices and level of physical activity, whereas soda consumption showed no such associations with healthy behaviors.
CONCLUSIONS: Consumption of FSBs coexists with healthy dietary and physical activity behaviors, which suggests popular misperception of these beverages as being consistent with a healthy lifestyle. Assessment and obesity-prevention efforts that target sugar-sweetened beverages need to distinguish between FSBs and sodas.
- Accepted June 28, 2010.
- Copyright © 2010 by the American Academy of Pediatrics