Los Angeles, London, New Delhi, and Singapore (April 14, 2008) -- Despite studies that assert otherwise, 100% fruit juice consumption is not related to overweight in children, according to the authors of "A Review of the Relationship Between 100% Fruit Juice Consumption and Weight in Children and Adolescents" in the May/June issue of the American Journal of Lifestyle Medicine (AJLM), published by SAGE.
The statistics about overweight children are alarming. Over the past 20 years, there has been an increased prevalence of overweight and at-risk-for overweight in all ages and ethnic groups. In 2002, 10.3% of children 2-5 years of age were overweight, an increase from 7.2% in 1994. In males and females 12-17 years of age, waist circumference increased by 4.0% and 5.2%, respectively, between 1994 and 2004.
The article, authored by Carol E. O'Neil, PhD, MPH, LDN, RD, Louisiana State University, and Theresa A. Nicklas, DrPH, USDA/ARS Children's Nutrition Research Center, Baylor College of Medicine, examined 21 studies about a relationship between consumption of 100% fruit juice by children and adolescents and weight, and found "there is no systematic association between consumption of 100% fruit juice and overweight in children or adolescents."
"Health professionals and policy makers should be encouraged to objectively review the literature on all beverages and encourage consumption of healthful beverages including water, milk, and 100% fruit juice," according to the authors. "The data support the consumption of 100% fruit juice in moderate amounts, and this may be an important strategy to help children meet the current recommendations for fruit."
"The rising epidemic of overweight and obese children should be a cause for great concern amongst healthcare professionals and the public at large," said James M. Rippe, M.D., cardiologist and Editor in Chief of AJLM. "The findings that the consumption of 100% juice by children and adolescents is not associated with overweight is very important since 100% fruit juices are nutrient dense and their consumption represents an excellent way to help children meet the dietary guidelines for Americans. The article by O'Neil and Nicklas clears up misconceptions that many healthcare professionals and parents may have about this issue."
This article can be viewed for free for a limited time online at http://ajl.
The American Journal of Lifestyle Medicine publishes a broad range of articles intended to help primary care providers and other health professionals guide their patients to lead healthier lifestyles. The journal provides commentaries and research reviews on nutrition and diet, cardiovascular disease, obesity, anxiety and depression, sleep problems, metabolic disease, and more in a readable, immediately accessible, and usable format. Visit the journal online at http://ajl.
SAGE is a leading international publisher of journals, books, and electronic media for academic, educational, and professional markets. Since 1965, SAGE has helped inform and educate a global community of scholars, practitioners, researchers, and students spanning a wide range of subject areas including business, humanities, social sciences, and science, technology and medicine. A privately owned corporation, SAGE has principal offices in Los Angeles, London, New Delhi, and Singapore. www.sagepublications.com