By Amy Norton, HealthDay Reporter
Nearly half of urban 5-year-olds consume soft drinks every day, their mothers say
FRIDAY, August 16, 2013 (HealthDay News) — Five-year-olds who drink soda every day may have more behavior problems than kids with soda-free diets, a new study of U.S. children suggests.
After looking at nearly 3,000 urban families, the researchers found that 5-year-olds' scores on a standard measure of aggression tended to climb along with their soft drink intake.
Kindergartners who downed four or more servings per day were particularly aggressive, based on mothers' reports. They were twice as likely as other kids to get into fights or destroy property, and also displayed more attention problems than children who didn't drink soda.
The findings were reported Aug. 16 in the Journal of Pediatrics.
Experts were quick to stress that none of this proves that soda, itself, is at fault.
"This is a correlation. We're not saying soda causes aggression," said lead researcher Shakira Suglia, an assistant professor of epidemiology at Columbia University's Mailman School of Public Health in New York City.
Still, Suglia added, there are already reasons to keep children from drinking sugar-laden and caffeinated sodas. "There's no nutritional benefit of soda for children," she said.
A child psychologist not involved in the research agreed. ...more