Good News About Juice and Kids

Ernie NeffOrange Juice

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A study shows early juice consumption is an important determinant of overall fruit intake and better diet quality in later childhood years.

Consumption of 100 percent fruit juice by preschoolers is associated with beneficial effects on whole fruit intake and diet quality, according to a recent study. The study by researchers with the Boston University School of Medicine also found that fruit juice consumption had no adverse effect on body mass index (BMI) during childhood and into adolescence. BMI is a measure of body fat based on height and weight.

The researchers noted that some earlier investigators have suggested that to address the rising rates of obesity, fruit juice should be eliminated from federal nutrition programs. “However, there is little evidence to support a link between juice consumption and childhood obesity,” the study’s authors wrote. “The role of fruit juice in pediatric dietary guidelines continues to be controversial, particularly with respect to concerns about unhealthy dietary habits and the potential promotion of excessive weight gain,” they added.

The authors concluded that their study “adds important evidence addressing the current controversies surrounding the consumption of fruit juice during the preschool years.” They added that it “demonstrates that early juice consumption is an important determinant of overall fruit intake and better diet quality in later childhood years without having any adverse effect on energy balance.”

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The study provides important new evidence that should be considered in the development of future guidelines on fruit juice consumption in early childhood, the researchers stated.

The data in the study were previously collected from 100 3- to 6-year-old children enrolled in the Framingham Children’s Study and subsequently followed for 10 years.  

The Boston University School of Medicine authors are Li Wan, Phani Deepti Jakkilinki, Martha R. Singer, M. Loring Bradlee and Lynn L. Moore.

See the full report here.

In related news, researchers found that OJ has become one of the main products that consumers have turned to during the COVID-19 pandemic. Learn more.

Source: BMC

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