Eating meals and other foods from fast-food and full-service restaurants appears to be associated with increased caloric intake for children and adolescents, as well as a higher intake of sugar, total fat, saturated fat and sodium, according to a report published Online First by Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine, a JAMA Network publication.
Children and adolescents increasingly eat food away from home, particularly from fast-food outlets, and the upward trends in fast-food consumption have paralleled increasing obesity rates among children and adolescents, according to the study background.
Lisa M. Powell, Ph.D., and Binh T. Nguyen, M.A., of the University of Illinois at Chicago, examined the effects of eating at fast-food and full-service restaurants on total energy intake (similar to total caloric intake), diet quality and the consumption of sugar-sweetened beverages (SSBs), particularly soda, using data from the 2003-2008 National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES). The study included 4,717 children ages 2 to 11 years and 4,699 children ages 12 to 19 years.
The study suggests that eating at a fast-food restaurant was associated with a net increase in total daily energy intake of 126 kcal (kilocalories) for children and about 309 kcal for adolescents. Eating at a full-service restaurant also was associated with an increase of about 160 kcal for children and 267 kcal for adolescents, according to the results.
"Furthermore, restaurant consumption among children and adolescents was significantly related to higher nutrient intake of sugar, total fat, saturated fat and sodium. In particular, for example, fast-food consumption among adolescents increased sugar, total fat, saturated fat and sodium intake by approximately 13 percent, 22 percent, 25 percent and 17 percent of the daily reference levels of these respective nutrients," the authors note.
The results indicate that soda and SSB consumption also appeared to be "significantly higher" on days that children and adolescents ate from restaurants, particularly for adolescents. The authors suggest there were positive associations for protein intake at full-service restaurants among children and at both fast-food and full-service restaurants among adolescents.
"Overall, the findings of higher energy and SSB intake and poorer nutrient intake associated with consuming from restaurants suggest that public policies that aim to reduce restaurant consumption – such as increasing the relative costs of these purchases; limiting access through zoning, particularly around schools; limiting portion sizes; and limiting exposure to marketing – deserve serious consideration," the authors comment.
They conclude: "At the same time, regulatory and voluntary policies that aim to set standards for the nutritional content of meals obtained from restaurants are increasingly being implemented, and continued efforts are needed to improve and promote healthy food options in restaurants."
JAMA and Archives Journals: http://www.jamamedia.org
This press release was posted to serve as a topic for discussion. Please comment below. We try our best to only post press releases that are associated with peer reviewed scientific literature. Critical discussions of the research are appreciated. If you need help finding a link to the original article, please contact us on twitter or via e-mail.
Parents of baby with fatal mitochondrial disease say techniques being considered by select committee could prevent them having another seriously ill child
Ultrasound has been used to open the brain's protective sheath in people with aggressive brain tumours – to deliver chemo drugs directly to cancer cells
The World Health Organization says two vaccine candidates now undergoing small-scale tests of dosage and safety in people might be ready for broader deployment in Africa by early 2015.
Just because the Food and Drug Administration recalls a supplement because it contains dangerous substances, doesn't mean the product disappears from the market.
9 million new cases and 1.5 million deaths in 2013
A woman's biological clock may also tell her cellular time. The number of eggs a woman has shows how fast her cells are ageing and predicts her heart disease risk
Screening people as they cross borders never works well but stopping people leaving affected countries could have devastating consequences
Polish doctors used cells from patient's nose to heal spinal injury
Like any trench war, the fight to protect America's kids against disease is proceeding only inch by inch. A new report shows why there's reason for hope—and reason for worry
Decontaminating biohazard sites can be a tough job, but the hardest microbe to wash away may not be what you think