Health Alert 12-10: Children and Salt

By: Angela Howard
By: Angela Howard

A new study finds what children eat affects their choice of drinks, and how many calories they consume. Doctors say limiting salt in our diets is a good thing. That goes for our children's diets as well.

Too much salt can cause a lot of health issues, including high blood pressure, along with kidney and heart problems, even in little ones.
Now a study in this week's journal of Pediatrics, finds that salt may play a greater role in what kinds of drinks kids want -- especially sugar-sweetened beverages, like sodas.

Researchers looked at more than 42-hundred Australian children, between the ages of 2 to 16 and found sixty-two percent of those youngsters reported drinking sugar sweetened beverages.

They also found a link between salt consumption and sweet drinks, noting that children who ate more salt, drank more sweetened liquids.
They noted for every one gram of salt consumed a day, a child also consumed 17 grams more of sweetened beverages than those children who did not eat a lot of salt.

The study also showed that children who drank more than one serving of a sugar sweetened beverage each day were 26 percent more likely to be overweight or obese.

Scientists concluded that if kids stop eating a lot of salt, they may reduce how many sugar-sweetened beverages they drink, cutting down on their daily calorie intake.

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