myDocType=Article myDocSubType=70 copyrightYear= 2017--> Healthier Kids
Beverages such as soda and juice boxes also greatly contribute to the childhood obesity epidemic. It is not uncommon for a 32 ounce soda to be marketed toward children, which contains approximately 400 calories. The consumption of soda by children has increased throughout the last 20 years by 300 percent. Scientific studies have documented a 60 percent increase risk of obesity for every regular soda consumed per day. Box drinks, juice, fruit drinks and sports drinks present another significant problem. These beverages contain a significant amount of calories and it is estimated that 20 percent of children who are currently overweight are overweight due to excessive caloric intake from beverages.
Pediatricians may need to offer practical information about how parents can obtain the kinds of nutritious foods recommended for children. "For example, in communities where access to fresh vegetables and fruits is limited, informing families about farmers' markets or local grocery stores that have a good supply of frozen or canned vegetables and fruits" may help, the guidelines say. "Pediatricians should also become familiar with federal food assistance programs, such as the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) and the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)."