Mothers' child-feeding practices are associated with children's sugar-sweetened beverage intake.J Nutr. 2015 Apr; 145(4):806-12.JN
Sugar-sweetened beverage (SSB) intake is a substantial source of energy in the diet of US children.
We examined the associations between mothers' child-feeding practices and SSB intake among 6-y-old children.
We analyzed data from the Year 6 Follow-up of the Infant Feeding Practices Study II in 1350 US children aged 6 y. The outcome variable was child's SSB intake. The exposure variables were 4 child-feeding practices of mothers: setting limits on sweets or junk foods, regulating their child's favorite food intake to prevent overconsumption, pressuring their child to eat enough, and pressuring their child to "clean the plate." We used multinomial logistic regression and controlled for child and maternal characteristics. Analyses were stratified on child weight status.
The consumption of SSBs ≥1 time/d was observed among 17.1% of underweight/normal-weight children and in 23.2% of overweight/obese children. Adjusted ORs (aORs) of consuming SSBs ≥1 time/d (vs. no SSB consumption) were significantly lower in children whose mothers reported setting limits on sweets/junk foods (aOR: 0.29; 95% CI: 0.15, 0.58 for underweight/normal-weight children; aOR: 0.16; 95% CI: 0.03, 0.79 for overweight/obese children). SSB intake was higher among underweight/normal-weight children whose mothers reported trying to keep the child from eating too much of their favorite foods (aOR: 2.03; 95% CI: 1.25, 3.29). Mothers' tendency to pressure their children to consume more food or to "clean the plate" was not associated with child's SSB intake.
SSBs were commonly consumed by young children. The odds of daily SSB intake were lower among children whose mothers set limits on sweets/junk foods regardless of child's weight but were higher among underweight/normal-weight children whose mothers restricted the child's favorite food intake. Future studies can investigate the impact of alternatives to restrictive feeding practices that could reduce children's SSB intake.