Consumption of sugar-sweetened beverages and obesity in SNAP-eligible children and adolescents.Prim Care Diabetes. 2020 04; 14(2):181-185.PC
Low-income individuals who are eligible for nutrition assistance have been shown to consume a larger portion of their daily calories from beverages with added sugar. We examined the association between Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) participation and self-reported sugar sweetened beverage (SSB) consumption as well as the association between self-reported consumption of SSBs and overweight/obesity in low-income children.
Cross-sectional analysis of 1455 SNAP-eligible U.S. children, ages 2-17, who completed a questionnaire and physical examination during the 2009-2010 National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES).
SNAP-eligible children who received SNAP in the last month were more likely to drink soda in the last month [76.0% (2.2)] than those who did not receive benefits [70.5% (2.8)]. These children were also more likely to drink fruit drinks [74.8% (1.6) vs. 69.3% (3.1)]. Among youth in households receiving SNAP benefits, soda consumption in the past month was associated with a greater risk of obesity, particularly Hispanic youth [OR=1.93 (1.07, 3.50), p=0.0314] aged 2-5 [OR=2.71 (1.29, 5.69), p=0.0114]. Additionally, among youth in households receiving SNAP benefits, male children who consumed sugar-sweetened fruit drinks in the past month were significantly more likely to be overweight [3.13 (1.12, 8.73), p=0.0315] as compared to male peers who did not consume any sugar sweetened fruit drinks.
Among youth, SNAP recipients drink more SSBs than their eligible non-recipient peers. Our results indicate that certain populations of children receiving SNAP benefits and consuming SSBs are more likely to be overweight or obese when compared to their peers who receive SNAP benefits but do not consume SSBs.