Childhood obesity is epidemic in this country. Sugar-sweetened beverages are commonly given to children, sometimes when they are very young. Doctors at USC Keck School of Medicine evaluated the effects of when sugar-sweetened beverages are introduced.

The caregivers of nearly 1,500 Hispanic infants were contacted to determine how long the babies had been breastfed and the age of introduction of sugar-sweetened beverages into their diets. The height and weight of the children were also recorded. From the data, the researchers determined that the longer the babies were breastfed and the later sugar-sweetened beverages were introduced, the less the chances the child would be obese as a toddler.

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From issue: 28/01-02