Washington: Adolescents who eliminate sugar-sweetened beverages for one year gain less weight than those who don’t, a new study has shown.The new study sheds light on an effective intervention to help combat adolescent obesity.This is one of the first high-quality randomized control trials to examine the link between the consumption of sugar-sweetened beverages and their direct impact on weight and body mass index (BMI), as well as how a teen’s home environment impacts sugar-sweetened beverage consumption in general.The study, led by Cara Ebbeling and David Ludwig from the New Balance Foundation Obesity Prevention Center Boston Children’s Hospital, found that adolescents who received deliveries of non-caloric beverages for one year gained an average of 4 fewer pounds than their peers who continued to drink sugar-sweetened beverages.Within the two-year study, the one-year intervention also included motivational calls with parents, check-in visits with participants and written intervention messages to stop drinking sugar-sweetened beverages.The 224 study participants were overweight or obese 9th or 10th graders who regularly drank sugary beverages. The study intervention was designed to reduce consumption of these beverages.Researchers used a novel method of intervention: delivering non-caloric beverages to participants’ homes for participants and their families.During the year-long intervention, the experimental group of adolescents—who virtually eliminated consumption of sugary beverages—gained 4 fewer pounds and had essentially no BMI increase compared to the control group, which continued to drink sugar-sweetened beverages regularly.
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