It’s been quite a week. Several studies published recently give guidance about what is best to drink to ensure health and healty eating.
The first study looked at vegetable eating in preschoolers and found that children given water with their food were more likely to eat veggies than those offered juices or other sweetened beverages. What I really wish they’d studied was milk as an accompaniment! The study revealed quite dramatically that preschoolers who had water as their beverage ate a lot more veggies than those who had anything sweetened.
The other two studies focused on adults but are still interesting. Adults who drank soda pop with meals tended to eat foods higher in calories and salt than those who drank other beverages. This has implications for children too.
Since many children begin drinking pop at a young age, it may compound the already challenging reality of obesity. Drinking a pop means you are more likely to choose higher calorie foods and ones much higher in sodium (think combo meal at a fast food joint). Children also choose to model their parents and even if parents are of a normal weight, if they are drinking a lot of pop their children will want to as well. Kids will have a hard time doing as you say but not as you do as they get older and can make their own choices.
The third study was reassuring. It revealed that adults who drink a couple of cups or more of coffee daily (decaf or caffeinated) lived longer than noncoffee drinkers. The researchers had to control for the fact that coffee drinkers tend to smoke at higher rates and have other unhealthy behaviors, but if you controlled for those additional factors, coffee drinkers lived longer. It isn’t clear which substances in coffee contribute to longevity, but as a couple-of-cups-a-day gal myself, I was delighted to read this!