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The GRECO (Greek childhood obesity) study: sources of free sugars in children’s diet and the identification of associated lifestyle patterns.

14 / 11 / 16

The Greek Childhood Obesity (GRECO) study is a nationwide sample of 3089 children aged 10-12 years. Researchers collected anthropometric data and information on diet and physical activity habits. They found children consumed an average of 11.2% energy from free sugars, and 44.2% of children consumed greater than the WHO 10% free sugars target. Free sugars intake was not associated with overweight or obesity. The two lifestyle patterns associated with high free sugars intake were: (1) higher intake of sweets, fast foods, fries, sugared drinks, foods from outside the home, and eating in front of a screen; and (2) higher intake of fruits, 100% fruit juices, vegetables, legumes, legumes and honey/jam. They concluded high free sugars intake was associated with lifestyle patterns rather than single foods and public health programs need to promote healthy diet and lifestyle patterns in children.

Farajian P, Risvas G, Panagiotakos DB, Zampelas A. Public Health Nutr 2016;19(13):2326 https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/27515790