First Presenter's Institution

Georgia Southern University

Second Presenter's Institution

Georgia Southern University

Third Presenter's Institution

Georgia Southern University

Fourth Presenter's Institution

NA

Fifth Presenter's Institution

NA

Strand #1

Mental & Physical Health

Relevance

Sugar consumption in the United States has seen an increase of roughly fivefold over the years. In regards to adolescents, data taken showed that children and adolescents consume approximately 16% of their daily calories from added sugars. Excessive sugar intake can have long-term detrimental side effects on the youth. A myriad of adverse health effects has been linked to high sugar consumption such as obesity, diabetes, and cardiovascular disease (CVD).

Brief Program Description

With sugar consumption in the youth on the rise, many people have turned their heads towards this epidemic in response to the many side effects associated with excess sugar in the diet. Roughly 75% of all foods and beverages have some form of added sugar. It’s difficult to find a safe product for your child to eat without running into something like high fructose corn syrup (HFCS). Sugar-sweetened beverage intake has increased nearly 500% since 1950. This excessive sugar intake is very taxing on the body and may lead to long term impairments if not properly regulated. A study documented that drinking two 16-oz sugar-sweetened beverages every day over a time span of 6 months induced features of metabolic syndrome and fatty liver. Chronic conditions such as diabetes and CVD may occur if the consumption of sugar remains too high.

Summary

Added sugar is a huge component of many processed foods, upwards of up to 75%. It is estimated that the average American citizen consumes more than 120 lbs. of sugar per year. These foods and beverages are often easily affordable and very palatable so parents will add it to their shopping list without considering the possible side effects of consuming them. A survey documented an increase in gallons of sugar-sweetened beverages consumed per year from 9.5 in 1994 to 11.4 in 2010. For many, it is due to a simple lack of knowledge; a sort of inherent ignorance that was never learned while growing up. For others, it stems from a lack of care or an inadequate income. Parents will purchase these addictive products and let their children ravage them to the point of becoming sick. With sugar consumption on the rise, care must be taken to understand the short- and long-term side effects of a high sugar consumption in adolescents.

One study revealed that sugar accounts for approximately 16% of the total daily caloric intake in children and adolescents. Studies have shown that total sugar intake should account for, at most, only 10% of the total daily calories consumed. This can account for over 200 calories consumed simply from sugar which is nearly twice the upper recommended level of intake. This can lead to myriad of health issues in not only the short-run, but also in a long-term perspective. High sugar intake is typically linked to obesity and other chronic conditions. If not properly managed, these problems can potentially pose a life threatening issue.

A high sugar intake correlates to an increased caloric intake. This increase in caloric intake can lead to weight gain if not properly managed. A study documented an average weight gain of 1.55 kg over a 1-year time period in individuals with the highest intake of sugar-sweetened beverages. The same study also showed that sugar and cereal consumption, paired with physical inactivity, is a huge predictor of obesity. Children who become obese tend to remain obese throughout adulthood, making the problem exponentially harder to deal with due to the aging process and the body’s hormonal mechanisms slowing down. Obesity is linked to diabetes and cardiovascular disease which can often be life threatening given the scenario. If consumption of sugar is not properly regulated in children, these rampant illnesses can thrive and cause severe long-term impairment.

Excess sugar consumption in the form of sugar-sweetened beverages has been linked to increased postprandial blood glucose levels and a decrease in insulin sensitivity. An exposure to this over a long amount of time can lead to diabetes. These beverages have also been linked to a decrease in satiety which ultimately leads to in subsequent overeating. This is another factor that increases the total daily caloric intake of the adolescent population and leads to rapid weight gain. One study showed roughly two-thirds of United States youth consume one sugar-sweetened beverage per day. The odds of becoming obese reportedly increases 1.6 times with every additional can of sugar-sweetened beverage that is consumed beyond the daily recommended intake in the adolescent population.

Obesity not only leads to an increased risk for diabetes and cardiovascular disease, but also has a potential to lead to cognitive impairment. One study showed that obese individuals have the tendency to perform worse on cognitive functioning tasks. The source comes from the compression on the blood circulation running to the brain. This circulation is restricted, resulting in less blood flow to the brain which impairs cognitive functioning.

Evidence

Sugar consumption needs to be monitored in adolescents so that overconsumption doesn’t occur. Excess sugar in the diet can result in cardiovascular disease, diabetes, obesity, and impaired cognitive function. Sugar consumption occurs mostly in the form of sugar-sweetened beverages, such as soda. Parents and youth need to be educated on the side effects of excessive sugar consumption so that these problems can become less of an epidemic. Studies have documented a decrease in body weight of 0.80 kg with a decrease in daily sugar consumption.

Format

Poster Presentation

Biographical Sketch

Michael Hinson is a Georgia Southern University undergraduate majoring in Exercise Science. He is currently performing research under the guidance of Dr. Gregory Ryan and Dr. Nicholas Murray. His research with Dr. Gregory Ryan includes measured physiological adaptations over time in collegiate women’s soccer players. His research under Dr. Nicholas Murray is involved in concussions within the general population.

Ashley Passantino is a pre vet biology major at Georgia Southern University demanding a minor in nutrition. She also participates in biology research outside of her normal curriculum.

Dr. Padmini Shankar is a Professor of Nutrition and Food Science at Georgia Southern University.

Presentation Year

2018

Start Date

3-6-2018 4:00 PM

End Date

3-6-2018 5:30 PM

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Mar 6th, 4:00 PM Mar 6th, 5:30 PM

Effects of Excessive Sugar Consumption in Adolescents

With sugar consumption in the youth on the rise, many people have turned their heads towards this epidemic in response to the many side effects associated with excess sugar in the diet. Roughly 75% of all foods and beverages have some form of added sugar. It’s difficult to find a safe product for your child to eat without running into something like high fructose corn syrup (HFCS). Sugar-sweetened beverage intake has increased nearly 500% since 1950. This excessive sugar intake is very taxing on the body and may lead to long term impairments if not properly regulated. A study documented that drinking two 16-oz sugar-sweetened beverages every day over a time span of 6 months induced features of metabolic syndrome and fatty liver. Chronic conditions such as diabetes and CVD may occur if the consumption of sugar remains too high.