The Brighton Report – March 4

The Brighton Report is Brighton Training Group’s weekly news show. It’s a fast paced run down of the three most notable news stories of the week in child nutrition, school nutrition, CACFP, SFSP and other child nutrition programs.

Text Version of The Brighton Report: 

  1. A new study sheds light on the link between ADHD and obesity
  2. Americans need to cut back on sugar intake
  3. Researchers find a novel way for kids to monitor how fast they eat

And more…

It’s March 4th and this is the Brighton Report

A new study sheds light on the link between ADHD and obesity

Kids with ADHD face a lot of challenges, and we’re now learning that, for girls, obesity may be one of them. A study by the Mayo Clinic found that girls with ADHD were twice as likely to develop obesity compared to girls without the disorder.

The same risk doesn’t exist for boys.

We know from previous research that ADHD looks different in boys and girls. Boys tend to be hyperactive, which means they burn a lot of calories and energy, while ADHD in girls often leads to more internalized behaviors like depression. The same abnormalities in the brain that cause ADHD can also cause eating disorders. Girls with ADHD may not be able to control their eating and may wind up overeating.

Sleep issues, which go hand in hand with ADHD, may also contribute to weight gain.

The best bet for parents of kids with ADHD is to be aware of the risk and to encourage healthy eating and lots of physical activity.

Americans need to cut back on sugar intake

Last month, the Obama administration released its update to the Dietary Guidelines for Americans, our go to source for nutrition advice. And, it’s bad news for Twinkie lovers everywhere.

The guidelines recommend that Americans cut back – way back – on the amount of sugar we consume. Right now, the average American consumes 22 teaspoons of added sugar per day. According to the new guidelines, Americans should limit the amount of added sugar to no more than 10% of their daily calories, or no more than 12 teaspoons for a 2,000-calorie a day diet. To meet the 10% target, most of us will have to cut our sugar intake in half.

The recommendations apply only to added sugar – the refined sugar and corn syrup added to baked goods, processed foods, and sodas. The good news: you can replace those Twinkies with the naturally occurring sugar in fruits and milk.

Researchers find a novel way for kids to monitor how fast they eat

We know that eating at a leisurely pace may help to prevent the overeating that leads to weight gain. Slowing food intake triggers that feeling of fullness, the so-called satiety signal that normally develops about 15 minutes after you start eating. But, it can be difficult to get children to pace themselves.

In a recent study, a research team working in Mexico developed a novel way for children to monitor how fast they are eating. Each child, aged 12 or 13, was given a 30 second hourglass for use at mealtimes. They were told to take a bite, flip the hourglass, and wait until it was empty before taking another bite.

Researchers chose to focus on developing good table manners, along with paced eating habits, rather than limiting portion size to curb overeating.

The results are encouraging. Researchers found that children who waited the thirty seconds between bites lost an average of nearly 4% of their body weight during the yearlong project. Those who didn’t pace their eating saw their weight increase by as much as 12%.

And, that’s the report for this week. I’m Lauren, and thanks for watching.