Sugar is one content that mothers try so hard to reduce for the kids but this is not so easy as some kids know what buttons to press and some can throw a tantrum so bad that even the most strict mother eventually caves in.
You have heard certain people say that it is okay for kids to have enough sugar because they actually need it.
This fact is true but then, don’t we all need sugar?
What I am about to teach you is the dangers of allowing too much sugar intake for your child.
Today, I want to share with you some of the dangers of allowing the intake of too much sugar for your child. After this teaching, you might want to allow that child throw as much tantrum as they want because at the end you will be doing more good than harm for that child.
So, what are the dangers of too much sugar for a child?
I want to start from the least suspected danger. When a child takes too much sugar, he/she can gain weight in an unhealthy way. If there is continuous increase in the calories than is needed for growth, then there could be problem. Sudden excessive weight gain for a child can be very risky. This can lead to obesity and various other heart related issues can follow. Obesity occurs when energy intake from food or drink consumption is greater than the energy expenditure through metabolism or exercises. The blood sugar level increases and the child gets into more major health risks. This is a long term risk but still there. So, you might want to keep the sugar and calories away a bit if you truly love that child.
Excessive unhealthy food and sugars-sweetened soft drink consumption has been linked to unhealthy weight gain, as it provides a major and unnecessary source of calories with little or no nutritional value.
In 2010, WHO commissioned a systematic literature review to answer a series of questions relating to the effects of sugars on excess fat tissue deposit. These questions asked whether reducing or increasing intake of dietary sugars influences measures of body fatness in adults and children, and whether the existing evidence provides support for the recommendation to reduce intake of free sugars to less than 10% of total energy. Body fatness was selected as an outcome in view of the extent to which comorbidities of obesity contribute to the global burden of non-communicable disease. Owing to the multifactorial causes of obesity, it is unsurprising that the effect of reducing intake is relatively small. However, when considering the rapid weight gain that occurs after an increased intake of sugars, it seems reasonable to conclude that advice relating to sugars intake is a relevant component of a strategy to reduce the high risk of overweight and obesity in most countries. Obesity has increased worldwide during the past 30 years in all divisions of society. In 2010, overweight and obesity were estimated to cause 3.4 million deaths, 3.9% of years of life lost, and 3.8% of disability-adjusted life-years worldwide, with major healthcare costs implicated.
In Conclusion, similar to what is seen among older children, children aged 2 to 5 years drinking sugar sweetened beverages demonstrate both prospective and cross-sectional correlations with higher body mass index score. Pediatricians and parents should discourage sugar sweetened beverages consumption to help avoid potential unhealthy weight gain in young children. From a public health standpoint, strong consideration should be made toward policy changes leading to decreases in SSB consumption among children.
- A child who gets used to having too much sugar will eventually become a picky eater. He/she will develop a poor diet. This child will fall sick often due to poor immune system.
- Tooth decay is another very dangerous effect of too much sugar on a child. Their teeth gums are very weak and too much sugar can weakened it the more hence enhancing that child’s chances of developing dental cavities and decay. Sugar encourages bacteria to grow on the surface of a child’s teeth. Over time, the bacteria can cause cavities to develop. The amount of sugary foods and beverages your child drinks plays a significant role in how likely she is to develop tooth decay. Bacteria within the plaque use the sugar as energy and release acid as a waste product, which gradually dissolves the enamel in the teeth
When do you know that it is time to start cutting down sugar for your child?
- He/she throws a huge tantrum when they can’t get it.
- He/She has developed a slight mouth odor (no matter how small do not ignore it). A child should always have the sweetest smile: bright teeth and all but if this is not the case, then proper measures need to be taken as soon as possible.
- When your child becomes too picky. When all he/she prefers to gulp down has some certain amount of sugar in it, then it is time to cut down. Your child’s diet dictates upto 90% of their development rate. You need to, as the parent control what goes into your child that develops to become his/her said constant diet as this will determine how fast and how well your child develops. So, if the diet is not rich in vitamins and nutrients needed for development, then there would likely be cause to worry for you.
Now how can you help you child cut down on sugar?
- Get a substitute for every love snack. Example, your child loves to take Ribena, get fresh orange or apple and juice it for that child whenever he wants to take it
- Substitute the sugar in their meals with honey.
- Always check every product that they take for sneaky sugar contents. The fewer times they take the sugar, the more their sugar taste buds is reduced.
- Encourage exercise for your children. Some parents are okay with the idea of a driver picking their children up from the home straight to school and abck from school where they go straight to their i-pads or go straight to face the TV till they have breakfast and retire to bed. They are children and are expected to play around and exercise as much as they can (especially with the amount of sugar that goes into their body system everyday)
Finally, sugar is also essential for a growing child but can be very dangerous if not handled properly. As the parent, monitor how much sugar your child takes down and help them control it.
Till I come your way again, stay safe and keep our future safe!!