Although sugar-sweetened beverage consumption has been linked to weight status in older children, its effect on preschoolers
has been less clear.
At age 2, there was not a link between sugary drinks and obesity
, though these children had greater changes in their body mass index scores in the following two years than children who did not regularly drink sugary beverages at age 2. Researchers found regular drinkers of sugar-sweetened beverages also consumed less milk and were more likely to watch more than two hours of television
Study authors conclude that parents and caregivers should be discouraged from providing their children with sugar-sweetened beverages, and should instead offer them calorie-free beverages and milk.