If your five-year-old is acting more aggressive and violent lately, take a look at what they’re drinking.
According to a new study from Columbia University, kids who drink four sodas a day are more prone to violent behavior. The researchers analyzed the soda drinking habits and behavior of 3,000 five-year-olds.
The result? Children who consumed four servings of soda a day were twice as likely to be violent as kids who didn't drink any soda. And by “violent,” the researchers meant attacking others physically, fighting with each other and destroying their own property and the belongings of others. Soda-drinking kids were also more likely to have trouble focusing and were more withdrawn. And the more soda a child consumed, the worse their behavior was. And those results stood, even after other factors were taken into account, like how much TV the kids watched, how much candy they consumed, and what their family life was like.
So what is it about soda that’s making kids aggressive and violent? The researchers believe the problem is the ingredient list which includes sugar, caffeine and high fructose corn syrup. The researchers already knew there was a link between soda, aggression and adolescents. But because five-year-olds are so small, the impact of soda on their behavior is even greater. And over 40% of five-year-olds drink soda every day. Experts say this latest study adds to the huge body of evidence that sugary drinks damage children’s health and well-being contributing to obesity, diabetes and other behavior issues.