HealthDay News — Greater electronic device use, particularly television, is linked to more consumption of added sugar and caffeine among adolescents, according to a study published in PLOS ONE.

Kelly M. Bradbury, from McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada, and colleagues used secondary data from the 2013 to 2016 cycles of Monitoring the Future Survey to assess information on energy drink and soda consumption by 32,418 students in grades 8 and 10 from 252 to 263 randomly selected schools in the United States.

The researchers found that soda and energy drink consumption decreased annually from 2013 to 2016, while daily use of electronic devices remained stable. For each hour/day increase of television, there was a 6.92-g increase in sugar intake and a 32% higher risk for surpassing the World Health Organization recommended sugar intakes (odds ratio, 1.32). Similarly, for each hour/day of television, there was an increased risk for exceeding caffeine recommendations (odds ratio, 1.28). There was also an increased risk for exceeding WHO sugar and caffeine intakes for each hour per day spent talking on a cellphone. There was only a weak association between video game use and caffeine intake.

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“Addressing these behaviors through counseling or health promotion could potentially help to reduce excess sugar and caffeine intake from sodas and energy drinks among this population,” the authors write.

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