Total beverage consumption and beverage choices among children and adolescents

Int J Food Sci Nutr. 2003 Jul;54(4):297-307. doi: 10.1080/09637480120092143.


Patterns of beverage consumption among children and adolescents are related to age, race, and gender. The relationship between body mass index (BMI) and beverage consumption is unclear. In this paper, the total amount and the types of beverages consumed were analyzed according to age, race, and gender. Multivariate regression models were estimated for consumption of milk, juices, fruit drinks/ades, and carbonated soft drinks. Descriptive and multivariate regression analysis of children aged 6-19 from the US Department of Agriculture's Continuing Survey of Food Intake by Individuals 1994-96, 98 was performed. It was found that age, race, and gender play a significant role in the total amount, types, and relative proportions of beverages consumed by children and adolescents. Individuals in the first decile drink approximately 212.9 g beverages per day, whereas individuals in the tenth decile drink 2036.2 g. Boys drink more of most beverages than girls do. Older teens tend to drink more carbonated beverages, fruit drinks/ades, and citrus juice, but less fluid milk and non-citrus juice. White adolescent boys are heavy consumers of most beverages, including carbonated soft drinks, milk, and fruit drinks/ades. BMI is positively associated with consumption of diet carbonated beverages and negatively associated with consumption of citrus juice. BMI was not associated with consumption of milk, regular carbonated beverages, regular or diet fruit drinks/ades, or non-citrus juices. In conclusion, total beverage consumption and beverage choices are strongly related to age, race, and gender. BMI was only related to consumption of diet carbonated beverages and milk, and those relationships were weak.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Age Factors
  • Animals
  • Beverages*
  • Body Mass Index
  • Carbonated Beverages
  • Child
  • Citrus
  • Drinking*
  • Ethnicity
  • Female
  • Food Preferences*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Milk
  • Regression Analysis
  • Sex Factors