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. 2014 Mar;104(3):e72-8.
doi: 10.2105/AJPH.2013.301556. Epub 2014 Jan 16.

Diet-beverage Consumption and Caloric Intake Among US Adults, Overall and by Body Weight

Free PMC article

Diet-beverage Consumption and Caloric Intake Among US Adults, Overall and by Body Weight

Sara N Bleich et al. Am J Public Health. .
Free PMC article


Objectives: We examined national patterns in adult diet-beverage consumption and caloric intake by body-weight status.

Methods: We analyzed 24-hour dietary recall with National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey 1999-2010 data (adults aged ≥ 20 years; n = 23 965).

Results: Overall, 11% of healthy-weight, 19% of overweight, and 22% of obese adults drink diet beverages. Total caloric intake was higher among adults consuming sugar-sweetened beverages (SSBs) compared with diet beverages (2351 kcal/day vs 2203 kcal/day; P = .005). However, the difference was only significant for healthy-weight adults (2302 kcal/day vs 2095 kcal/day; P < .001). Among overweight and obese adults, calories from solid-food consumption were higher among adults consuming diet beverages compared with SSBs (overweight: 1965 kcal/day vs 1874 kcal/day; P = .03; obese: 2058 kcal/day vs 1897 kcal/day; P < .001). The net increase in daily solid-food consumption associated with diet-beverage consumption was 88 kilocalories for overweight and 194 kilocalories for obese adults.

Conclusions: Overweight and obese adults drink more diet beverages than healthy-weight adults and consume significantly more solid-food calories and a comparable total calories than overweight and obese adults who drink SSBs. Heavier US adults who drink diet beverages will need to reduce solid-food calorie consumption to lose weight.


Net change in solid-food intake associated with drinking sugar-sweetened beverages (SSB) and diet beverages among US adults (aged ≥ 20 years) by weight status: National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, 1999–2010. Note. Diet = diet beverage; SSB = sugar-sweetened beverage. *P = .05.

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