Background: Fluid intake, especially water, is essential for human life and also necessary for physical and mental function. The present study aimed to assess beverage consumption across age groups.
Methods: A systematic review was conducted. Original research in English language publications and available studies (or abstracts in English) from 2000 to 2013 was searched for by using the medical subheading (MeSH) terms: ('beverage' OR 'fluid' [Major]) AND ('consumption' [Mesh] OR 'drinking' [Mesh] OR 'intake' [Mesh]) AND ('child' [Mesh] OR 'adolescent' [Mesh] OR 'adult' [Mesh]). Article selection was restricted to those papers covering healthy populations of all age groups in a nationwide sample, or from a representative sample of the population of a city or cities, which examined the trends or patterns of beverage intake and the determinants of beverage intake. Sixty-five studies were identified with respect to beverage consumption across age groups. The papers were screened by thoroughly reading titles or abstracts. Full-text articles were assessed by three investigators.
Results: Total beverage intake varied between 0.6 and 3.5 L day(-1) among all age groups (males more than females). Plain water contributed up to 58%, 75% and 80% of the total beverage intake in children, adolescents and adults, respectively. Milk consumption was higher among children; consumption of soft drinks was higher among adolescents; and the consumption of tea, coffee and alcoholic beverages was higher among adults.
Conclusions: Plain water is the main water source for all age groups and the consumption of other beverages varies according to age.
Keywords: beverage consumption; energy intake; systematic review; total fluid intake.
© 2014 The British Dietetic Association Ltd.