Who says Americans don’t eat fruit? They may not be crazy about chewing oranges, peaches, or pineapples, but a new paper has revealed that US kids love apples.
Doctors and dieticians are excited about the discovery as it suggests that kids and teens may be convinced to adopt healthier diets as long as the adults in their lives know which fruits and vegetables they prefer.
Dr. Deena Blanchard, field expert from the NYU Langone Medical Center, gave a statement to CBS News saying that “You want to think about what kids like so then you can offer that to kids from an early age”. She went on to add that “The other thing is that we know kids are more likely to try new foods if they try it with something they like”.
And a new study has shown that most US kids and teens happily eat apples. Dr. Blanchard and her colleagues say that apples are the most popular healthy choice among the nation’s youth, accounting for somewhere around 19 percent (19%) of all fruit consumed by kids and teens in the 2 to 19 age range.
The second most popular choice was not exactly a fruit, but rather fruit juice, the third most popular choice was bananas, and the fourth most popular choice was melons.
To reach these conclusions, the researchers looked at more than 3.100 kids who were participating in the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey conducted between the years of 2011 and 2012.
Another important finding was that a third of the fruit consumed by kids doesn’t come in a solid state, but a liquid state – 100 percent (100%) natural fruit juices. It may simply be that kids don’t find the notion of chewing on fruit as appealing as drinking them.
However, this may not necessarily be a desired outcome as health experts say that fruit juices don’t offer the same benefits as whole fruits. Many of the vitamins are found in the skins that get thrown away after squeezing the juice. It’s worth mentioning that drinking fruits, rather than eating them, has also been linked to weight gain.
Dr. Blanchard also informed that individuals who consume fruit juices don’t get the same amount of fiber as the ones who consume whole fruit.
Researchers from the American Academy of Pediatrics inform that fruit juices aren’t one of the better things parents can give their young kids. They say that toddlers should primarily be given water and milk, and only between four (4) to six (6) ounces of fruit juice per day.
One parent who also spoke with reporters, Danielle Kilarjian, said that the new study basically reinforces what she already noticed in her own kids – young ones are very fond of apples.
She said that snacking on apples has kept her kids from eating processed foods, and led them to live a healthier life. She even lets her daughter, Charlie, add peanut butter on apples as this is a source of extra protein.
According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, parents can also try adding pieces of apple in their kids’ cereal or making apples a part of their lunch.
The findings were published earlier this week, on Monday (September 21, 2015), in the journal Pediatrics.
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