Children are drinking less cola and eating fewer chicken nuggets, French fires and hot dogs at restaurants, reports The New York Times. Consumption of soup, grilled chicken sandwiches, yogurt and carrots is, amazingly, up.
The economic downturn and new offerings by restaurants were cited in a new study as reasons for the sudden change in childhood eating habits, which coincides with childhood obesity levels reaching a plateau, according to another study. At the same time, it’s important to note that children are still eating plenty of fast junk food.
While eating habits may be changing somewhat, living close to fast food chains does not seem to contribute to childhood obesity, reports Inside Indiana Business on an Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis study.
While living near a McDonald’s had little effect on weight, living near recreational amenities does seem to lower body mass indexes in children:
The IUPUI researchers also report that residing near certain recreational amenities – fitness areas, kickball diamonds, and volleyball courts – lowers children’s body mass indexes (adjusted for normal childhood growth). The researchers estimated that locating one of these facilities near the home of an overweight 8-year-old boy could lower his weight by three to six pounds.