Take the bat, leave the candy: The food environment of youth baseball

‘Take me out to the ballgame’ doesn’t exactly conjure up images of apple slices and kale chips. The more likely culprits include French fries, soda and the occasional box of Crackerjacks.

Unfortunately for children who play youth baseball, eating unhealthy food during practices and games may be contributing to weight problems, according to researchers at Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center. The study, published in the current online edition of Childhood Obesity, found that high-calorie snacks and sugar-sweetened drinks dominate the youth baseball scene.

“Though youth sports are an excellent way to promote physical activity, social interaction and positive health behaviors, the food environments are often characterized by less healthy food options with high calorie contents and lower nutrient density,” said Joseph Skelton, M.D., associate professor of pediatrics at Wake Forest Baptist and senior author of the study.

In this observational study, the research team conducted an environmental scan of foods consumed by players and family members during 12 games at a youth baseball field in northwest North Carolina. The players were boys 8 to 11 years old on six teams.

The researchers found that most snacks were high-calorie food items, including French fries, candy and cookies and most beverages were sugar-sweetened. Nearly 90 percent of food and beverage items purchased were from the concession stand.

“Team sports like baseball are still very important for children’s activity and development,” said Megan Irby, M.S, co-author and research program manager of Brenner FIT, a multidisciplinary pediatric obesity program at Wake Forest Baptist.

“But as seen in this study, games and practices can be upwards of two to three nights a week, and many children participate on multiple sports teams each year. Parents should plan ahead for these busy times and even advocate in their local sports leagues for policies that address snacks and drinks.”

This research was the first step in exploring the question of whether children and families attending youth sporting events may be increasing their risk for being overweight or obese as a result of chronic unhealthy food behaviors associated with sports participation, Skelton said. Contrary to the intent of youth sports, these findings indicate that children may be leaving the ball field having consumed more calories than they expended.

“Despite the benefits of participating in sports, the increased exposure to unhealthy foods and disruption of meal times may increase children’s risk for poor nutritional habits that can contribute to weight management issues,” Skelton said.

A limitation of the study was the ability to accurately document all foods consumed at the ballpark without being intrusive.

Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by here.
Diet And Weight Loss News — Sciencedaily
— Courtesy “Science News Daily” (ScienceNewsDaily.com) <p>

Jillian Michaels: 30 Day Shred Fitness Tip- Daily Lists

Jillian Michaels: 30 Day Shred Fitness Tip- Daily Lists: America’s Toughest Trainer & Fitness Celebrity, Jillian Michaels shares some of her invaluable worko…
Video Rating: 4 / 5

<p>


You May Also Like These Topics...
2 women playing soccer on green grass field during daytime

You Can Help Your Child Get More Exercise By Following These 5 Tips

Does your child get enough exercise? You can get your children more active with these 5 fun parenting tips.

man in black t-shirt and black shorts running on road during daytime

Better Health in Four Steps

In just four steps, you can improve your health for the better and this article will show you how. The steps below are bite-sized nuggets of health information you can actually use to live a healthy life. Here we go… Nutritional supplements are the first step As far as I’m concerned, they are very important […]

Top 4 Nutrition Predictions in the New Year

Several food and nutrition trends were in the spotlight this year, including the continued rise of plant-based diets, non-dairy ice creams and superfoods that are blasts from the past — legumes, apples and cabbage. It can be easy to experience nutrition whiplash in the New Year, but don’t be a victim. Get a jump-start on […]

Want to lose weight? Research proves a big breakfast is the first step

If you want to lose weight, you’re not alone. More than half of Americans desire to shed pounds, according to Gallup. This goal inspires people to take action in many ways, from increasing exercise to modifying meals. One thing many people do is skip breakfast in order to lower calorie intake. While this may seem […]

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , ,
Previous Post
2014/04/02a34_bodybuilding_41u037E7GAL._SL160_
Healthy Lifestyle Supplements

Zinc supplementation shows promise in reducing cell stress after blasts

Next Post
2014/04/6da18_exercise_default
Healthy Lifestyle

Soy-dairy protein blend increases muscle mass, study shows

Leave a Reply

0 Shares