FIGURE 2-3 Percentage of daily calories from low-nutrient food subgroups for U.S. children and adolescents, ages 8–18 years, from National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) III, 1988–1994.

SOURCE: Kant and Graubard (2003).

reported number of low-nutrient foods was positively related to total calorie intake and the percentage of calories from carbohydrate and fat, and was negatively related to the intakes of fiber, vitamins A and B6, folate, calcium, magnesium, iron, and zinc. The strongest negative predictor of the reported number of low-nutrient foods was the amount of nutrient-dense foods consumed from the five major food groups (Kant and Graubard, 2003). Weekly consumption of a complete school lunch also was a negative predictor, whereas the number of reported eating occasions was a positive predictor.

Stated another way, those children who consumed fewer low-nutrient foods had better quality diets as reflected by fewer eating occasions reported, eating school lunch more regularly, and consuming more foods from the major food groups. Gender- and age-adjusted BMI, sociodemographic and family characteristics, and the reported hours spent in physical activity or watching television were not associated with the number of low-nutrient foods reported. The data suggest that increased access and availability of nutrient-dense foods and decreased access to low-nutrient foods in schools, homes, and other places will moderate low-nutrient food and calorie intake.

Increasing added sugars intake in younger children ages 2–5 years from CSFII 1994–1996 and 1998 was associated with decreasing intakes of sev-

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