Tuesday, December 25

Christmas Guest Post : Sugar Makes Kids Hyperactive… NOT!

Hi all! Happy Christmas! This guest post entry came in my inbox just in time for the holiday season! I'm so excited to share with you! Enjoy your holidays and gatherings with family and friends! 

"I love to eat - Kit Kats or cookies-and-cream ice cream. I need sugar like five times a day."
Kim Kardashian

Kim Kardashian admits that she likes sugar, but so do many kids. And it isn’t hard to picture kids (or Kim) exhibiting rambunctious, rowdy and excited behaviour at a party and having fun with their peers while consuming party food containing high amounts of sugar. And as parents, we easily associate this kind of hyperactive behaviour to the sugar consumed.

It’s about time this sugary myth is busted. Studies have already shown that the consumption of sugar is no way related to hyperactivity. Parents continue to believe that sugar leads to hyperactivity simply because they already have an expectation of increased activity after the consumption of sugar. And they only observe such behaviour at a kids party (where there large amount of sugary foods are available) but not notice that their child can be quiet and calm while reading a book and eating a cookie that is also high in sugar. Children are naturally aroused at parties or at playtime and parents are just reacting to the children’s behaviour by associating it with the sugar they recently consumed. Parents also blame hyperactivity on sugar because sugar is a high energy food and they expect children to be energetic after consuming sugar. Expectations can affect perceptions.

As a parent, your observations are important, hyperactivity maybe due to your child’s temperament, interest level, emotional disturbances, learning disorders or even sleep problem. Hyperactivity aside, the consumption of excess sugar is the main culprit of the growing scrounge of childhood obesity, and adult obesity too. Look at Kim Kardashian. She’s getting fat.

Links for more information:

Wolraich, M., Wilson, D., & White, J. (1995). The Effect of Sugar on Behavior or Cognition in Children: A Meta-analysis. The Journal of the American Medical Association274(20), 1617-1621. doi: 10.1001/jama.1995.03530200053037Hoover, D., & Milich, R. (1994). Effects of Sugar Ingestion Expectancies on Mother-child Interactions.Journal of Abnormal Child Psychology22(4), 501-515. Retrieved from http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/7963081

Writer's Bio : Mr Aaron Yeo is a freelance writer who has BA in Communication from State University of New York, Buffalo. He is currently a Production Editor for John Wiley & Sons Singapore. He is also my dear friend and ex-colleague. He is a regular contributor for Mothers' Avenue. If you would like him to be a guest post for your site, he can be contacted via email at kfaayo(at)gmail(dot)com.

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