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Too much of a sweet thing

One spoonful of sugar may help the medicine go down, but a dozen spoonfuls are way too sweet. Today’s preschoolers consume 14 to 17 teaspoons of sugar a day that comes from foods and beverages like soda, fruit drinks and desserts, says a study in the Journal of Pediatrics. Those foods and drinks squeeze out more healthful fare like grains, vegetables, fruit and dairy. After analyzing more than 5,000 preschoolers’ diets, researchers found dramatic decreases in vitamins and minerals among kids whose added sugar intake was more than the 25 percent of calories recommended by the National Academy of Sciences. Even kids whose intake was just 10 percent of calories still didn’t consume enough grains, produce and calcium. The authors say their work suggests the sugar recommendations may be too high.