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Does soda make kids violent?
August 16th, 2013
12:15 AM ET

Does soda make kids violent?

Yet another study is warning parents to limit soda consumption with children.  While previous studies have linked soda consumption with higher rates of obesity, a study published in the journal Pediatrics, says it also causes aggressive, violent behavior in children as young as 5 years old.

The study:

Researchers at Columbia University followed the habits of about 3,000 mother-child pairs from 20 large cities in the United States. While the children were followed since birth in the long-term study, the data pertaining to soda consumption was compiled when the children were 5 years old. Researchers asked the mothers to self-report how many servings of soda their child drinks on a typical day, and then answer a series of behavioral questions.

The results:

Children who consumed at least four servings of soda per day were twice as likely than those who didn't drink any soda to display aggressive violent behaviors - such as destroying other people’s belongings, starting physical fights and verbally attacking other children. The kids were also more likely to have trouble paying attention to instructions, and were more withdrawn socially compared to 5-year-olds who didn’t consume soda.

“There was a dose response,” said Shakira Suglia, study author and associate professor of epidemiology at Columbia University. “With every increase in soda consumption, we saw an increase in behavior problems. It was significant for kids who consumed as few as one serving of soda per day.”

The association was present after researchers adjusted for parenting styles, and socio-demographic factors such as how much violent television the children were exposed to, their sleep schedule, and candy consumption.

Limitations:

Because researchers relied on self-reporting by mothers, they were unable to pinpoint the type of soda (diet versus regular), or the exact serving size associated with the increase in negative behavior.

The American Beverage Association disagrees with the findings of this study. In a statement to CNN, the group said:  "It is a leap to suggest that drinking soda causes these or any other behavioral issue. The science does not support that conclusion. The authors themselves note that their study 'is not able to identify the nature of the association between soft drinks and problem behaviors.' Importantly, our member companies do not promote or market the consumption of soft drinks to children in the age group examined in this study.”

Takeaway:

The researchers say their findings add to the mounting evidence that soda consumption has a negative effect for children.

Other experts warn to limit soda consumption. “Despite the multitude of studies exposing the negative effects of soda consumption, Americans continue to buy and drink more soda than those in any other country,” said Marlo Mittler, registered dietician from Cohen Children’s Medical Center of New York, and not affiliated with the study. “In an effort to reduce the effects on a child's possible negative behavior, it is suggested to eliminate or avoid any soda consumption.”

The American Academy of Pediatrics currently recommends parents and caregivers limit giving children caffeinated or sugar-sweetened beverages, and should instead offer them calorie-free beverages and milk.

Real or fake sugar: Does it matter?


soundoff (239 Responses)
  1. Keith

    This just in: large amounts sugar and caffeine will cause children to have unusually high energy levels, and they will find many different outlets. Thank you Columbia University for this information, as I'm sure most parents were completely oblivious to this information until now. This 5-year study of 3,000 children was truly a benefit to society.

    August 16, 2013 at 14:08 | Report abuse | Reply
    • GeorgeBos95

      Or a colossal waste of research $$$.

      August 16, 2013 at 15:07 | Report abuse |
    • Jeff S

      You do understand that science demands experiments to test theories right? That we don't rely of subjective observation to prove something?

      August 16, 2013 at 15:49 | Report abuse |
    • SC

      The fact of the matter is that many parents think of soda as benign. They do not know that it has harmful effects on the health of their children. It's called public education and it is not a waste of anyone's time.

      What's remarakable is all the amateur social scientists on ths message board – people who put forward their own theories as to why children behave the way they do, based on their own limited sphere of experience, with nothing but anecdotal evidence to back it up. "Those scientists at Columbia, what morons, but I, on the other hand, know everything about this topic. If only people listened to me!!! I really know what's going on!" If you really looked at these people and how they raise their kids, well, the picture might not be as rosy as the one they paint. Just sayin...

      August 16, 2013 at 16:26 | Report abuse |
    • Goddog

      SC... When it comes to studies like this there are more than a few flaws; self reporting, no brand or type identification, no blind or control group... so it is not really a scientific study. Also, there are many right and wrong ways to raise a child. I would expect people's opinions to be as varied.

      August 16, 2013 at 16:57 | Report abuse |
    • scientist

      No kidding. And they concluded this based on "self-reported data" from the parents? What a complete waste of a research study.

      August 16, 2013 at 17:13 | Report abuse |
    • scientist

      Jeff S – true, but the very data they collected WAS completely subjective. No control group and no way to pinpoint what in soda would've caused such behavior.

      August 16, 2013 at 17:14 | Report abuse |
    • Burnin' for learnin'

      I also think there are many confounders in this study. I'm sure parents who allow their children to drink soda on a DAILY basis are lower socioeconomic status and may have other variables affecting the child's behavior. The child could be unsupervised because parents are working or feel forced to to combat the more violent or harsh neighborhood they live in. I would be interested to see a secondary analysis controlling for these other factors.

      August 17, 2013 at 00:52 | Report abuse |
  2. Perspective

    I think it'd be more informative if we knew the socio-economic status of each subject. I'm more inclined to believe that soda would be more of an indicator than the cause of aggressive behavior, i.e. households that are poorer/less educated tend to drink more soda due to lack of health discipline or something similar.

    August 16, 2013 at 14:12 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Carl

      Yeah, notice how they didn't differentiate between sodas with or without caffeine. "We're just gonna call it all soda, it couldn't possibly matter if they are consuming a stimulant."

      August 16, 2013 at 14:26 | Report abuse |
    • teresa

      Our local HS wanted me to complete a survey about my household. The asked questions like
      are the parents living together
      amount of money coming into the household
      If there was a step parent involved
      what the level of the parents education
      I wrote back that I would only do there little survey if my childrens achievements were attached to my answers.
      See like you they wanted to blame low achievement on lowincome and single parent homes.
      my children were 10 ten in their class and went on to be on the deans list when they attended college (that they paid for)
      I have 1 with a masters degree, on with a nursing degree, and on with an accounting degree who is currently serving our nation.
      If you ask my kids they will tell you that I did not give them sodas at home.
      Once again lets lump the people you don't like together – whatever makes you feel superior.

      August 16, 2013 at 14:35 | Report abuse |
    • Midwestern Teacher

      Agree with "Perspective". Responsible parents would not give soda to young children. Children that age should drink milk, tap water, and perhaps a bit of Real fruit juice. They should not be drinking anything with added sugar.

      August 16, 2013 at 15:01 | Report abuse |
    • GeorgeBos95

      They claim to have factored in that information ... which makes it seem odd that they didn't measure any granularity on the type of soda ... it was just "soda".

      Sloppy, sloppy, sloppy.

      August 16, 2013 at 15:08 | Report abuse |
    • Will

      Exactly what I thought when I read this. Even beyond socio-economic, if you're giving your 5 year old 4 servings of soda a day, you're probably not a good parent, and I'd guess that violent and anti-social behavior is also higher among children with bad parents.

      August 16, 2013 at 15:37 | Report abuse |
    • BuffaloBen

      Bingo. Only morons give their young children soda. And my unscientific opinion is that morons are more likely to have moron-children.

      August 16, 2013 at 15:51 | Report abuse |
    • Mom Has It

      so happy i wasnt the only one thinking this. If you are giving you toddler to 5 year old "soda" the problem isnt the soda. It's that the kid is stuck with crappy parents

      August 16, 2013 at 17:37 | Report abuse |
  3. Great Study Now Heed It

    This is obviously a great study done with great care that parents with children should obviously heed. It however appears that those who make such sodas of course are going to defend making their drinks without looking at the overall picture of how the study has shown that it can seriously affect the children who drink it. And they certainly have not presented a counter study to dispute the present study. Therein lies the difference.

    August 16, 2013 at 14:14 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Carl

      You are obviously not qualified to have an opinion on health studies, or you would have seen the obvious errors.

      August 16, 2013 at 14:24 | Report abuse |
    • Great Study Now Heed It

      It is you who is obviously the one not qualified to counter such health studies, Carl, that are conducted by professionals such as to try to obfuscate the truth in those studies thereby misleading others to continue drinking something that can lead to ill health for their children. Shame On You!

      August 16, 2013 at 14:44 | Report abuse |
    • GeorgeBos95

      A "great study done with great care" would have tracked the type of soda.

      I'd call this a sloppy study.

      August 16, 2013 at 15:09 | Report abuse |
    • Jesse

      So you expect the parents to not only collect data on how much soda their kids drink, but also the brand of soda and how much? To what end? To determine that Mountain Dew causes more violent behavior than Pepsi? I don't think that was the objective. Rather, the researchers were attempting to determine if soda in general had any of these unintended consequences. Now that a link between violent behavior in children and soda consumption has been established, many more studies can be planned to differentiate between caffienated and uncaffienated, and between brands. There are limits to any study, and it is reasonable to focus more broadly in initial studies and then figure out the details later. This is typically how science works.

      August 16, 2013 at 15:22 | Report abuse |
    • denmond

      Calling this a great study really shows how little you comprehend.

      All this study has done is find a correlation between soda consumption and behavior. Correlation is not causation. The 'study' doesn't even attempt to hypothesize any scientific basis for such a link? Would you care to try to explain in scientific terms what ingredient in soda causes violent behavior?

      From all appearances, this is a poor example of a scientific study. Is there even a control group?

      Does the study take into account 'PARENTING' in its population? Most 'GOOD' parents don't let their under 5 kids DRINK soda. I'd say there's likely more correlation in the 'parenting' capabilities of the survey population than soda consumption on the behavior of their children. If a parent is letting their 3-4 year old drink that much soda, there's likely a parenting issue that is a more likely CAUSE of the behavior issue. Soda consumption is more an indicator of BAD parenting than a CAUSE of violent behavior.

      August 16, 2013 at 16:25 | Report abuse |
  4. Bubba D.

    C'mon. . .just say it: high fructose corn syrup

    August 16, 2013 at 14:14 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Carl

      Come on, just say it:

      55% fructose syrup, vs. the supposedly healthy "natural" 50% fructose syrup. Or the beloved pear juice, a favorite sweetener of organic hucksters who want to list juice concentrate instead of "sugar" on their label, which is 65% fructose.

      August 16, 2013 at 14:23 | Report abuse |
    • Will S

      Sierra Mist is a good choice for an occasional treat as it uses sugar instead of HFCS.

      August 16, 2013 at 14:46 | Report abuse |
    • Along Those Lines

      Along the lines of the danger in High Fructose Corn Syrup as well as Aspertame, there is this Important Message.
      http://org.salsalabs.com/o/750/p/dia/action3/common/public/?action_KEY=14103

      August 16, 2013 at 14:53 | Report abuse |
    • Anna

      Hey Carl? Studies show that consumption of high fructose corn syrup causes more weight gain than regular table sugar. Both are processed and it is not fructose that's the problem. It may be the fact that HFCS is produced by some sort of enzymatic processing. I don't know. But I do know that HFCS has one if the highest glycemic indexes of sll the sugars which is related to blood sugar levels and insulin production. It is higher than table sugar, much higher than honey and much, much higher than fructose (87 to 17). So maybe those stupid hipsters with their pear juice have some thing right.

      August 16, 2013 at 17:22 | Report abuse |
  5. Carl

    THis study (not an experiment) is bogus.

    Soda consumption was self-reported by the parents (not observed or metered out by the researchers). Thanks to the persistent myth that sugar makes kids behave poorly (usually falsely "supported" by poorly-designed studies like this one), self-reporting parents with bad kids are more likely to remember soda consumption. It's a stunningly obvious source of confirmation bias, and these incompetent researchers did nothing to avoid it.

    This part here is probably complete nonsense as well:
    "The association was present after researchers adjusted for parenting styles"

    ...stated as if adjusting data for parenting styles is such an easy thing to do. Researchers often declare that they adjusted/controlled for some factor without giving much/any explanation for how they did it. It's also logically impossible, since allowing a five year old to drink FOUR CUPS OF SODA per day IS a "parenting style". That's like saying "elephants weigh more than butterflies, even after we adjusted for weight." So which is more likely? These bumbling researchers achieving the miracle of adjusting data for such subjective concepts, or that the parents who let their five-year-olds drink 4 cups of soda every day are just bad parents who fail in other ways as well?

    This is exactly the kind of junk research which gets stacked up in lists and offered as evidence by people who believe other unproven things, like the recent claim that fake sugar has a magical ability to make you fat without consuming calories.

    August 16, 2013 at 14:18 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Walt

      I think this and other information like it that people believe is a major indicator of the lack of science being taught in our country. Anyone with a little scientific training knowledge understands exactly how bogus studies of this kind are. The soda drinking and parenting style issue is especially telling. Its like saying that tress swaying causes wind.

      August 16, 2013 at 14:26 | Report abuse |
    • Skeeve

      Considering that you didn't read the original report, you opinion about statistical procedures used in this study, analysis of confounding factors and adjustment to parenting style are absolutely irrelevant, but sure you can type you opinion away – bytes are cheap 🙂

      August 16, 2013 at 15:11 | Report abuse |
    • Theresa

      Actually, this is more a case of poor reporting than of poor research design.

      I looked up the actual study and read it – the researchers are very specific about what they controlled for. The line "adjusted for parenting styles" is nowhere to be found in the research article, it was an attempt by the reporter to summarize a long list of what was examined.
      Another example of sloppy reporting: the reporter states that the study "...says it (soda consumption) also causes aggressive, violent behavior..." While if you ready the study itself, it states "This study is not able to identify the nature of the association between soft drinks and the problem behaviors. " and also states " There are other potential confounders that we cannot adjust for which may be related to both soda consumption and child behavior"

      August 16, 2013 at 15:13 | Report abuse |
    • Skeeve

      On the other hand CNN (or any other news outfit) is at its best. They report "a study" but do not provide a link to original research. Now, if it WAS published it is simply sloppy not to provide such a link, if it was not published it is simply sloppy to report it. Whichever way you look the CNN article is sloppy

      August 16, 2013 at 15:16 | Report abuse |
    • ardnael

      Fake sugar can cause diabetes, because it tricks your body into thinking you are not consuming a sugar...I have read that one...but statistics lie. I went to college and took enough of those classes to learn that if you don't like the results you just use a new formula.

      August 16, 2013 at 15:52 | Report abuse |
    • Tigerflower

      I agree. It doesn't take a genius to figure out that parents who are allowing kids to fill up on soft drinks aren't the kind to spend a lot of time focusing on their children's socialization. The fact that they were clueless enough to admit to all the soft drinks also casts doubt on their level of intelligence.

      August 16, 2013 at 17:00 | Report abuse |
    • OdinVonTogan

      I went to a garden party, to see some of my old friends. They told me that peas had sugar and I should eat green beans instead, citing that beans had protein as compared to the carbs in the peas. In other words, how much of the total diet, and how much physical exercise, was each "test subject", uh, subjected to. And why does Midwestern Teacher want to kill all these kids with tap water? Hmmmmm. Idunno. Satan?

      August 16, 2013 at 17:26 | Report abuse |
  6. Aleeza

    I like your page. There are many articles with photos, which I like.
    http://tinyurl.com/l6on4ag

    August 16, 2013 at 14:19 | Report abuse | Reply
  7. Gabriel S.

    No kidding, parents who're lenient enough to give their kids FOUR SODAS A DAY have bratty, aggressive kids.

    August 16, 2013 at 14:23 | Report abuse | Reply
  8. Wake Up and Smell the Soda

    As long as people continue to be in denial about the bad effects of sugar drinks to their children as well as to themselves, they will have none other to blame but themselves for the ill health they may all encounter by continuing to drink stuff that has been shown to be harmful to the human body.

    August 16, 2013 at 14:25 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Carl

      Nobody I am aware of denies the real problems with drinking soda, which are that it ruins your teeth and makes you fat. But that doesn't mean every dingle thing anyone makes up must be true.

      August 16, 2013 at 15:11 | Report abuse |
    • rapierpoint

      Carl,

      " which are that it ruins your teeth and makes you fat." I would call that less a problem with drinking soda and more of a problem with the manner in which one drinks soda. There are millions of people that have been drinking soda all their lives and haven't ruined their teeth or are fat. It's not the product, but the behavior of consumption.

      August 16, 2013 at 15:49 | Report abuse |
  9. John

    Correlation doesn't equal causation. If a kid is getting 4 servings a day from their parents, those parents probably don't don't moderate anything else with the child either, such as their behavior.

    August 16, 2013 at 14:35 | Report abuse | Reply
  10. notsowitty

    I suppose that parenting has nothing to do with it? Parents who allow their 5 year old more soda than others, MIGHT be a little more lax. Did that occur to anyone? I'm sure it didn't. Down with soda.

    August 16, 2013 at 14:40 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Allen

      Exactly what I was thinking! Flawed study from the beginning... now if they blinded parents and kids to diet vs. regular soda, that would be a start.

      August 16, 2013 at 16:42 | Report abuse |
  11. Cnl. Angus

    So much for that old saying about, "Things go better with Coke."

    August 16, 2013 at 14:46 | Report abuse | Reply
  12. Robert G

    wow shocking, you mean that kids who drink a lot of suger water (useually with artificial coloring) and no nutrients have behavior problems???

    August 16, 2013 at 14:47 | Report abuse | Reply
  13. Ricky Bobby

    If you want wimpy kids, just give them water and name them Dr. Quinn and Medicine Woman!

    August 16, 2013 at 14:48 | Report abuse | Reply
  14. food

    Did they also track parenting skills and factor those in?

    August 16, 2013 at 14:52 | Report abuse | Reply
  15. Shelia

    LOL!! researchers relied on self-reporting by mothers.. ok just wasted time reading a flawed study. In other words we did a study so we can get money really self reporting ? just LOL

    August 16, 2013 at 15:15 | Report abuse | Reply
  16. Fiona

    The mothers were "self-reporting" the portions their kids consumed. Therein lies a huge margin of error.

    I wonder about the eithics of this. If researchers saw that young children in their study were being given several serivings of soda per day, shouldn't they have counseled the parents to stop poisoning their children?

    August 16, 2013 at 15:16 | Report abuse | Reply
  17. james

    Just the thought that we are having this discussion seems to matter. We have a serious problem dealing with what is good for us and too many people do not care.

    August 16, 2013 at 15:17 | Report abuse | Reply
  18. Jeff

    Not to mention that soda will rot kids teeth out.

    But I have to say...a large amount of heath issues and health warnings have been coming out in the last 2 years...obesity issues...mamogram age issues...pap smear age issues...prostate exam limit issues.

    Why in the last 2 years is all this coming out now? Simple. When Obamacare rolls out next year...all these warnings and health studies being issued will be part of the decision process for Obamacare.

    With a final warning of...."See..we told you this would happen."

    August 16, 2013 at 15:18 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Jesse

      That's right Jeff, the scientists are in on it, too. Just ask Orson Scott Card. Any day now Obama will be enacting his plan for world domination with his army of nerdy, spectacled scientist stormtroopers at his disposal. The mind quails, the body trembles.

      August 16, 2013 at 15:24 | Report abuse |
  19. whatever

    Of the 39 Billion a year on Food Stamps, FOUR BILLION are spent on hfcs beverages.

    August 16, 2013 at 15:25 | Report abuse | Reply
  20. Deep Purple

    Here's another thought: The parents who let their kids binge-drink sodas are permissive on most other fronts. My guess is that would exlain most of their bad behavior.

    August 16, 2013 at 15:28 | Report abuse | Reply
  21. No one

    Or maybe its just odd parenting styles or other factors, but sure self reporting on only the soda is so reliable for 'research'.
    I would guess if there was a problem it would have surfaced when they were a nickel a pop, or when cocaine was an ingredient.
    Just as a further question, define "twice as likely" is it 5% to 10%?

    August 16, 2013 at 15:33 | Report abuse | Reply
  22. Bubba

    Sugar and caffeine spins kids up? DUUHHHHHH! Who didn't know that? Everyone except these dork researchers apparently.

    August 16, 2013 at 15:34 | Report abuse | Reply
  23. LolumbiaLOL

    Why even do this study. Of course loading your young kid up with caffeine and sugar is going to make them go ballistic. Who gives their kid FOUR sodas a day in the first place?!!? Next up, a study where kids eat pixy sticks, skittles, and drink coffee all day. Check back in 3 months and $100k later to see what the results are!

    August 16, 2013 at 15:37 | Report abuse | Reply
  24. Bubba

    Just in! New U of Columbia research- Shakira Suglia makes link between hurt kids and crying! For her next amazing research paper she plans to study the link between overeating and obesity, and then the association between water and drowning!

    August 16, 2013 at 15:43 | Report abuse | Reply
  25. It's Sergeant.

    People who give their children soda are bad parents.

    August 16, 2013 at 15:45 | Report abuse | Reply
  26. Dr Gordon

    More BS science being used to dump on people who drink soda. Like the economy everyone/thing else is being blamed except for the real cause.

    August 16, 2013 at 15:46 | Report abuse | Reply
  27. ardnael

    I agree on that questioning. Parents who give their kids more soda seem (in perspective as a parent) less likely to take an interest in their kids behavior and discipline a lot less. Those who pay attention to and regulate what their kids are consuming are more likely to read to their kids every night and discipline aggressive behavior, which will greatly reduce violent issues. Has any of this been addressed in this study?

    August 16, 2013 at 15:49 | Report abuse | Reply
  28. soda don't make you fat

    I have been working with a guy for 18 years and he drinks coke pretty much all day at work and has for 18 years. HE IS NOT FAT, just a normal weight. Soda don't make you fat, all the junk food people eat does.

    August 16, 2013 at 15:53 | Report abuse | Reply
  29. EdL

    Holy Cow!! Another 'study' by 'researchers'!! How lucky we are!!

    August 16, 2013 at 16:03 | Report abuse | Reply
  30. Saboth

    I'm surprised by the conclusion or insinuation that soda makes these kids violent. Is drinking sugar-water making them act up, or being raised in households where children as young as 5 years old are allowed to drink as much soda all day as they want? I'd postulate that it's not the soda doing it, but the fact these children do not have enough rules and guidance bestowed on them, and are allowed do drink, eat, or do whatever they want, with no consequence.

    August 16, 2013 at 16:13 | Report abuse | Reply
  31. pjusa

    Results from studies like this are anecdotal at best. The results do not reveal cause and effect because there is no control group (children drinking "placebo" soda). Relying on input from mothers is hardly scientific.

    August 16, 2013 at 16:34 | Report abuse | Reply
  32. mflynn

    Maybe a mother who would let her 4 year old drink 4 servings of soda a day is just a crappy lax mother to begin with.

    August 16, 2013 at 16:52 | Report abuse | Reply
  33. Tigerflower

    It's a good guess that this has less to do with soda than being raised by the kind of parents who'd allow them to drink 4 cans of pop a day. Bad study is just bad.

    August 16, 2013 at 16:53 | Report abuse | Reply
  34. bobaloo55

    Soda ? Soda ? Violence ? are you kidding me,TRY ALCOHOL it is THE NUMBER ONE CAUSE of all Problems of SOCIETIES around the world,It flips the switch in the brain,Kills every organ in the human body,Its ALCOHOL doing it,NOT SODA and Not Cigarttes....Wake up PEOPLE

    August 16, 2013 at 16:53 | Report abuse | Reply
  35. Say What?

    HFCS is NOT SUGAR, its a sweetener and thats what in 99% of soda. There is a huge difference between the two. The problem with these studies is that it "trust" the people that answer the questions and the word soda has many choices. Once again, I demand the media to start reporting who pays for the studies and who is sponsoring them. Till then, I'd suggest NOBODY believes in them!

    August 16, 2013 at 16:55 | Report abuse | Reply
  36. bobaloo55

    Crime
    Crimes caused by alcohol were determined using the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s Uniform Crime Reports, the Florida Department of Corrections 2007 report. Crime costs include incarceration costs and victim costs. Incarceration costs include total sentencing costs for all individuals admitted into Florida state prisons in one year. Victim costs include lost wages, lost productivity, medical care, quality of life, etc. The total cost of crime caused by alcohol is $3,428,986,449.
    This means:

    $9,394,483 dollars are spent on alcohol attributable crimes per day. This means that $391,437 is spent every hour due to alcohol attributable crimes.

    Total victim costs consequent to alcohol attributable crimes exceeds $3,000,000,000 every year.

    August 16, 2013 at 16:55 | Report abuse | Reply
  37. bobaloo55

    Soda,Oh yea sure and the Moon is Green too

    August 16, 2013 at 16:56 | Report abuse | Reply
  38. Bjornn

    Can we use research funding to find a cure for cancer instead of studying the effects of soda on children? 2 out of every 3 people will contract some form of cancer in their lifetime, making this a more worthwhile subject to study. Meanwhile I have two good friends who play extremely gory video games and have drunk Mtn. Dew nearly every day since they were very young and they have no behavior problems whatsoever.

    August 16, 2013 at 16:57 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Tigerflower

      The thing is this study does NOT test the effects of soda on children. All it does is show a correlation between child behavior and parents who report giving soda to children which really tells us virtually nothing. The actual aggression could just as likely be linked to the level of intelligence or parenting style of the adults surveyed.

      August 16, 2013 at 17:10 | Report abuse |
  39. bobaloo55

    CALIFORNIA ALCOHOL COSTS to SOCIETY

    Alcohol abuse is known to cause illness, disability, and premature death. It is also a contributing
    factor in many instances to criminal activity, motor vehicle crashes, and other injuries. Substantial
    costs resulting from alcohol abuse are incurred in the United States and in California, including
    the cost of providing medical care for people with alcohol-related illness, treatment and prevention
    costs, costs to the law enforcement system, costs resulting from alcohol-related motor vehicle
    crashes and other injuries, and the indirect costs associated with disability, diminished capacity,
    and premature death from alcohol-related causes. The purpose of this briefing paper is to review
    the research that has been done in this area, and to present preliminary estimates of the costs of
    alcohol abuse in California and its impact on the state

    August 16, 2013 at 16:58 | Report abuse | Reply
  40. Dizzyd

    Actually, studies are out that show obesity IS more genetic than realized. It's not simply 'calories in/calories out'. That said, 4 sodas a day is WAY too much. I agree that lack of quality parenting to help kids learn acceptable behavior-as well as providing a balanced, nutritional diet-would have more negative impact than soda consumption. Sounds too much like the 'Twinkie defense' of old.

    August 16, 2013 at 16:59 | Report abuse | Reply
  41. Curmodgeon

    I think that it is the lack of soda that caused behavior problems in children. Every time I would steal my little brother's soda, he would go ballistic, threatening to kill me or at least hurt me much.

    August 16, 2013 at 17:02 | Report abuse | Reply
  42. cpc65

    I don't have any ******* behavior problems, you ********* bunch of ********! Is that my can of Pepsi you're holding? Put it the **** down now before I totally kick your ***, mother******!

    August 16, 2013 at 17:08 | Report abuse | Reply
  43. Scott

    Hey CNN! How about a link to this alleged "research"? Also, please report who funded this alleged "research" because I smell "goobirmint funding" for such shoddy work.

    Scott

    August 16, 2013 at 17:20 | Report abuse | Reply
  44. CGmom

    There could be a correlation between parents who let their kids drink that much soda and not have a lot of control over other aspects of their children's lives.

    August 16, 2013 at 17:23 | Report abuse | Reply
  45. Shape

    Put Limburger Cheese on everything you make for a week. The following week those picky eaters will think the Brussels sprouts are delicious.

    And if you say your kid likes Limburger cheese, then they probably aren't a picky eater to begin with.

    And I'm not saying Limburger cheese is bad, in fact, it is delicious.

    August 16, 2013 at 17:28 | Report abuse | Reply
  46. OdinVonTogan

    What I've noticed is these kids have rather lean shoulders, but their bottoms seem rather large. So I studied their behavior, and noticed that they all flail their arms around as if having a seisure on the top half of their bodies, and do little but sorta slide-step mostly back and forth in an aimless pattern, with an occsaional spin or two, which may explain why their hats are on sideways. My study revealed that sitting on their butts playng video games, and then flailing their arms to angry rap music, was at least part of the problem. Entirely unscientific of course, still, I taw what I taw, and it wudn't a puddy tat.

    August 16, 2013 at 17:36 | Report abuse | Reply
  47. skeptical

    I'm super strict with food for our family, but I have to side with the beverage industry here. Obviously, parents allowing that much soda consumption have other issues that likely contribute to this behavior.

    August 16, 2013 at 19:14 | Report abuse | Reply
  48. kiliclika

    “There was a dose response,” said Shakira Suglia. “With every increase in soda consumption, we saw an increase in behavior problems. It was significant for kids who consumed as few as one serving of soda per day.”

    yeah, but:

    "Researchers asked the mothers to self-report how many servings of soda their child drinks on a typical day,"

    So the researchers really had no objective idea the actual consumption by the kids. Fantastic research methodology.

    August 16, 2013 at 19:39 | Report abuse | Reply
  49. Celeste

    For years as a child and teen, my dad and I would split a 2-liter of Coca Cola every night!

    It made me kinda overweight, but not in any way violent.

    After college, I finally kicked the soda habit (and along with major diet changes) and got down to 120 pounds, and I feel better than ever, but I blame more of my weight and unhealthiness to processed food in general, not just soda.

    August 16, 2013 at 19:43 | Report abuse | Reply
  50. Nightler

    More crap from the people who want to ban soda.

    August 16, 2013 at 22:29 | Report abuse | Reply
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Get a behind-the-scenes look at the latest stories from CNN Chief Medical Correspondent, Dr. Sanjay Gupta, Senior Medical Correspondent Elizabeth Cohen and the CNN Medical Unit producers. They'll share news and views on health and medical trends - info that will help you take better care of yourself and the people you love.