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Article

Free Sugar Consumption and Obesity in European Adolescents: The HELENA Study

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Growth, Exercise, Nutrition and Development (GENUD) Research Group, Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Zaragoza, 50009 Zaragoza, Spain
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Instituto Agroalimentario de Aragón (IA2), 50013 Zaragoza, Spain
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Instituto de Investigación Sanitaria Aragón (IIS Aragón), 50009 Zaragoza, Spain
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CIBER Fisiopatología de la Obesidad y Nutrición, Instituto de Salud Carlos III, 28029 Madrid, Spain
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Department of Nutrition and Food Sciences, University of Bonn, D-53115 Bonn, Germany
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Inmunonutrition Research Group, Department of Metabolism and Nutrition, Instituto del Frío, Institute of Food Science and Technology and Nutrition (ICTAN), Spanish National Research Council (CSIC), 28040 Madrid, Spain
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Department of Pediatrics, Medical School, University of Pécs, H-7624 Pécs, Hungary
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Division of Clinical Nutrition and Prevention, Department of Pediatrics, Medical University of Vienna, 1090 Vienna, Austria
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Inserm, U1286—INFINITE—Clinical Investigation Center—Institute for Translational Research in Inflammation and CIC 1403, University Lille, CHU Lille, F-59000 Lille, France
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Department of Public Health and Primary Care, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, Ghent University, 9000 Ghent, Belgium
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Faculty of Medicine, University of Crete, GR-71003 Crete, Greece
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Food and Nutrition Research Centre—Council for Agricultural Research and Economics, 00198 Rome, Italy
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ImFINE Research Group, Department of Health and Human Performance, Faculty of Physical Activity and Sport-INEF, Universidad Politécnica de Madrid, 28040 Madrid, Spain
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Department of Epidemiology and Public Health, Institut Pasteur de Lille, 59000 Lille, France
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EFFECTS 262, Department of Physiology, Faculty of Medicine, University of Granada, 18016 Granada, Spain
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Center of Biomedical Research (CIBM), Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology II, Instituto de Nutrición y Tecnología de los Alimentos, University of Granada, 18071 Granada, Spain
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Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Nutrients 2020, 12(12), 3747; https://doi.org/10.3390/nu12123747
Received: 27 October 2020 / Revised: 27 November 2020 / Accepted: 2 December 2020 / Published: 5 December 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sugary Food Consumption and Its Impact on Health)
Few studies have evaluated the association between dietary free sugars intake (FSI) and obesity in adolescents. We examined the relation between FSI and their contributors from the main food groups and obesity in European adolescents. We included 843 adolescents (51.6% male) from the cross-sectional HELENA study with two completed 24 h recalls and anthropometric data. Linear mixed models were applied to investigate the relation between FSI and different anthropometric indices. Odds ratios for having a high body mass index (BMI) were also estimated by multilevel ordinal regression. Total FSI was higher in males than females (102.60 g and 87.58 g, respectively, p < 0.001). No effect was observed between free sugar from the main food groups and BMI. Consumers of FSI from “cakes, pies and biscuits” in males (odd ratio (OR) = 0.455; 95% Confidence interval (CI) 0.251, 0.824) and from “breakfast cereals” in females had a lower probability of having obesity (OR = 0.423; 95%CI 0.204, 0.878), whereas females consuming FSI from ‘fruit and vegetables juices’ had a higher probability of obesity (OR= 2.733; 95% CI 1.286, 5.810). This study provides no evidence that increased FSI is associated with obesity in adolescents. Further studies are needed to assess the longitudinal exposure to FSI and their effect on obesity development. View Full-Text
Keywords: free sugars; food groups; overweight; body mass index; fat mass index; obesity; adolescents; Europe free sugars; food groups; overweight; body mass index; fat mass index; obesity; adolescents; Europe
MDPI and ACS Style

Flieh, S.M.; Moreno, L.A.; Miguel-Berges, M.L.; Stehle, P.; Marcos, A.; Molnár, D.; Widhalm, K.; Béghin, L.; De Henauw, S.; Kafatos, A.; Leclercq, C.; Gonzalez-Gross, M.; Dallongeville, J.; Molina-Hidalgo, C.; González-Gil, E.M. Free Sugar Consumption and Obesity in European Adolescents: The HELENA Study. Nutrients 2020, 12, 3747. https://doi.org/10.3390/nu12123747

AMA Style

Flieh SM, Moreno LA, Miguel-Berges ML, Stehle P, Marcos A, Molnár D, Widhalm K, Béghin L, De Henauw S, Kafatos A, Leclercq C, Gonzalez-Gross M, Dallongeville J, Molina-Hidalgo C, González-Gil EM. Free Sugar Consumption and Obesity in European Adolescents: The HELENA Study. Nutrients. 2020; 12(12):3747. https://doi.org/10.3390/nu12123747

Chicago/Turabian Style

Flieh, Sondos M., Luis A. Moreno, María L. Miguel-Berges, Peter Stehle, Ascensión Marcos, Dénes Molnár, Kurt Widhalm, Laurent Béghin, Stefaan De Henauw, Anthony Kafatos, Catherine Leclercq, Marcela Gonzalez-Gross, Jean Dallongeville, Cristina Molina-Hidalgo, and Esther M. González-Gil. 2020. "Free Sugar Consumption and Obesity in European Adolescents: The HELENA Study" Nutrients 12, no. 12: 3747. https://doi.org/10.3390/nu12123747

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