Data from the What We Eat in America (WWEIA) tables from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) was examined as well as survey data from the School Nutrition Dietary Assessment Study (SNDA). 97% of children eat snack which contribute to 37% of children’s energy intake and consist of almost 40% of the added sugar.
The diets of American children aged 2 to 11 contains surplus energy and sugars but insufficient Vitamin D, calcium, and potassium. One way to address the insufficiencies and excesses of children’s diets would be to change the nutrient density of children’s snacks. Foods high in added sugars and energy currently dominate children’s snack choices.
Yogurt, fruit, and vegetables are naturally rich sources of the 2010 DGA’s nutrients of concern and are also foods that children do not consume in sufficient quantity. According to the USDA’s National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference, a typical serving of Vitamin D fortified, fruit-flavoured, low fat yogurt (6 oz (~170g)) contains 235mg calcium, 301mg potassium, 2.2µg Vitamin D, and 31g sugar.
So, Adding one 6oz (~170g) serving of yogurt each day would provide enough calcium for children aged 9 to 11 to meet the recommended level of intake, and would increase vitamin D and potassium consumption for children of all age groups help children move closer to DGA recommendations for almost all of the nutrients of concern; combining yogurt with fruit or vegetables for snacks would also increase consumption of all nutrients of concern.