Research is inconclusive regarding sweetened beverages and weight gain. However, sweetened beverage consumption has been associated with increased caloric intake and decreased diet quality. Beverage consumption should not be at the expense of diet quality. Beverage choices may require careful attention to added sugars and solid fats if a healthful diet as described by MyPyramid is to be achieved. Consumption of sweetened beverages should not exceed the discretionary caloric limit for any eating pattern.
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Robinson, S. F., & Kirk, A. (2007). Soft Drinks and Children: Where's the Science?. The Journal of Extension, 45(2), Article 2. https://tigerprints.clemson.edu/joe/vol45/iss2/2