Submitted to: Journal of Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: December 1, 2008
Publication Date: April 1, 2009
Citation: Keast, D.R., O'Neil, C.E., Nicklas, T.A. 2009. Snacking is associated with reduced risk for overweight and reduced abdominal obesity in adolescents aged 12-18 years: NHANES, 1999-2004 [abstract]. Journal of Federation of American Societies for Experimental 23:550.5.
The aim of this study was to examine associations of snacking with weight status and abdominal obesity in adolescents aged 12-18 years (n = 5,811). Snacks/drinks were combined when eating occasions were named in the 24-h recall, but analysis separated snacks from snacks/drinks that were only drinks. Adolescents were classified by frequency of snack consumption (0, 1, 2, 3, 4+ snacks per day), and by % of daily energy intake obtained from snacks (0, <10, 10-19, 20-29, 30-39, 40% or more). CDC Growth Charts were used to define overweight (BMI =85th percentile), and abdominal obesity was waist circumference =90th percentile for age and gender. Covariate-adjusted prevalence of overweight and abdominal obesity, and odds ratios were determined using PROC REGRESS and PROC LOGISTIC of SUDAAN. Compared to non-snackers, prevalence of overweight and abdominal obesity was 22-35% and 45-49% lower, respectively, for those who ate 3-4+ snacks per day, and 31-32% and 49-50% lower, respectively, for those who obtained 30-40% or more calories from snacks. Odds ratios for overweight and abdominal obesity ranged from 0.70 (0.52, 0.94) to 0.50 (0.37, 0.69), and from 0.66 (0.47, 0.94) to 0.42 (0.24, 0.74), respectively, for 2-4+ snacks per day; and from 0.54 (0.40, 0.75) to 0.56 (0.41, 0.76), and from 0.43 (0.27, 0.68) to 0.44 (0.28, 0.68), respectively, for 30-40%+ calories from snacks. Adolescents who eat snacks are less likely than non-snackers to be overweight or obese.