- Annual Reports
- Technical Booklets
- White Papers
- Industry Resources
- Carbohydrate Check Sample Program
- Other Resources
- CRA Statement on WHO Draft Guidelines on Sugar Intake
- CRA Statement on Proposed Changes to Nutrition Facts Label
- Kuball Appointed to Trade Committee
- CRA Responds to Citizens for Health’s False Claims about HFCS
- CRA Response to USC Study on Fructose Ratio in Beverages
- CRA Statement on Anti-dumping & Countervailing Duty Petitions
- CRA Statement on Western District of New York Lawsuit
- CRA Applauds Introduction of Safe and Accurate Food Labeling Act
- CRA Response to Soda Consumption & Behavioral Problems Study
- CRA Response to Nature Communications Mouse Study
- CRA Statement on Study on the Effects of Fructose on Liver Disease
- CRA Statement on JAMA Internal Medicine Study
- CRA Welcomes Robert Swinford
- Corn Refiners Association Celebrates 100 Years
- CRA Applauds Updated TPA Legislation
- Kohler Accepts Position at GMA
- Statement on the Food & Drug Administration Denial of Petition
- Study Relies on Debunked Research and Pure Speculation In Effort To Blame HFCS for Autism
- CRA Responds to Colony Collapse Disorder Claims
- Sugar Industry Ramps Up Misinformation Campaign
- Corn Refiners Ask Court to Dismiss Case
- Response to UCLA Rat Study
- Statement on the New York State Supreme Court’s Decision
- New Study on Fructose Ignores “Real World” Dietary Habits
- New Study Alleging HFCS-Diabetes Link is Flawed and Misleading
- Sugar Industry’s Latest Move
- Sugar Industry in a Stretch: Pitching New Study To Create False Scientific Controversy
- Corn Refiners Counter Sue the Sugar Association
- CRA Statement on GHSU Study
- Inconclusive Fructose Study
- Sugar Lawyers Refile Claims Already Rejected By Court
- Sugar Industry “Shopping Mall” Survey Misleads Consumers
- Corn Refiners Applaud Passage of Free Trade Agreements
- Court Rejects Key Portions of Lawsuit
- Corn Refiners Urge Passage of Free Trade Agreements
- HFCS & Sugar: Studies Show No Meaningful Difference
- Corn Refiners Respond to Lawsuit
- Heart Disease Study Fails to Prove Increased Risk Factors
- CRA Commends Signing of Mexico Trucking Agreement
- Fairfax Schools Chocolate Milk Sweetener
- Corn Refiners Applaud Trade Accord with Colombia
- Deregulation of Corn Amylase Biotech Trait
- Mexico Trucking Dispute
- CRA Welcomes Korean Deal
- JASN Fructose Review
- New Study – Added Sugars & Heart Disease
- Focus on Fructose Misplaced
- Sugar Content Study Flawed
- CRA Petitions FDA for Use of "Corn Sugar"
- Sara Lee Swaps Corn Sugar for Cane/Beet Sugar
- Fructose Pancreatic Cancer Study
- Metabolic Syndrome Research
- Summer Sweets
- Furan Study Misleading
- Gross Errors in Princeton Study
- Duke Statement Flaws
- CBS News Health Report
- Citizens For Health Fails To Disclose Funding In Latest Smear Of HFCS
- Legal Merits of CRA's Right to Educate Consumers about HFCS Unaffected by Judge's Ruling on Member Companies
- New Study: Fructose and Added Sugars Should Not be Singled Out in Obesity
- Online Campaign Highlights Caloric Balance & Total Sugars, Not Type
- Study Proves the Nutritional Equivalence of HFCS and Sugar
- Sugar Industry Denies Misleading Public Despite Pay-for-Play Media Reports
- “Fed Up” Documentary Highlights Nutritional Equivalence of Sweeteners
- Corn Refiners Association Welcomes New President
- News Archives
- HFCS-Free False Health Halo
- HMF, Honeybees and HFCS
- AHA Study Leads to Confusion
- AMA Decision on HFCS
- Beverages & Feelings of Hunger
- Bipartisan Approach Aplauded
- Confusion About Sugars
- Court Ruling on Natural Labeling
- CRA Applauds Michener Appointment
- CRA Applauds Terpstra Nomination
- CRA Applauds Vilsack Nomination
- CRA Statement – King Corn
- Do Fad Diets Really Work?
- Expert Assessment: HFCS Mercury
- FDA Natural Clarification
- Fructose Confused With HFCS
- HFCS Mercury Study Flawed
- HFCS Mercury Study Outdated
- HFCS Natural Labeling
- High Fructose Corn Syrup & Mercury
- ILSI-USDA Workshop on HFCS
- Moms' Nutrition Concerns
- NBC News Nutrition Report
- No Reason to Switch
- Outstanding Researchers Honored
- Peru Trade Deal
- Proposed Florida Legislation
- Pure Fructose Confused With HFCS
- Statement on Peru Trade Agreement
- Sweet Surprise
- Sweetener Reformulations
- Test Your Sweet-Smarts
- Tests Find No Quantifiable Mercury
- Tips for Healthier Summer Eating
- Wake Up & Smell the Coffee
- Position Statements
Moms Express Nutrition Concerns: Real Culprits Often Overlooked
Survey reveals moms’ current concerns may distract them from the truly important health and nutrition issues facing their children
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
September 8, 2008
CONTACT: Audrae Erickson, President
WASHINGTON, DC – A recent national survey* revealed that moms are more concerned with individual ingredients rather than their children’s overall caloric intake. Since total calories typically determine weight gain and even obesity, parents must understand the basic nutritional facts to keep their kids healthy.
“Many accusations today rely on speculation that tries to link single ingredients, including sweeteners such as high fructose corn syrup, to obesity,” said Dr. James M. Rippe, cardiologist and biomedical sciences professor at the University of Central Florida. “Americans are eating more of everything – it’s the excess calories and sedentary lifestyle that are having the greatest impact.”
Healthy Eating Top of Mind, But Focus Often Misplaced
The survey asked 400 mothers from across the country what their biggest nutrition concerns were for their children as they return to school. When asked what they are concerned with when buying food for their children, half responded with sugar (50%), trans fat (50%) and high fructose corn syrup (49%), while only one quarter cited the caloric content of food.
However, having their children eat healthy is also a top priority for parents. The majority of those surveyed (64%) have concerns about their children’s health and nutrition as they return to school, despite the fact that nearly 7 in 10 moms (68%) indicate their children’s schools have wellness policies. Concerns included that their children won’t eat healthful foods including fruits, vegetables, whole grains and lowfat dairy products (20%) and that they will choose junk food when not being supervised or provided with specific food choices (18%).
(See “Survey Key Findings” for more survey statistics)
Single Ingredients Don’t Make Kids Overweight or Obese
“No single food or ingredient is the cause of obesity or overweight children,” said Dr. Rippe. “Eating too many calories and getting too little exercise causes it.”
Excessive calories – from whatever source – can promote weight gain in children and adults alike. Sweet foods are meant to be enjoyed in moderation, Rippe added. The caloric density of high fructose corn syrup is relatively low—only 4 calories per gram, compared to 9 calories per gram for fats.
Research confirms that there is no difference between how our bodies metabolize high fructose corn syrup versus products such as table sugar or honey. Further, high fructose corn syrup contains no artifi cial or synthetic ingredients. The American Medical Association concluded in June 2008 that “high fructose corn syrup does not appear to contribute to obesity more than other caloric sweeteners.”
Consumption of high fructose corn syrup has been dropping in recent years, yet the rates of obesity and diabetes in the U.S. continue to rise, Rippe added. “And in many other parts of the world, obesity and diabetes are on the rise despite having little or no high fructose corn syrup.”
What Can Moms Do?
A father of four daughters and a practicing physician, Dr. Rippe is uniquely experienced with the challenges of fostering healthy habits among children. He notes:
- Good nutrition is important year-round, so that kids get the nutrients they need to grow and develop properly. But it’s especially important to keep in mind as students go back to school because research shows that good nutrition leads to better academic performance and improved behavior.
- Momentum is building for multi-level approaches to health promotion, which means there will be more emphasis on working with schools to improve child health.
- A sugar is a sugar, whether it comes from honey, high fructose corn syrup, table sugar, or fruit juices. Nutritionally they’re all the same. Moderation is the key.
- Kids should be encouraged to eat breakfast regularly. Even if time is short, nutritious, on-the-go foods like cereal bars and fruit or milk, are good options.
- Parents and teachers are important role models for their kids when it comes to healthy habits.
- Parents and teachers usually control when kids eat, but the kids themselves usually determine how much they eat.
- Physical activity is vital. Programs that encourage movement are getting more attention. There is growing interest in “walk to school” programs.
More science-based information on sweeteners is available at www.SweetSurprise.com.
CRA is the national trade association representing the corn refining (wet milling) industry of the United States. CRA and its predecessors have served this important segment of American agribusiness since 1913. Corn refiners manufacture sweeteners, ethanol, starch, bioproducts, corn oil, and feed products from corn components such as starch, oil, protein, and fiber.
Survey Key Findings
Moms don’t flag calories as a big concern; individual ingredients get more attention than total calories
- Only about one quarter (26%) of moms surveyed said that calories were “very important”
- About half said that sweeteners, such as sugar and high fructose corn syrup, were “very important”
- Moms cite sugar (50%), and high fructose corn syrup (49%) as equally important to their food purchase decisions
- Saturated fat (47%), fat (36%) and sodium (36%) all were seen as “very important,” ahead of calories
School concerns –bring or buy lunch?
- The majority of mothers (64%) have concerns about their children’s health and nutrition as they return to school; even though nearly 7 in 10 (68%) of them indicated that their schools have wellness policies, including those eliminating specifi c foods and beverages (43%)
- Moms’ biggest concerns are:
- That their kids won’t eat healthful foods lik • e fruits, vegetables, whole grains and low-fat dairy products (20%)
- That they will choose “junk food” when not being supervised or provided specifi c food choices (18%)
- That their kids won’t be as physically active as the summer months when school is in session (15%)
Will my children make the right food choices?
- A majority of mothers (68.5%) profess they have trust in their kids to make healthful food choices, yet the vast majority of mothers (84.2%) believe their kids engage and make detrimental food choices at least some of the time when they eat at school
- 41.8% believe their kids sometimes only eat a little healthy food and then throw the rest away
- 34.5% guess their children spend more time socializing than eating during their lunch periods
- 31.8% believe that their children sometimes throw away healthful foods without eating them
- 19.8% think their children trade their healthy food for less healthy options
- 13.3% guess their children buy less healthful foods without their knowledge, particularly those moms of teens 15-18 (43.8%)
- Moms feel they have about equal control over their children’s diets (50.3%) as the videogames (49.7%) they play when left unsupervised
- Interestingly, mothers of older children — teens aged 15-18 — feel they have more control over their children’s diets (68.8%) compared to mothers of younger children 7-14 years old (47.3%)
*Wakefield, a national polling firm, conducted the survey between August 18 and August 25, 2008 using an email invitation and an online survey. Results were collected from a random sample of 400 mothers ages 18 and older. Quotas are set to ensure reliable and accurate representation of the total U.S. population.