To examine whether sugar-sweetened beverage (SSB) intake during infancy predicts SSB intake at 6 years of age.
A longitudinal cohort analysis of 1333 US children was conducted by using data from the 2005–2007 Infant Feeding Practices Study II and the 2012 Follow-Up Study at 6 years of age. The exposure variables were maternal-reported SSB intakes during infancy. The outcome variable was maternal-reported SSB intake at age 6 years. Multivariable logistic regression analyses were used to calculate adjusted odds ratios (aOR) for associations of SSB intake during infancy with consuming SSBs ≥1 time/day at 6 years old after controlling for baseline child’s and parent’s characteristics.
Based on maternal recall, approximately one-fifth of children consumed SSBs at least 1 time/day at age 6 years. Adjusted odds of consuming SSBs at age 6 years ≥1 time/day was significantly associated with any SSB intake during infancy (aOR, 2.22 vs none), age at SSB introduction (aOR, 2.33 for age ≥6 months and 2.01 for age <6 months vs never), and mean SSB intake during age 10 to 12 months (aOR, 2.72 for 1 to <2 times/week and 2.57 for ≥3 times/week vs none).
SSB intake during infancy significantly increased the likelihood of consuming SSBs ≥1 time/day at 6 years of age. Our findings suggest that infancy may be an important time for mothers to establish healthy beverage practices for their children and these findings can be used to inform intervention efforts to reduce SSB intake among children.