Study: U.S. Kids Overdosing on Snack Food

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Researchers at the University of North Carolina say America's children are eating more unhealthy snacks and consuming more calories.

The new nutrition study published in the March issue of Health Affairs found that kids snack an average of three times a day.

"Our study shows that some children, including very young children, snack almost continuously throughout the day," said Barry M. Popkin, PhD, a professor of nutrition at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, in a news release.

Specifically, the report shows children are eating an average of 168 more calories per day than kids did in 1977.

According to the study, they're eating more french fries as their snack and not enough fruits and vegetables.

"Such findings raise concerns that more children in the United States are moving toward a dysfunctional eating pattern, one that can lead to unhealthy weight gain and obesity," Popkin said.

The study's researchers reviewed national surveys of 31,000 children 2 to 18-years old from the 1977 to 2006.

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