Public release date: 8-Aug-2007
Diet foods and drinks for children may inadvertently lead to overeating and obesity, says a new report from the University of Alberta.
“The use of diet food and drinks from an early age into adulthood may induce overeating and gradual weight gain through the taste conditioning process that we have described,” Pierce said
Pierce added that his team’s “taste conditioning process” theory may explain “puzzling results” from other studies, such as a recent one from researchers at the University of Massachusetts, who found links between diet soda consumption (among children”) and a higher risk of obesity, diabetes and heart disease, but further research is necessary with older animals using a variety of taste-related cues.
“One thing is clear at this point,” Pierce said, “our research has shown that young animals can be made to overeat when low-calorie foods and drinks are given to them on a daily basis, and this subverts their bodies’ energy-balance system