Toddlers in Boston are surprise coffee drinkers according to new study

Research shows 15 per cent of toddlers in Boston are regular coffee drinkers

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The Independent US

As many as 15 per cent of toddlers in Boston drink coffee every day, new research shows.

Researchers at Boston Medical Center found 15 per cent of two-year-olds having as much as four ounces of coffee each day.

They also found that Hispanic children were more likely than their non-Hispanic counterparts to be coffee drinkers. 

“Our results show that many infants and toddlers in Boston – and perhaps in the US – are being given coffee and that this could be associated with cultural practices,” said the study’s lead author Dr Anne Merewood.

The study, which will be published this month in the Journal of Human Lactation, followed 315 pairs of mothers and infants in an analysis of whether weight change during a child’s first week impacted body mass index (BMI) at age two.

While they looked at breast milk, formula milk, water and juices, the study’s authors were surprised to see mothers reporting that their children also drank coffee.

In later rounds of surveys a question was added to find out how much coffee children were consuming.

While at one year the rate of coffee consumption was 2.5 per cent of children, it jumped to 15 per cent at age two, with an average rate of 1.09 ounces.

Hispanic children were found to be the most likely to be drinking coffee, with infant girls also more likely than boys.

Previous international research has shown children less than five years of age in Cambodia, Australia and Ethiopia are given coffee.

However, other studies have shown that children and adolescents who drink coffee and caffeine have a higher likelihood of developing depression, sleep disturbances, obesity and type 1 diabetes.

A 2013 study showed toddlers who drank tea or coffee had triple the risk of being obese by the time they were in kindergarten.