Water and Beverage Consumption among a Nationally Representative Sample of Children and Adolescents in the United Arab Emirates.
Ali HI., Al Dhaheri AS., Elmi F., Ng SW., Zaghloul S., Ohuma EO., Qazaq HS.
There are limited studies examining water consumption among individuals in hot climates. We assessed the daily total water intake from plain water, other beverages, and food in a nationally representative sample of children and adolescents aged 6-18 years in the United Arab Emirates. Total water intake was compared against the recommendations of the Institute of Medicine and the European Food Safety Authority. Sociodemographic information, 24 h dietary recall, physical activity levels, and anthropometric data were collected from 527 participants. The mean ± SE of total water intake was 1778.4 ± 33.8 mL/day. Plain drinking water was the largest contributor to total water intake (51.6%), followed by food (27.3%). Sugar-sweetened beverages constituted 13.9% of water intake. The proportion of participants who met the Institute of Medicine recommendations ranged from 15% (males aged 14-18) to 25% (children aged 6-8). The proportion of participants who met the European Food Safety Authority recommendations ranged from 31% (females aged 14-18) to 36% (males aged 14-18). The water-to-energy ratio was 1.0-1.15 L/1000 kcal, meeting recommendations. The majority of participants failed to meet water intake recommendations, highlighting the need for targeted interventions to promote increased water consumption among children and adolescents.