In January 2018 researchers from Brazil published their review of the medical scientific literature to assess the association between consumption of ultra-processed foods and body fat during childhood and adolescence. A total of 26 studies were included in the review that evaluated ultra-processed food groups (such as snacks, fast foods, junk food and convenience food) or specific ultra-processed foods (soft drinks/sweetened beverages, sweets, chocolate and ready-to-eat cereals). Results showed that in most of the studies a higher consumption of groups of ultra-processed food and soft drinks/sweetened beverages increased body fat during childhood and adolescence.
Costa CS et al. Consumption of ultra-processed foods and body fat during childhood and adolescence: a systematic review. Public Health Nutr. 2018 Jan;21(1):148-159