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Toddler's Mom Defends 'Pageant Crack' for Daughter, 6

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By Brendan Giusti, Christian Post Reporter
February 10, 2012|8:12 am

June Shannon defends her decision to give her young daughter sugary snacks and caffeinated drinks before a pageant.

The "pageant crack" was given to 6-year-old Alana Thompson last month on "Toddlers and Tiarras."

The Georgia woman reportedly bragged about giving her daughter Red Bull and Mountain Dew, sometimes known as "go-go juice." She also served her daughter a diet of Pixie Sticks.

It was all a move to keep Alana awake and alert, according to reports.

"Everybody does it," Shannon said. "There are normal people who give their kids this, so why is it such a big issue with us pageant moms that do it all weekend to keep our kids energized and awake?"

But the effects could be far more ominous than some parents think.

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"Energy drinks are never appropriate for children or adolescents. In general, caffeine-containing beverages, including soda, should be avoided," an American Academy of Pediatrics report said.

The world of beauty pageants is similar to that of sports.

Long grueling hours spent training – some with a ball and cleats, others with a tiara a runway.

The shocking "pageant crack" is no different than the "blood doping" and performance enhancing drug use is sports, some say.

Even Little League has had its share of controversy by bringing in older players to participate in the games, which have an age cap.

During the 2001 Little League World Series, Danny Almonte was pitching better than anyone expected. He pitched a perfect game and his team, which was from the Bronx, ended up finishing in third place.

Almonte, however, was 14, which disqualified his team from the tournament. He even reportedly had his birth certificate changed in an attempt to beat the system and give his team an edge over the competition.

Though not common, competitions involving children do bring out severe behaviors in adults.

And it's something that can have lasting effects.

"Research has shown that the dose of caffeine delivered in a single can of soft drink is sufficient to produce mood and behavioral effects. Children who haphazardly consume caffeine are at risk for going through alternating cycles of withdrawal and stimulation," researcher Roland Griffiths said.

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