Healthy Drinks for Kids
Looking down the grocery store aisles, you'll see cartons of milk, bottles of juice, and many other products packaged with attractive labels. But, how do you know if you are selecting a healthy drink for your kids? Here are some tips for your next trip to the grocery store.
MilkMilk is a great source of calcium for your kids. The United States Department of Agriculture offers these recommendations of how much milk to drink:
- 2-3 years old: 2 cups (Note: 1 cup = 8 ounces or 236 milliliters)
- 4-8 years old: 2-½ cups
- 9 years old and up: 3 cups
Fruit JuiceIf your child is longing for something sweet to drink, 100% fruit juices are a healthier alternative than sodas, fruit drinks, or sweet, fruity caffeinated teas. However, pediatricians warn against allowing your child to overindulge in fruit juices, as their high sugar content contribute to conditions like obesity and tooth decay.According to the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), children 1-6 years old should limit their fruit juice intake to 4-6 ounces (118-177 milliliters) per day. For children aged 7-18, juice intake should be 8-12 ounces (236-354 milliliters) per day. Juice should also not be introduced to an infants diet before 6 months of age. The AAP also suggests you encourage your child to choose whole fruit over fruit juices to meet their recommended daily fruit intake.
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