No Fruit Juice for Kids Before Age 1, Says the AAP
Fruit juice has historically been recommended by pediatricians as a source of vitamin C and water for infants and young children, but due to growing concern over sugar consumption, a new policy released by the American Academy of Pediatrics has revised its fruit juice guidelines for children.
Did you know that one serving of orange juice (an 8-oz. glass) contains a whopping 22 grams of sugar? According to the AAP, the high sugar content in juice contributes to increased calorie consumption and the risk of tooth decay. The lack of protein and fiber of juice can also predispose children to inappropriate weight gain.
The new AAP policy suggests that fruit juice should not be provided to children younger than 1 years, unless there’s “a strong clinical basis for it in the management of constipation.” Meanwhile, maximum daily intakes of 100% juice products recommended for children of all ages have been reduced. For children ages 1-3 years, the max recommended daily intake is now 4 oz.; for children ages 4-6 years, it’s 4-6 oz.; and for children 7 and older, it’s 8 oz.
The AAP recommends encouraging children to eat whole fruits rather than consuming juice, as whole fruits have the added benefit of fiber. Additionally, AAP advises that toddlers shouldn’t be given juice from bottles or “sippy cups” because they make it easy to consume throughout the day.
We can all admit that juice tastes good, and children tend to accept it readily, but the AAP advises not to use juice to calm an upset child. If you’re looking for a delicious drink your child will love that has no sugar or diet sweeteners, try hint® water. The fruit-infused unsweetened flavored water is becoming a more popular addition to children’s lunchboxes as concern over sugar consumption rises. Better yet, hint water is available in 19 flavors and counting, so picky toddlers will have plenty of options to choose from!
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Will you be reconsidering how you feed your children after reading this news?