“Do this, don’t do that” appears to be the standard teaching method followed by all. And children’s diet is no exception. It becomes vital to understand what’s good for them and what should be avoided. With several nutritional groups issuing their recommendations, it’s important to understand your child’s requirements and then plan their diet. Here’s a quick laydown of what they should and should not drink-
What to avoid
Drinking sugary beverages instead of water can add up to 200 calories. The leader of this research Allison Sylvetsky, an assistant professor at the George Washington University Milken Institute School of Public Health, US, said, “Our findings suggest that water should be recommended as the best choice for kids and teens.”
- Juices and sugary drinks
Everyone knows packed juices are a big NO for kids because they contain added sugars and preservatives. But even real juices contain a lot of sugar, and can lead to health woes. They’re bad for teeth, and can cause obesity. Nancy Brown, CEO of the American Heart Association said, “Nearly 40,000 people in the United States die each year from heart problems due to overconsumption of sugary drinks.” Plus, natural juices take away all the fibre from the fruit, according to Medium. Harvard researchers have pointed out that a 12 ounce glass of pure orange juice is equal to 10 teaspoons of sugar.
What to drink
- Breast milk and plain milk
For infants aged between 0-6 months, breast milk is vital, and is the best. Children can start sipping on water after 6 months, and can have about 3-4 cups of water every day from 1-3 years. Cow’s milk should ideally be introduced when the child turns one, but after consulting a paediatrician.
- Infant formula
In the initial years, a child can also be given infant formula. This is ideal till the child turns one. However, people often consider breast milk to have the best nutritional values.
It contains no sugar, to begin with. And it’s important for them to stay hydrated. It also depends on factors like age, temperature of your city, weight as to how much water kids should consume.
It’s important to make sure that they receive the most of nature’s produce. Fruits and vegetables must become an essential part of their diet for healthy growth and development. And, adults must also eat healthy, because kids are often influenced by what they eat.