Healthy drinks for kids

Published 7:27 am Saturday, July 21, 2018

Looking for healthy drinks for your kids during these hot summer months?

Look no further than milk and water. Both are full of nutrients and are the best thirst quenchers.

What kids drink can greatly affect how many calories they consume and the amount of calcium, which is needed to build strong bones, their bodies get.

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The best drinks for preschoolers — and kids of all ages — are milk and water. Whenever possible, discourage your kids from drinking soda and other sugary, calorie-dense drinks.

Here’s how much calcium kids need every day:

•Toddlers (ages 1 to 3 years): 700 mg of calcium daily

•Kids (ages 4 to 8 years): 1000 mg of calcium daily

•Older kids (ages 9 to 18 years): 1,300 mg of calcium daily

The U.S. Dietary Guidelines’ recommendation for milk or equivalent dairy products or fortified soy beverages are:

•Kids (ages 2 to 3) should drink 2 cups every day

•Kids (ages 4 through 8) should drink 2 ½ cups every day

•Kids (ages 9 through 18) should drink 3 cups every day

Too much juice, juice drinks, sports drinks and soda can crowd out the water and milk that kids need. Sugary drinks can also pile on calories.If your child likes juice, be sure it’s 100 percent rather than a juice drink that typically has 10 percent fruit juice.

When it comes to soda, remember those drinks have no nutritional value and are high in sugar. Drinking soda and other sugary drinks can cause tooth decay. Colas and other sodas often contain caffeine, which is best kept to a minimum. The effects of a caffeinated beverage on a child will be much more pronounced than on an adult because kids weigh less and are still growing and developing. Too much caffeine can cause jitteriness, an upset stomach, headaches and sleeping problems. The American Academy of Pediatrics discourages caffeine consumption for all children.

Strawberry Flavored Water

Serves: 6

All you need

•15-20 strawberries, stem removed and halved

•A handful of fresh mint leaves

•Ice cubes

All you do

1. Fill a jug/pitcher with strawberries, mint, and ice cubes.

2. Fill the pitcher all the way, leaving a couple inches at the top.

Source: Ruchis Kitchen

The information is not intended as medical advice. Please consult a medical professional for individual advice.