Say NO to Juice
In addition to avoiding soda and fruit drinks, our pediatricians recommend avoiding all juice — even 100% juice. Juice, soda, and fruit drinks all contribute extra sugar and calories. They can also lead to cavities.
Say YES to Fruit
Children should eat whole fruit. Fruit contains fiber and it takes longer to eat the same amount of calories as fruit juice. Whole fruit increases fullness and decreases spikes in blood sugar. When we drink calories, our body doesn’t get the same fullness signals that it does with food. The feeling of fullness from beverages quickly goes away and leaves us feeling hungry again.
What about constipation?
Small amounts of prune, pear, or apple juice are sometimes recommended for constipation. Talk to your child’s pediatrician before adding these juices to your child’s diet for constipation.
Say YES to Water & Milk
- Only human milk and/or infant formula are needed to meet fluid needs for infants up to 12 months.
- Milk and water are the only fluids needed for older children. Talk to your child’s pediatrician about the type and amount of milk that is best for your child.
- Water is the only beverage generally needed for children exercising one hour or less. Children should rehydrate after exercising to replace the fluids they lost during exercise through sweat. Sports drinks for electrolyte replacement may be needed for moderate to heavy exercise that lasts over one hour.
- Electrolyte replacement solutions may be needed for dehydration in children during illnesses.
Ways to Break the Juice Habit
- Dilute juice to a 50/50 blend or add a splash of juice to water
- Serve water with thinly sliced fruit
- Provide a reusable water bottle for school, lunch boxes, and after-school activities
- Don’t bring juice into the house
- Chill tap water by storing it in a pitcher in the refrigerator
- Filter the tap water to improve the taste for children
- Be a good role model!
Discuss any questions you have with your pediatrician.
Heyman, M.B. and Abrams, S.A. 2017. Fruit juice in infants, children, and adolescents: current recommendations. Pediatrics. 139 (6). http://pediatrics.aappublications.org/content/139/6/e20170967. Accessed February 14, 2018.
What juices can help relieve constipation? Healthline.com. https://www.healthline.com/health/digestive-health/juice-for-constipation#modal-close. Reviewed on March 23, 2016. Accessed February 14, 2018.
Treating dehydration with electrolyte solution. Healthychildren.org. https://www.healthychildren.org/English/health-issues/conditions/abdominal/Pages/Treating-Dehydration-with-Electrolyte-Solution.aspx. Reviewed on November 21, 2015. Accessed February 14, 2018.
Hydrate right during physical activity. Eatright.org. http://www.eatright.org/resource/fitness/sports-and-performance/hydrate-right/hydrate-right. Reviewed on March 23, 2015. Accessed February 14, 2018.