High sugar and high calorie beverages have been a significant contributor to childhood obesity. It is important to start monitoring how many sugary beverages kids are drinking in a day. There are so many natural, low calorie and flavorful drink choices available these days. On the flip side, there are even more nutrient less and high calorie drink choices easily available as well. Big brand companies have dedicated millions, if not billions, of dollars to creating media that make kids want to drink their high sugar beverages as opposed to water or other healthy drink choices.
When it comes to picking out healthier beverages it is important to read the food label. One orange juice brand could have 50 extra calories from sugar than another brand of orange juice. This is the same for all kinds of beverages.
Staying hydrated is very important for your body. Proper hydration helps with weight maintenance, your mood, clearing your body of toxins, focus and cognition and overall health.
Signs of Being Dehydrated:
- Poor concentration
- Cracked lips
- Dry mouth
- Dark urine
Kids Total Daily Beverage and Drinking Water Requirements
|Age Range||Gender||Total Water (Cups/Day)|
|4 to 8 years||Girls and Boys||7|
|9 to 13 years||Girls||9|
|14 to 18 years||Girls||10|
TYPES OF BEVERAGES
There are dozens of zero calorie sparkling water brands on the market. Drinking plain water all day can get boring, sparkling water is a great way to get flavor variety in your day.
- Simply Truth
This is water that is infused with fruit flavor. There is no added sugar or calories. This can be a bit pricey but can be worth it if it gets your kids to stay hydrated.
Honest Kids Juices:
These juices are available in many stores and many flavors. They are 35 calories per box which is much better than a bunch of other juices. There is no high fructose corn syrup in this brand.
Coconut water is rich in nutrients and electrolytes, making it an excellent choice for helping children re-hydrate after sickness or physical activity. This is about 60 calories per 8 ounces. This should not be the only source of hydration during the day since it is higher in calories. Coconut water is a more natural way to replenish vitamins, minerals and electrolytes. A popular brand is Vita Coco.
Horizon Organic Low Fat Milk
This milk product is available at most supermarkets and are packaged in convenient to-go boxes. Dairy products are full of calcium which is important for a child’s growth. Kids should get between 700-1300 mg of calcium per day depending on their age. Stick to low fat dairy products to help with calorie control.
The best kid friendly beverage is WATER! You can help you kids get enough water into their day in multiple ways:
- Be a good example. If your kids see you drinking water then it is more likely that they will want to drink more water as well.
- Use a cool water bottle. There are a ton of kid friendly water bottles available at dollar stores, amazon or target.
- Have a Brita filter filled with clean water at all times in the refrigerator.
Let us know if you have any tricks up your sleeve to help increase your child’s water intake!