4 Healthy Drinks Your Kids Will Love
As parents our job is to ensure that our children drink enough fluids and keep them hydrated throughout the day. When children feel the sudden thirst, they may be drawn to the closet, and often the most convenient way to find a cold beverage: the vending machine. However, this sugar machine clearly isn’t the best option for anyone.
Despite the constant health messages to limit the intake of sodas and other sugar-filled beverages, nearly two-thirds of children between the ages 2 – 19 are drinking at least one sugary drink a day. According to research, over 30% of children consume over two sugary beverages a day. Furthermore, most sugar-filled beverages also contain caffeine. The amount of caffeine found in sodas and energy drinks vary but can be as high as 130 mg found in a single 12 oz. serving. In fact, a 12 oz. soda contains about 160 calories and 36 grams of sugar; that’s nearly four teaspoons!
Instead of feeding our children with more sugar than they need, we’ve listed done some of the best drink options to help you take charge of your child’s health.
Coconut water is rich in potassium, electrolytes, antioxidants, and low in sugar. Be sure to avoid any other beverage that advertises coconut water, as they are often high in sugar and calories. You can opt for plain coconut water or drink it straight from the source.
When children are sick, herbal teas make the best aid as they contain medicinal qualities that taste great. Opt for teas that contain rich ingredients like chamomile. The calming effects of chamomile can help reduce stress and prevent the onset of insomnia – both of which may lead to weight gain and obesity.
Milk is important for everyone’s diet. It is rich in vitamin D, calcium, and protein; all of which are needed for development. Kids should aim for about 16 – 24 ounces of milk or milk alternatives such as almond milk, soy, or coconut per day.
According to the American Journal of Public Health, nearly 45% of children between the ages six and nine are poorly hydrated. As a result, dehydration will lead to poor health and low school performance. While water may be your child’s least favourite beverage, it is the best option to quench thirst and relieve hydration without any added fat, sugar, or calories. You can also add flavour to your water by using fruit for a sugar with all natural taste.
Jazz up your child’s beverage
With just a tall glass of water, you can add berries, citrus blends, melons, cucumber, or even apples to infuse your water with natural flavours. Be sure to opt for healthy substitutes such as agave nectar, and cinnamon to create fun combinations.