Even if they are 100% natural juices, homemade, free of colorants and other additives. Juice is not a drink that pediatricians and nutritionists recommend for children. They are not really beneficial for children as is whole fruit and they could cause health problems.
“Fruit juice does not offer any nutritional benefit to children under 1 year of age and it should not be included in your diet, ”states the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP).
The AAPP indicates that the juice could be included in a healthy diet, in children older than one year, but it should be limited.
Juice limit based on age
Small from 1 to 3 years, maximum, 4 ounces daily. To young children they should not be given juice from bottles or “sippy cups” that allow them to easily consume juice during the day.
Children 4-6 years, should be restricted to 4 to 6 ounces daily
Children from 7 to 18 years old, juice intake should be limited to 8 ounces or one cup.
They cause cavities
Juices are a concentrated source of sugar for children. Excessive exposure of teeth to carbohydrates can lead to cavities.
They promote childhood obesity
As little as 4 ounces of apple juice can contain 14 grams of sugar, that’s about 3 teaspoons of sugar. Some natural juices come to have the same amount of sugar (although naturally) and calories than soda.
Studies have found a significant link between the consumption of these beverages and the obesity in children.
Health problems in the future
As we anticipated, the sugar and more concentrated calories in fruit juices can cause obesity and inadequate weight gain in children. Excessive weight gain is associated with hypertension, stroke, diabetes and others negative health problems in the future, as UC Davis Health explains.
It can replace the consumption of other beneficial liquids
Drinking fruit juice can replace the consumption of other beneficial liquids. Breast milk or infant formula it is enough for infants; as well as the milk and water are enough for older children.
It does not have the same benefits as fruit
Unlike juices, whole fruit provides fiber through skin and pulp. Also, some fruits have edible skins, like apples. Disposing of the skin removes much of the fiber and most of the flavonoids, which have effects antioxidants and anti-inflammatories.
Eat the whole fruit provides nutrients, fewer calories, is digested slowly, provides greater satiety, glucose release is slower and it does not have the negative effects of juice.
Cconsuming the whole orange is much better than the juice, it gives you vitamin C, half the sugar of a 12-ounce glass of orange juice and double the fiber, notes the Harvard School of Public Health.
Is it safer to dilute fruit juice with water?
Even diluted juice can increase the risk of cavities and decrease the possibility of drinking other beneficial liquids.
Fruit juice is not appropriate for the treatment of dehydration or the management of diarrhea.
If you decide to give children juice, choose 100% fruit juice instead of sweetened juice.
To young children juice should not be given at bedtime. Leaves teeth covered in sugar and feeds bacteria that cause cavities.
If the child is under any medical treatment, consider that the grapefruit juice can interfere with the effectiveness of some medicines.
Pediatricians recommend encouraging children to eat whole fruits and they should be educated on the benefits of fruit compared to juice.
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