Before I gave birth the doctors and parenting classes we went to all said don’t give juice to babies. So my kids always had water or milk, but I know that sweets flavors of juice are hard to deny. I know because their Nana snuck them a cup or two when she babysat.
The AAP has expanded it even further to limiting juice for older kids. Let’s face it, most kids love fruit juice because it’s sweet and it tastes good.
In a country where childhood obesity is becoming a growing health concern, why increase any health risks. Juice can have a lot of calories that are easy to consume very quickly, and so children can gain too much weight if they drink more than one serving a day. Frequent juice drinking can also contribute to tooth decay.
According to an updated policy statement published May 22, the American Academy of Pediatrics recommends:
- No juice before age 1
- For toddlers ages 1-3, up to half a cup per day (4 oz)
- For children ages 4-6, up to three-quarters cup per day (6 oz)
- For children and teens ages 7-18, up to 1 cup per day (8 oz)
- Do not put juice in a sippy cup or bottle that the child carries around
- Offer your child whole fruit, which has both the vitamins and fiber that children need.
Read more about the American Academy of Pediatrics recommendations and reasoning on their website aap.org.