Try This, Not That: Kid’s Drinks
ByKatarina Meister, ND •September 3, 2021
The amount of sugar-sweetened beverages your child drinks can add up quickly. Check out my post on why we need to pay better attention to the sugar content in our children here. Substituting these beverages with a healthy alternative can significantly decrease their overall weekly sugar consumption.
Instead of regular water, try infused water.
First, increase water intake. If your child desires a flavor, infuse their favorite fruit combination. I have listed some infusion options below to get you started:
- Mint & Cucumber
- Watermelon, Ginger & Lime
- Strawberry & Lemon
- Blueberry & Raspberry
First tip: Read ingredient labels! Avoid purchasing anything with ingredients you don’t recognize, added sugars, or with more than 5% sugar.
Instead of regular soda, try Olipop.
Olipop is a new kind of soda, that contains botanicals as well as the added benefits of prebiotics and plant fiber with only 2-5 g of sugar per can. In contrast, 1 can of Coca-Cola contains 39 grams of sugar.
1 Serving of Coca-Cola
1 Serving of Olipop
Instead of fruit juice, try a homemade smoothie at home.
I am not a huge fan of fruit juice mainly because it lacks the fiber from the whole fruit, and is pretty much just sugar. So, skip out on the sugar entirely and opt for a whole foods smoothie that also will add fiber, healthy fats, whole fruits, and greens. My go-to smoothie for kids, PB & J Smoothie
Instead of a regular “100%” juice box, try Honest Kids Drink Pouches.
This is the lowest serving of sugar for a kid’s juice box on the market, providing a total of 9 grams of sugar per serving. This is more than half the sugar content of the leading juice box, Apple & Eve 100% juice box, which provides 34 grams of sugar per serving.
1 Serving of 100% Motts Juice Box
1 Serving of Honest Kids Pouch
Instead of a sugar-sweetened sports drink such as Gatorade/Powerade, try K!DS LUV Vitamin & Mineral enhanced hydrating drink.
After periods of physical activity it is important to rehydrate your child with electrolytes they may have lost through sweating (e.g., sodium, calcium, potassium, chloride, phosphate, and magnesium). Electrolytes have been found superior to water alone in rehydrating active individuals such as athletes who routinely lose electrolytes. The reason why I love this brand, K!DS LUV, is that it has zero sugar and is designed for kids with tons of flavors! Plus it also contains vitamins and minerals as an added nutritional bonus.
1 Serving of Gatorade
1 Serving of K!DS LUV Vitamin & Mineral Hydrating drink
Other supplemental options.
- If you are looking for an electrolyte replacement that also contains added benefits of trace minerals try Trace Mineral ConcenTrace Mineral Liquid by Trace Minerals. This can be found at Whole Foods. This is my top recommendation because it contains no other added ingredients and meets the top quality certification, cGMP. This can easily be added to any drink or taken with food.
- If you are looking for a powder option try Ultima Replenisher electrolytes, which can also be found at Whole Foods. This brand contains zero sugar and has different flavors that may be more suitable for kids.
Manz F, Wentz A. The importance of good hydration for the prevention of chronic diseases. Nutr Rev. 2005 Jun;63(6 Pt 2):S2-5. doi: 10.1111/j.1753-4887.2005.tb00150.x. PMID: 16028566.
Pence J, Bloomer RJ. Impact of Nuun Electrolyte Tablets on Fluid Balance in Active Men and Women. Nutrients. 2020 Oct 2;12(10):3030. doi: 10.3390/nu12103030. PMID: 33023276; PMCID: PMC7600513.
Editor’s Note: The information in this article is intended for your educational use only. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health practitioners with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition and before undertaking any diet, supplement, fitness, or other health program.