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Fruit juice for children younger than one year is strictly a no-no, according to new guidelines by the American Academy of Paediatrics.

The academy is also recommending limiting juice consumption for toddlers and older children in its new guidelines, as ABC News Chief Women’s Health Correspondent Dr. Jennifer Ashton explained today on “Good Morning America.”

“While some 100-percent fruit juice can be OK, in general it doesn’t pack the nutritional punch that a lot of parents think it does,” Dr. Ashton explained.

“The big difference is in the fiber,” she said. “That is really important for [gastrointestinal] issues, so you always want to reach for the whole fruit versus the juice.”

The paediatrics academy has in recent years advised against giving fruit juice to children younger than 6 months old, but the new guidelines expand that to children younger than 1.

– The recommendations also call for limiting juice consumption to half cup per day for toddlers who are 1 to 3 years old.

– Half  cup – 1 cup maximum per day for children aged 4 to 6 years old.

– Children 7 to 18 years old, juice intake should be limited to 1 cup of the recommended 2 to 2 ½ cups of fruit servings per day.

The recommendations also advise,

  • Toddlers should not be given juice from bottles or easily transportable “sippy cups” that allow them to consume juice easily throughout the day. The excessive exposure of the teeth to carbohydrates can lead to tooth decay, as well. Toddlers should not be given juice at bedtime.
  • Children should be encouraged to eat whole fruits and be educated about the benefits of the fruit as compared with juice, which lacks dietary fiber and may contribute to excessive weight gain.
  • Human milk or infant formula is sufficient for infants, and low-fat/nonfat milk and water are sufficient for older children.
  • Consumption of unpasteurized juice products should be strongly discouraged for children of all ages.
  • Children who take specific forms of medication should not be given grapefruit juice, which can interfere with the medication’s effectiveness. In addition, fruit juice is not appropriate in the treatment of dehydration or management of diarrhea.

They also added, “We know that excessive fruit juice can lead to excessive weight gain and tooth decay,” co-author Steven A. Abrams, MD, FAAP said. “Pediatricians have a lot of information to share with families on how to provide the proper balance of fresh fruit within their child’s diet.”

Is juice a sometimes treat in your house?

Share your comments below.

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  • it is also not good for their teeth because of the sugar

    Reply

  • My children drink daily water and eat fresh fruits and have very healthy eating habits. I do buy juice in poptops as a treat when we go out for dinner, though they hardly get finished. And anything sweet sends them nuts, so not something we do every day.

    Reply

  • Our children mainly drink water or milk. They are only given fruit juice drink, not 100% juice. They tend to prefer the apple one, not the orange which is fairly acidic or other fruits – and not every day. They also eat fresh or cooked fruit.
    About 30 years ago special bottles of juice specifically for babvies were cold in small glass bottles.

    Reply

  • No juices in my house – water is the main thing we drink.

    Reply

  • No juice isn’t a buggy in our home. I like to make water and fruit infusions to drink. A jug of water, add some chopped up fruit, some herbs if you like. Pop in the fridge. Just delicious and thouroughly refreshing

    Reply

  • Our boy has only ever drunk water so now thats all he will drink. He doesn’t like juice.

    Reply

  • No, we don’t do juice in our house. Incidentally I juice some fresh oranges with my hand juicer. Only for the kids birthday parties I might buy some organic juices with pulp.

    Reply

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