I think the winner of this beverage battle is up in the air, though I could be wrong because I’m not a doctor, or nutritionist. I’m just a dad with a chubby cheeked little four year old.
Let’s face it: juice pouches and boxes make a parent’s life much more convenient. But as with most convenient things there are drawbacks. Most, if not all, decent quality 100% fruit juice is highly caloric with calorie counts ranging in the 50-120 range depending on the size of the box and what they consider a serving size. For some kids that can be up to ten percent of their daily caloric intake in just one juice box. On the other hand the low calorie drinks have chemicals (additives?) in them that you need a chemist to decipher. It kind of feels like six of one and half dozen of the other. Lucky for us our son has no taste preference so we tend to go for whatever is on sale, though there are several major brands that are not allowed in our house whether they are on sale or not.
I recall a time when counting calories helped you to not get fat, and burning more calories than you took in was the only way to lose weight. Now it’s carb counting, hunger suppression, gastric bypass and a thousand fad diets. In my house we lean more toward conventional wisdom when picking up drinks for school, however Devin’s pediatrician recently said “no juice!” when asked what he should be drinking. She suggested that he drink a little OJ, and reduced fat milk. (Disclaimer: Her recommendations may have come from dealing with my son as an individual case, so ask your own darn pediatrician what your kid should be drinking if you have concerns.)
So what are your little people drinking? And what are you drinking when no one is looking?
Well it’s mostly watered down juice or water for my kids. Well at least for the little one. My 8yo has too many influences that have led her down the dark path of soda – but we try to keep that to a minimum. Soda is a special, occasional drink – only when her little sister isn’t around. On a daily basis, they both drink 1 part juice to two parts water or seltzer once or twice a day – and then the rest is water.
I try to lead by example, so I mostly drink water or seltzer. But when no one’s looking, I can’t resist a good root beer or an iced soy chai latte.
My boys drink a bit of 2% organic milk or rice milk, and a decent supply of juice. They generally have some Minute Maid kid OJ in the morning (cut with H2O) that has added vitamins and calcium, and 1 juice box (either juicy juice or trader joes brand) later in the day. Other than that they drink water.
Water and 1% milk at home, water and 2% milk at school. Juice boxes for special occasions and only outside (they squish those boxes every time). Beloved and the boys split one can of caffeine free diet soda during Monday night football! (Whoo-hoo!) Often on Saturday morning they ask for rooibos tea cooled with a bunch of milk, which they love.
When no one’s looking, I drink coffee (mostly decaf, and made with splenda and plenty of creamer) and way too much soda.
Thanks for your blog, I appreciate it! You commented once on a post of mine that had been reposted elsewhere… Pointed out that we might have my son looking a little like a butler in our efforts to teach him social skills and polite assertiveness. We thought a lot about that and have modified our approach, so thank you for that. And I’ve been reading your blog ever since, I think, just now de-lurking!
we almost had friends “break up” with us when they declared “we are not juice people!”, horrified that we gave their little girl a glass of grapefruit juice. everything about parenting is political these days. (and for the record: milk, juice, water)
At home: soy milk, watered down juice (100%), and water
At school: lowfat cow’s milk, water
I keep juice boxes in the car in case she gets thirsty, but try to limit them.
Mama consumes mostly water. Occasionally juice, and very rarely an ice cold Mountain Dew – oh the sugary/caffeine-y goodness of it!
Kids: skim milk, (low-fat Vanilla soy milk for the non-dairy enthusiasts) and water. Lemonade, sprite or juice for the rare occasions we got to a restaurant. Sips of daddy’s diet mt dew when Mom’s not looking. The last sip of Mom’s coffee if she remembers not to drink it.
Dad: black coffee, diet mt. dew, an occasional beer
Mom: coffee with hazelnut flavored cream & sweet-n-low, water
Well, we do Rice milk only in regards to milk, 100% fruit juices in moderation, and good ole H2O.
Meanwhile I have been trying to avoid High Fructose Corn Syryp and try to drink sodas sweetened with Splenda.
Wow…your readers are exotic!…The Cool-Aid man at home and I’m lucky b/c the 4 year old loves chocolate milk..I’ve recently begun purchasing 1% milk so less fat but that damn chocolate syrup..but the whole soda thing does suck.
Another problem with the juice is that it’s bad the teeth. Nothing like having your son get crowns by the time he’s 6.
We do the juice, but we fill it half full of water to dilute it a bit. And she loves milk more than anything. Which is cool.
We drink 2%Milk, chocolate syrup for the kids (only adds 50 calories, per my pediatrition) Juice is sometimes watered down. I’m the water drinker, dad is addicted to Diet pepsi. Got to work on that. fyi, if you are worried about the teeth, those dried fruit snacks and gummi snacks are just as bad as juice. Good luck, we’re all in this together!
Please people! There is nothing wrong with 100% fruit juice..straight, no chaser! My son is 16 and has NEVER had a cavity, nor is he overwt. He is highly intelligent, extremely mannerable and he drinks juice. Make the children brush their teeth. Of course water is a must although I must admit I have always had to force him to drink it. I don’t do sodas, drink plenty of water daily and have at least 1c of coffee per day..lighten up folks. And if you are concerned about childhood obesity make the kids go outside and PLAY!!!!
Kids drink milk or juice mixed with water.
I drink coffee, water and an occasional margarita.
Whether it’s drinks or food, I try to get stuff that’s most natural with the least amount of ingredients.
The six year-old got hooked on juice by his daddy. He also likes chocolate milk. I’m not worried about his weight since he’s in the 95th percentile for height and the 15th for weight.
The three year old loves water — it has to be cold or he tries to throw a tantrum. He also likes sodas though but he only gets a little sip occasionally.
As for moi? I drink a lot of water. The vanilla soymilk. I like white grape juice but rarely buy it. I drink lots of tea.
Coke Zero is my guilty pleasure. I have one can a day.
Seems like you are really into this fatherhood thing. This is what it is all about you are doing a great job keep up the good work.
Ok. I have to comment here. It might seem like there is nothing wrong with plain old 100% juice. After all it is natural, right? I had a friend and her daughter ask me why I water my son’s juice down 50% or more with water. She said to me “We had straight juice as kids and we turned out fine.” My response was, “It has been shown to increase the risk of adult onset diabetes (which by the way is becoming epidemic in this country).” There was a lot of silence at the table – why? Because she and her adult daughter had been diagnosed with adult onset diabetes within the last year. I rest my case.