Sugary drink alternatives for kids this summer
Sugar can be harmful, for both your health and your teeth, especially in children, after all as parents you are the ones shaping your child’s future and their pattern of good eating and healthy drinking right from the start. It’s up to you when – and if – you start introducing sugary drinks into their diets.
Did you know there are up to 7 teaspoons of sugar in some of the popular soft drinks on the shelves right now? That’s more than double the daily allowance, and as parents, you can stop buying these drinks and give your children healthier alternatives that still appeal to their *sweet tooth*
- Did you know that sugar hits the same *rewards pathway* in your brain as drugs do, and sugar is more addictive than cocaine?
Flavoured milk, fruit juices and soft drinks are full of sugar. Educating your child from an early age about excess sugar and what it does to your body and your teeth helps encourage them to make healthier choices later in life.
How to make your own soft drink
It’s easy to make your own delicious fizzy drinks, that are fun to make and that your kids will love. You’ll need –
- Bottle of sparkling water
- Fruit or herbal tea
Boil a litre of filtered tap water and steep 5-6 fruit or herbal tea bags for 30 minutes, add some honey to sweeten. Add the tea into half a bottle of sparkling spring water – and you have a hydrating and healthy drink.
Also Read This: Why the New Year is a Perfect Time to Fix Your Smile
How to make your own chocolate milk and shakes
Everyone loves chocolate milk!
What you need –
- Raw cacao powder or unsweetened hot chocolate powder
- Full fat milk
- Maple syrup to sweeten
Put two teaspoons of cocoa powder and a cup of milk into the blender and mix. You can froth the milk by blending it a bit longer, add some maple syrup and serve in a glass with a straw.
Replace energy drinks with coconut water
Thanks to lots of marketing, energy drinks are loved by teenagers, as they promise to rehydrate your body and give you an energy boost while playing sports, but, they are full of sugar, additives, colouring and caffeine. These drinks are best replaced by coconut water which is packed full of nature’s own electrolytes. Choose sugar-free coconut water which is full of potassium, calcium, sodium, magnesium and B vitamins to help energise and lift moods.
Fruit juice is not the healthy alternative you think it is
Did you know that fruit juice contains as much sugar as soft drink, they have very little nutrients and contribute to weight gain and dental issues? If your kids love fruit juice, encourage them to dilute it so there is more water than juice. Making your own juice is a great way to educate your kids and you can mix fruits and vegetables together – cucumbers and kale are neutral in flavour and pair well with kiwi fruit and berries.