Even just a little time spent watching a 30-minute children’s program on TV will no doubt show the sheer volume of juices and drinks being marketed to eager kid viewers. It seems like everyday there is a new product being targeted to kids, and it is easy to become dazed and confused by it all.
Supermarket isles are stocked to the brim with different juice and beverage options, despite the fact that today’s medical professionals continue to recommend that kids stay away from many of these drinks. Why? Well, for one, because they often contain a lot of sugar, which in large quantities can lead to such things as cavities and weight gain. The American Academy of Pediatrics suggests limiting juice consumption to six fluids ounces a day for children less than 6 years old, and 12 fluid ounces a day for kids more than 7 years old. So while milk and water are the best beverage bets for children, there is still a place for juice in a healthy diet.
The trick, of course, is choosing the best juice among the vast selection of brands available. Many of these drinks can hardly be called "juice" at all, containing more added sugar and preservatives then actual fruit juice. High-fructose corn syrup can run rampant in kids’ juice drinks, as it adds the sweetness kids want without a high cost. The best choices are juices that contain just that — juice. The ingredients list should be short, with real fruit juice at the top. Here are our picks for the best and worst juice drink choices for kids.