Fruit juice NOT recommended for children, particularly infants

According to a recent policy statement from the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), fruit juice offers no nutritional benefit to children under age 1 and should not be included in their diet.

WebMD colored water

Infant nutrition

According to Melvin B. Heyman, MD, FAAP, co-author of the AAP policy statement statement, “Parents may perceive fruit juice as healthy, but it is not a good substitute for fresh fruit and just packs in more sugar and calories.”

Moreover, although “[s]mall amounts [of fruit juice] in moderation are fine for older kids, but are absolutely unnecessary for children under 1” (emphasis added).

Specific nutritional guidance for infants includes:

  • Human milk or infant formula is sufficient for infants, and low-fat/nonfat milk and water are sufficient for older children.
  • Toddlers should not be given juice from bottles or easily transportable “sippy cups” that allow them to consume juice easily throughout the day.
  • Excessive exposure of the teeth to the carbohydrates in fruit juice can lead to tooth decay.
  • Toddlers should not be given juice at bedtime.
  • Fruit juice is not appropriate in the treatment of dehydration or management of diarrhea.
  • Children who take specific forms of medication should not be given grapefruit juice, which can interfere with the medication’s effectiveness.

Fruit juice

Moreover, the policy statement claims that consumption of unpasteurized juice products should be strongly discouraged for children of all ages, and even 100-percent fresh or reconstituted fruit juice should be limited depending on a child’s age. Children and adolescents continue to be the highest consumers of juice and juice drinks.

Historically, fruit juice was recommended by pediatricians as a source of vitamin C and as an extra source of water for healthy infants and young children as their diets expanded to include solid foods with higher renal solute load. It was also sometimes recommended for children with constipation. Fruit juice is marketed as a healthy, natural source of vitamins and, in some instances, calcium. Because juice tastes good, children readily accept it. Although juice consumption has some benefits, it also has potential detrimental effects. High sugar content in juice contributes to increased calorie consumption and the risk of dental caries. In addition, the lack of protein and fiber in juice can predispose to inappropriate weight gain (too much or too little).

Fresh fruit

The AAP supports policies that seek to reduce fruit juice consumption and promote fresh fruit. According to the APP, fruit juice offers no nutritional benefits over whole fruit for infants and children and has no essential role in healthy, balanced diets of children.

WebMD apples oranges

Juice should not be introduced into the diet of infants before 12 months of age unless clinically indicated. The intake of juice should be limited to, at most, 4 ounces/day in toddlers 1 through 3 years of age, and 4 to 6 ounces/day for children 4 through 6 years of age. For children 7 to 18 years of age, juice intake should be limited to 8 ounces or 1 cup of the recommended 2 to 2.5 cups of fruit servings per day.

8 Responses to “Fruit juice NOT recommended for children, particularly infants”

  1. 衣皇后
    5月 31, 2017 at 3:30 下午 #


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    6月 2, 2017 at 3:16 下午 #


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      7月 31, 2017 at 10:00 上午 #

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  4. 直销
    6月 13, 2017 at 9:34 下午 #


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