Not every food that sounds healthy for a child is as good as it appears. By Carolyn Williams, M.Ed., R.D.
Yes, juice is a good source of vitamins and minerals, but the reality is that juice is too often a source of extra calories in a child’s diet. In fact, high intake of juice and juice drinks is thought to be one of the contributing factors to the obesity epidemic in kids. The American Academy of Pediatrics has put limits on the amount of juice that kids should have per day: just ½ to ¾ cup for those age 1 to 6 years and 1 to 1-½ cups for those age 7 to 18 years. Juice isn’t off the table; it should just be limited. It’s better for them to get their fruit servings from eating whole fruit, which provides more fiber, vitamins, and minerals, rather than from drinking it.