Zero – Sugary Drinks
What Are You Drinking?
Stop choosing sugary drinks such as soda, fruit drinks and punch, sweetened iced tea, sports drinks, and energy drinks. These sweetened beverages contain a lot of added sugar, including sugar cane, corn syrup, sucrose, fructose, honey and more. Too much added sugar leads to health problems like dental cavities, unwanted weight gain, and metabolic dysfunction. Instead, get your family to drink more water and low-fat milk. Low-fat milk is nutritious and helps kids build strong teeth and bones. Water is the best drink!
- Drink more water throughout the day.
- Be a role model for your kids by drinking unsweetened beverages.
- Serve water or low-fat milk at meals. Milk contains essential nutrients like calcium, potassium, phosphorus, protein, vitamin A, vitamin D, vitamin B12, riboflavin, and niacin, which are all important for healthy body functions.
- Give everyone in your family a water bottle to take to school or work and refill it often.
- Keep sweetened beverages out of the house. If it’s around, your family will drink it.
- Water is the best choice before, during and after physical activity. Save sports drinks for long periods of high-intensity activity.
- Add fresh lemon, lime, or orange wedges to your water for some natural flavor.
- Children ages 9 and up should drink 7-10 cups of water each day. Children ages 4-8 should drink 4-5 cups of water and kids under 3 years should drink 2-3 cups every day.
Juice and Fruit-Flavored Drinks
Fruit drinks such as orangeades, lemonade and fruit punch are not healthy choices. These drinks may contain some real fruit juice but most have lots of added sugars and chemicals such as artificial flavorings and colors. Drink only 100% real fruit juices, but be sure to read the label. A small amount of 100% fruit juice (about a half-cup) is okay for most children on a daily basis. All juice drinks contain high amounts of sugar and calories and should be limited. As a juice alternative, think about adding pieces of fresh fruit to your water for a natural flavor.
One can of soda has about 150 calories and 40 grams of sugar. That’s equal to about 10 packets of sugar. High consumption of soda can lead to weight gain and other health problems. Stick to water!