I’ve always been a lover of juices. Orange juice has long been my favorite, and I’m a huge fan of grape juice, apple juice, pineapple juice, etc. When I was a kid I’d guzzle the stuff by the large glassful, and as a teenager and adult I never thought it was “bad”. I knew it was a bad idea to drink soda, or “fruit drink”, which is fake juice, but I did not think that 100% natural fruit juice could be bad.
It turns out I was wrong. Not because fruit juice is bad, but because drinking too much of it is bad. Even though the sugar in fruit juice is “natural”, it’s still sugar. Too much sugar leads to obesity in children.
I’d like to offer you a few simple suggestions to reduce the amount of juice that your kids drink.
- Keep lots of fresh fruit in the house, and eat fruit instead of drinking juice. You’ll get more of the natural ingredients from the fruit and less total sugar. An orange is refreshing. A glass of orange juice is made from several oranges! Less is more here.
- When your kids absolutely insist on juice and you can’t seem to talk them down, dilute it with water. We often dilute our kids’ juice so it’s a 50/50 blend of water and juice.
- Try this amazing and delicious replacement for juice. I made this one day for myself and absolutely loved it, so I wanted to share. Take a large glass and drop in a few ice cubes. Then add orange juice so the glass is 1/4 full. Now, squeeze in a good teaspoon of lemon juice. This jazzes up the flavor a bit. Finally, fill up the remaining space (3/4 of the glass) with water. Stir and enjoy. Tell your kids you are making them a special treat. You’ll be keeping the sugar away, and they will love it.
I’m not telling you that fruit juice is bad. Instead, I’m simply saying too much of it is unhealthy. We limit our kids to one glass of juice per day now, and they can eat an unlimited amount of fruit, drink as much water as they want, and I’ll offer up my own recipe of highly diluted juice (shared above).
That’s all I wanted to say for now. Reducing sugar consumption is an important part of your family’s health. Take it seriously.
Enjoy your children!