Children require optimum nutrition to support their development and growth. While we can always give them highly nutritious foods, it is equally important that we provide them with juices that are rich in nutrients and not just empty calories. Hopefully, with the 5 best juices for kids to drink in 2017 we’re sharing with you, you can get them started on a much healthier lifestyle that they’ll bring well into adulthood.
Criteria Used in Evaluation of The Best Juice Boxes
Juice boxes and bottles have long been a popular choice for parents to put into their child’s lunch boxes. They are easy and simple to do, allowing for less fuss in the mornings. However, not all juices are made equal. In making this list, we followed a criterion that guided us on how to pick the best juices for your child.
Before you even read anything else, make sure that the fruit juice that you’re looking to buy is pure fruit juice. Those that aren’t are likely to contain added sweeteners and/or sugars that can lead to calorie counts and cavities.
It is not recommended for children under the age of one to have fruit juices. For children, in between one to three years of age, you should limit their fruit juice intake to a maximum 1/2 cup (4 oz.) a day. For children aged between 4 years and 6 years, limit their fruit juice intake to 1/2 cup to 3/4 cup (4 oz. to 6 oz.) per day. For children aged 7 to 18 years of age, limit fruit juices to 1 cup (8 oz.) a day. Regardless of the age, you should not allow your child to sip juice from a juice box for a prolonged period.
For the best interests of your child, you can also try to dilute the juice with water. Also, ensure that fruit juices do not completely overtake water and milk from your child’s diet. Water does not have a substitute and should always be the primary beverage for your child. Children aged 4 to 8 years of age need around 4 to 6 cups of water daily. Children aged 9 and up, need roughly 8 cups daily.
Above all, the most important thing for you to do before purchasing a fruit juice is for you to read the packaging labels correctly and thoroughly. You should never completely emit sugar from your child’s diet, nor should there be an excess amount of it. Some juices can provide your child with healthy vitamins and antioxidants that will ensure smooth running internal systems.
What Determined the Best Juices for Children in Our List
Many of us often choose our drinks based on its flavor. It is very rare that we take the time to look at the nutritional value of these drinks. While some of us would really read the nutritional information in the packaging of drinks, not many understand the meaning and implications of the substances and numbers that are printed on the label. This is especially tricky when it comes to children since they are particularly vulnerable to nutritional deficiencies. As such, our very first criterion in this particular project is the nutritional value of these juices for kids. We wanted to make sure that every time your kids guzzle down these juices, they become healthier with each gulp. We know it’s far-fetched but it’s a step in the right direction.
Closely related to the nutritional value of these drinks is the safety of the other ingredients that may be included in the mix. Some would include artificial colorings, sweeteners, and preservatives. We clearly don’t want any of that for our children. This is why we considered a nutritious juice should also be safe and not contain any chemicals that may negate the benefits provided by its nutrients.
Of course, a juice drink, no matter how nutritious it can be, will fail in its purpose if it tastes awful. Knowing kids, their palates are a bit more choosy compared to ours because of their rather limited experiences related to different flavors and even scents. That’s why we chose products that we are sure kids will love and really enjoy drinking.
To help us determine the top 5, we only included products that have a consumer product rating of not less than 4 stars. We know it’s not really much but it should be sufficient for ensuring we get a product that’s also considered to be great by other consumers.
A Look at the Nutrients that Kids Need in Their Juices
Nutrition is very important for the survival of any organism, humans included. We won’t be here if not for these very small microscopic substances that form the very foundation of our existence. While grownups can derive their nutrition from a variety of sources, children are a different matter simply because they haven’t been exposed yet to a variety of tastes and flavors which can affect their nutrition. There are nutrients that all children must consume as these are considered to be the basic building blocks of their development. Understanding these nutrients for the growing years is essential to our caring for them. Here are some of them.
- Protein – All cells in our body require protein as this macronutrient is the fundamental building block of all things. Without it, cells will not be able to produce daughter cells and tissues will not be formed. That’s why it is always a good idea to get juices or any food item that is rich in this macronutrient to help ensure optimum growth.
- Calcium – Part of growing up is playing. Whether it is running or jumping or hopping or simply walking, we all need sturdy and strong bones to help minimize the effects of compression on these organs. We need a strong skeleton to support the muscles and the other organs of the body. And this is where calcium can be a very particularly great addition to our kids’ drinks. While milk is the best source of this mineral, there are now many juices that have been fortified with calcium.
- Iron – Not your Tony Stark kind of mineral but iron is a very essential mineral necessary for the synthesis of hemoglobin, a molecule that carries oxygen in the blood and brings this to the different cells. It is also the same molecule where carbon dioxide sits in on its way outside the body. All cells require oxygen. Without iron, it would be almost impossible to deliver oxygen to the cells.
- Vitamin A – Kids first learn about their world through their senses. And one of the most important senses is vision. It allows us to see everything around us so that our brains can try to interpret these visual cues. Vitamin A is thus crucial for the optimum development of children’s vision.
- Vitamin C – There are many benefits of Vitamin C. Aside from a boost in the immune system, it’s also important in strengthening the different cells of the body as well as in the establishment of stronger teeth and bones.
These are just some of the many nutrients that kids need to grow healthier and develop more optimally. It is our responsibility to make sure they obtain the right amounts of these nutrients on a daily basis.
The Bottom Line
Juices come in a variety of flavors and formulations. However, if we are to make sure our kids stay healthy while having a go at their favorite drinks, we might as well give then any of these 5 best juices for kids to drink in 2017.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: Why Do the Brands Repeat on This List?
A: Some brands, such as Apple & Eve, are well-known in the juice box industry. Thus, it makes sense that those brands would have a number of products that have been well raved about in the market. Our list strives to include all the best products in the market that have an easy reach.
Q: Where Can I Purchase These From?
A: All the products that are listed above can easily be purchased directly from Amazon. Most of the products price range is listed less on Amazon than it is elsewhere.
Q: Why Are Some of These So Expensive?
A: Some of these are pricier than others, however, some simply have a higher price because of the amount that is being offered. It’s important to check how many bottles/boxes are included in a product listing to avoid overspending or over-ordering.
Q: Where Can I Find the Best Prices?
A: The products on this list can easily be found on amazon.com. However, if you are searching online or in-stores for the best prices, it’s important to just research thoroughly to find those top prices.
Q: Why Do the Links Take Me Straight to Amazon?
A: For consistency purposes, we’ve limited the links to Amazon. This does not mean that they are not available anywhere else though. For simplicity and flow reasons, we have condensed some of the titles – the links help you better see the full names of the products.
Q: Are There More Flavors of Products Than Just the Ones Stated in The Titles of The Products?
A: Yes. For simplicity, straightforwardness and flow reasons, we have omitted the entire list of flavors that each product has in the titles. Most of them, however, do have it listed under their mini-reviews. The best option to find out more information is to click on the links to find a full product listing that is being offered.
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