What Should Your Toddler Drink? Does it Matter?

What is the best drink with meals for kids?  Well, while you are thinking about that, willinhighchairhere’s another thought. Did you know that the habits you develop are like glue, (rubber cement or… super glue…for example)? Healthy habits can bond healthy activities to daily patterns. An example can be the healthy habit of brushing teeth; doing it at the same time daily, means bonding the habit of brushing to the daily routine, so that you are more likely to do it consistently.

Healthy habits and routines can help kids to know what to expect. When something becomes a habit, we don’t have to think about it as much. So, now consider what habits you and your kids have developed for drinking at mealtime.

An interesting study published in JAMA Pediatrics looked at what kids in New York City were drinking at school for lunch.  They found that most kids were drinking everything else but water, partly because the water wasn’t as available. So, they placed water dispensers in the school cafeterias. They felt that simple change decreased the calorie intake enough to help contribute to a decrease in weight for these kids. Yes, just drinking water instead of anything else for lunch!

So, getting back to the habit thing; many of my little friends have gotten in the habit of drinking milk or juice with every meal. So, maybe start the habit of water at most meals and use the milk at snacks and maybe only at a few meals. Keep the sugared drinks for special occasions, maybe only a few times a month…and that can include the juices and sugared tea.  Habits can make life so much more productive and enjoyable, but it is important to think about what habits we are forming in the first years so that they stick like glue!

Only a few healthy habits should be of the super glue variety…like, giving that kid a hug.

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