We all know that New England is THE BEST place for fall apple picking! Your local farm or orchard will bring your family much joy with juicy, right-off-the-tree apples. Where else can you go on an adventure where the treat is fruit and the kids rejoice?
But did you know that apples account for 18.9% of fruit intake among youth aged 2 to 19 years? In a study published by the American Academy of Pediatrics, in October of 2015 titled Fruit Consumption by Youth in the United States, it was also concluded that kids are also meeting their daily recommended serving of whole fruit (1 to 2 cups), consuming about 1.25 cups a day (53% of their total fruit intake).
While it’s encouraging that children are consuming whole fruit, the same study, which analyzed data from 3,219 youth, also concluded that more than a third of kids’ total fruit intake comes from fruit juices, which are high in sugar, low in fiber, and damaging to the teeth.
Like most parents, you probably ask yourself, “How much juice should my kids drink every day?” Whole fruits and vegetable are the best choice for a healthy mouth and body, but use the following tips when choosing to serve fruit juices to protect your children’s’ teeth, and make sure to get them to their pediatric dentist for regular cleanings.
- Dilute it half and half with water, and serve no more than 4 to 6 oz a day.
- Serve juice with meals and snacks to cut down on tooth enamel wear and tear, and limit on-the-go sippy use to just water.
- Swap the sippy for a cup with a straw. Instead of funneling fluids to pool in the mouth, a straw sends them on a quicker path to being swallowed, detouring past the teeth protecting them.