A couple of scientists issue new guidelines related to nutritional drinks for children. According to them, babies should be allowed to drink only breast milk or formula in the first years of life, the panel said. They advised to add water to the diet at six months and gave a specific diet chart as to how infants should switch to cow’s milk at 12 months. For the first five years, children should drink mostly milk and water, according to the guidelines. Confused? Their findings suggest that in order to be risk free of obesity and diabetes when they grow up, health cautious measures should be taken at early life.

KEY TAKEAWAYS:

  • Scientists issued new guidelines related to nutritional drinks for children. According to them, babies should be allowed to drink only breast milk or formula in the first years of life.
  • They advised to add water to the diet at six months and gave a specific diet chart as to how infants should switch to cow’s milk at 12 months.
  • But dietitians argue that all micro nutrients and vitamins which we get from other sources like vegetables, fruits and dairy are very important for the growing age.
  • As the child grows his/her nutritional requirements do vary and rises which cannot be reached or fulfilled by water and milk only.

According to the scientists, parents should leave out sugar or other sweeteners from their children’s (five or under) diets. They also said that low-calorie or artificially sweetened beverages, chocolate milk or other flavored milk, caffeinated drinks and toddler formulas should be avoided. On the other hand, plant-based beverages, like almond, rice or oat milk should be avoided too.

“Close to half of all 2- to 5-year-olds in the U.S. drink sugary drinks every day, which we know increases their risk of obesity, diabetes and other health problems,”

“Close to half of all 2- to 5-year-olds in the U.S. drink sugary drinks every day, which we know increases their risk of obesity, diabetes and other health problems,” said Megan Lott, deputy director of Healthy Eating Research.

“These recommendations simplify everything for parents — water, milk and limited amounts of 100 percent fruit juice,” she added.

SheThePeople.TV asked nutritionists and dietitians for a better clarification on the subject.

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What experts say

​“This is not a good practice as the basic needs of the child cannot totally depend on only milk and water,” says Dietitian Kanika Arora. “All micro nutrients and vitamins which we get from other sources like vegetables, fruits and dairy are very important for the growing age. Pulses again play an important role as good sources of protein and are equally important,” she added.

​Pune-based Dietitian ​Dt Mansi Jarare Sathe responded saying, “Children should be only breastfed till 0-6 months. After that home based supplementary food needs to be started along with breast feeding. As the child grows his/her nutritional requirements do vary and rises which cannot be reached or fulfilled by water and milk only. But those do not provide a balanced diet to the children.”

“Their diet lacks in many essential vitamins, minerals and major nutrients if they are kept only and only on water and milk for the first five years of their life. As the child grows his or her intake of milk can be increased but not totally replaced by milk.”

Talking further about a child’s needs for vitamins, she added, “Their diet lacks in many essential vitamins, minerals and major nutrients if they are kept only and only on water and milk for the first five years of their life. As the child grows his or her intake of milk can be increased but not totally replaced by milk. Water also plays a very important role, now days it is considered to be the important Nutrient in diet. Water intake should be adequate.”

This guidelines were produced by Healthy Eating Research, a nutrition advocacy group, and funded by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. “When we talk about empty calories that are consumed through beverages and the number of calories people get from sugar-sweetened drinks, we’re not just talking about soda,” said Dr Richard Besser, president and chief executive of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. “Juice is another source of calories that nutritionally aren’t terrific.”

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