Make every beverage count

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Highlights
  • Keep your Preschooler that is 2 years and older hydrated, but remember that too many liquids may fill him up.
  • Beverages should only include milk, 100% juice and water.

Holding a cup on his own is big progress. Your child’s motor skills and coordination are still improving, but drinking from an open cup provides a sense of independence for your Preschooler.

The fluids in his cup are just as important as the food in his diet, and should be counted toward his daily nutritional goals.

Drink responsibly

Beverages are important for keeping your child hydrated, but too much fluid can make him too full to eat nutritious foods. Drink choices should include milk, 100% juice, water, or juice-and-water blends without added sweeteners.

  • Milk has Calcium and Vitamin D to help build strong teeth. Most children 2 years and older should switch to low-fat milk. (4) Limit milk to 2 to 3 cups per day.
  • If you’re serving 100% fruit juice, limit the amount to 4 fl. oz. (½ cup) per day — the equivalent of 1 fruit serving. The American Academy of Pediatrics encourages that the remaining fruit servings come from whole, peeled fruits cut into bite-sized pieces.
  • The remaining fluid for the day should be water. 
  • Do not give soft drinks, tea, coffee, sports drinks or other sweetened drinks to your child. 
  • Offer beverages when he is seated. Your child shouldn’t walk around while drinking or go to bed with a beverage. Constantly having liquid in his mouth isn’t good for developing teeth.

Stick to water in between meals, and offer plain, low-fat milk, 100% juice or a water-and-juice blend at mealtime.

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