MONDAY, May 22, 2017 (HealthDay News) — Fruit juice should be limited for toddlers and older children, and infants shouldn’t have any at all before their first birthday, according to new guidelines from the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) published online May 22 in Pediatrics.
The AAP recommends that human milk or infant formula be the only nutrient fed to infants until approximately 6 months of age. It is optimal to completely avoid the use of juice in infants before 1 year of age, unless clinically indicated.
For older children, the AAP suggests limits on juice: 4 ounces a day at most for toddlers ages 1 to 3; no more than 6 ounces for 4- to 6-year-olds; and no more than 8 ounces a day for older children and teens. It is also recommended that toddlers not be given juice from bottles or easily transportable covered cups.
“Although juice consumption has some benefits, it also has potential detrimental effects. High sugar content in juice contributes to increased calorie consumption and the risk of dental caries,” write the authors of the guidelines. “In addition, the lack of protein and fiber in juice can predispose to inappropriate weight gain (too much or too little). Pediatricians need to be knowledgeable about juice to inform parents and patients on its appropriate uses.”
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