Why is fruit juice so bad for your baby?

For children over 1 year old pediatricians strongly recommend whole fruit instead of juice because it contains fiber which slows the absorption of sugar and fills you up the way juice doesn't

Pediatricians say kids should avoid drinking fruit juice until they're at least a year old. "The fruit has fiber and the vitamins", said Todd Wolynn, president of Kids Plus Pediatrics, when reviewing the new policy. New advice from pediatricians explains why.

Children should be encouraged to eat whole fruits and be educated about the benefits of the fruit as compared with juice, which lacks dietary fiber and may contribute to excessive weight gain, it added.

But now, experts are saying what doctors have recommended in the past could be detrimental to children's health.

Babies in this age group start eating solid foods, and fruit - often mashed or pureed - should become part of their diet.

According to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, a product must be 100% fruit juice in order to be labeled as fruit juice, and juices that are reconstituted from concentrate must be labeled accordingly.

Children and teens are the top consumers of juice and juice drinks in the US, according to the academy.

The Academy supports policies that seek to reduce fruit juice consumption and promote fresh fruit. It balances the role of a small amount of 100% fruit juice in meeting these intake goals while limiting the exposure to juice and emphasizing the key roles of water and milk in a healthy diet. "But that doesn't mean that apple juice doesn't provide vitamin C, because it's usually fortified". (Children this age need about 1 cup total of fruit per day, so the rest of the fruit should be whole fruit). But that they are "absolutely unnecessary" for children younger than 1.

Juice has limited nutritional benefit in the pediatric diet.

Juice should not be introduced to infants before 1 year unless clinically indicated. Seven through 18-year-olds should be limited to 8 ounces of 100% juice daily. (The AAP discourages giving kids unpasteurized juice which can contain pathogens).

Ms. Montgomery said milk and water should be the primary beverages even for older children.

Some studies have found an association between heavy juice consumption - in excess of 12 ounces per day - and obesity. "We have to take a step back and realize that there are harmful consequences to children consuming large amounts of juice". Previously in 2001, the AAP advised parents to wait until a child reached at least six months old to give them juice, but has since chose to bump up the age due to growing health concerns in younger kids. Steven Abrams, one of the authors of the report.

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