Juice for babies can be controversial.
We have spoken to parents, doctors, and dentists and heard both sides of the argument.
This article will discuss whether the juice is safe to drink for babies, what type of juice is best when juice should be introduced, and how to go about it. We will also discuss the things to avoid when giving juice to your baby.
Table of Contents:
- When can a baby have juice?
- Tips to Introduce Juice
- What Should You Watch Out For?
What is the best way to give juice to a baby?
Your baby should only consume breast milk and formula for up to 6 months. Your baby should not be given juice, water, or any solid food if they are less than six months.
The AAP suggests that children younger than 12 months should avoid all juice.
This is due to the fact that formula and breast milk provide all the nutrients and vitamins babies need. Your baby’s digestive system takes time to develop. You can reduce your baby’s obesity risk by avoiding solid foods and drinks early. Breastfed babies are more immune than those who are not breastfed.
You should wait six months to one year before you introduce juice to your baby. You risk your baby becoming deprived of vitamins and nutrients from solid food if you introduce juice to their diet before they are able to digest it.
Remember that liquids such as juice and water can be very filling for babies, but they don’t provide the vital nutrients they need to grow. The risk of anemia, failure to thrive, and malnutrition increases if they don’t get enough nutrition. These conditions can lead to serious health and developmental problems.
How to introduce juice
Your baby is now old enough to drink juice. You’ve introduced juice to your baby throughout the day, and you are certain that they get enough vitamins and nutrients. We are so happy for you!
Before you pour some orange juice into a cup and start drinking, be sure to review the following points. We guarantee your baby’s health and well-being will be better for it.
1. Talk to your doctor.
To make an informed decision about when juice should be introduced, it’s always a good idea for you to consult your doctor.
They may have information about your family history or the medical history of your baby that could cause them to want you to wait a little longer.
2. It’s just like food!
You should only try one juice at once, just as you would introduce one food to the table at a given time. Start small with one vegetable and fruit juice, then move on to more complex combinations.
According to new recommendations, it is no longer necessary that you wait for two to three days before you try another food. However, it is easier to recognize adverse reactions (3).
3. Treat Juices and Foods separately.
Grape juice and grape juice are two different things. The same applies to tomatoes and tomato juice.
You should treat them separately when you introduce them to your baby. You can, for example, try grapes today and then introduce grape juice tomorrow. This extra step is to ensure you are able to identify any allergies your baby may have.
4. Offer juice only with meals
Juice can be a filling for babies, which makes it less likely that they will eat healthy foods.
They will be less likely to drink it and get fuller from it if it is only served at meals. They will instead get all the vitamins and nutrients they need from the food they eat.
5. Use a cup instead of a bottle to get juice.
Liquids from will stay on baby’s teeth for longer than liquids from or (4). The reason dentists recommend that you avoid putting your child to sleep with a bottle of liquid is that sugars in the liquid can cause tooth decay.
Make sure you don’t give your baby juice if you plan to give it in a bottle. Juice can cause enamel to break down faster than sugar in milk.
6. Limit the amount
Your baby should be given only 2 to 4 ounces (5). Juice can make your baby feel stuffed and can lead to obesity. Juice should be added to the child’s diet as an addition and not as a replacement for their regular food.
7. Do not forget to dilute.
Because juice has both sugar and acidity, diluting it is crucial. Drs and dentists recommend diluting juice with water to prevent tooth decay and stomach problems.
Comparison of store-bought and homemade products
It’s always better to make your baby’s food at home. It’s full of nutrients and vitamins, I know. It’s more complicated than that.
Juice made from fresh fruits and vegetables can provide vitamins and nutrients but should not touch the lips of your baby. You might be asking why? Raw produce contains a lot of bacteria, along with vitamins and nutrients.
Juice that has not been properly pasteurized, which is difficult to do at home, can pose a danger to your baby.
Pasteurization refers to heating a liquid at a particular temperature for a specified time. Unpasteurized juice may contain more bacteria than pasteurized juice, including E.coli, Cryptosporidium, and Salmonella.
It has been proven that these bacteria can cause symptoms like:
- Bloody stool.
- Weight loss.
- A lack of appetite.
Although adults and older children can generally handle bacteria found in juices from raw fruits, babies with small stomachs will find it more difficult. Your baby can become ill from any of these symptoms. These bacteria can lead to severe complications such as seizures and kidney failure.
You can’t guarantee that your baby’s juice is properly pasteurized at home, so it’s better to buy juice from the grocery store instead. Choose 100% vegetable or fruit juice without any added sugars or additives.
To kill as many bacteria as possible, make your baby’s juice from fruits and vegetables that you have boiled or steamed.
These same problems can also occur when you feed your baby raw vegetables and fruits. Many doctors recommend that you cook all fruits until your baby turns 8 months.
What should I be looking out for?
While we hope that your baby enjoys the juices without any problems, sometimes things do happen.
These are signs to watch out for when you introduce juice to your baby:
1. Appetite loss
Juice can make babies feel full, but it won’t give them the nutrients that they need to thrive and grow. Juice can make your baby feel full and cause them to reject the breast milk, formula, and other food that they need to thrive.
The excess sugar can cause stomach problems for babies if it isn’t diluted properly. Diarrhea is one of the side effects of too strong juice.
Although it can be beneficial to make your baby poo in certain cases, such as when doctors recommend pear or prune juice for a baby who is constipated. However, diarrhea can lead to dehydration.
3. Tooth decay
In this article, we mentioned that fruit juice is high in sugar and acids. Both of these are bad for a baby’s teeth. Even if your baby drinks from a sippy cup, it can still get on their teeth, causing tooth decay.
This can lead to severe pain and require extensive treatment, such as the removal of your baby’s tooth.
4. Gas and Stomach Pains
Babies have a young digestive system that makes it more difficult for them to break down sugars. Your baby might experience stomach pains and gas from undiluted juice or high fructose corn syrup.
Your baby can feel pain or discomfort from any of these issues. It is best to stop giving your baby juice if your baby begins to feel any of these symptoms.
This step is crucial as it can lead to serious health problems, such as anemia, malnutrition, and failure to thrive.