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Sweetened fruit drinks contain ADDED SUGAR. They are NOT 100% juice.

Water or unflavored milk is the healthiest choice.

Health experts recommend children drink NO sweetened fruit drinks.

The added sugar in them can lead to:

  • Tooth Decay
  • Weight Gain
  • Diabetes

The Beverage Industry uses pictures of fruit and words like juice, natural, and 100% Vitamin C to mislead parents into thinking they are healthy. They also place their products at children’s eye level in grocery and convenience stores. These marketing tactics are meant to tempt parents into buying sweetened fruit drinks for their children.

Recommendations from the Experts

Medical experts agree that sweetened fruit drinks and other sugary beverages are NOT recommended for children.1,2, 3, 4

  • The drinks parents and caregivers choose for their children can have a lasting impact.
    • Beverages make up a large portion of a child’s calorie and nutrition intake.
    • Consuming sweetened fruit drinks can lead to early weight gain and contribute to a lifetime of diet-related diseases, including diabetes.1,2,3
  • Pediatricians recommend children drink plain water before, during, and after physical activity.
    • Sports drinks are generally unnecessary for children engaged in routine or play-based physical activity.3

Source: Rethink Your Drink: Amount of Sugar and Calories in Common Drinks, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention https://www.cdc.gov/healthyweight/healthy_eating/drinks.html

Spot the Added Sugars

The Beverage Industry tries to hide the sugar in their products but here’s how you can find them.

Added sugars in products  may be hiding under different names. Check the ingredient list for these common sugars:

– Cane juice
– Glucose
– Molasses
– Corn syrup
– High Fructose Corn Syrup
– Raw Sugar
– Dextrose
– Honey
– Sugar
– Fructose
– Malt Syrup
– Sucrose
– Fruit Juice Concentrates
– Maple Syrup and Syrup
– Sugar Cane
– Fruit Nectars (such as agave nectar)

Common sugary beverages include:

  • Fruit drinks and fruit-flavored drinks (fruit punch, juice drinks, lemonade)
  • Soda and soft drinks
  • Sports drinks and energy drinks
  • Sweetened flavored waters
  • Sweetened coffee or tea beverages

Spread the Word







Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)

Food and Drug Administration (FDA)

Hawaii Department of Health


World Health Organization (WHO)


  1. Lott M, Callahan E, Welker Duffy E, Story M, Daniels S. Healthy Beverage Consumption in Early Childhood:Recommendations from Key National Health and Nutrition Organizations. Consensus Statement. Durham, NC: Healthy Eating Research, 2019.(http://healthyeatingresearch.org)
  2. Healthy Eating research (HER) is a national program of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RJWJF) committed to building a Culture of Health through identifying effective strategies to improve children’s nutrition and prevent childhood obesity. Focus Area: Beverages. (https://healthyeatingresearch.org/focus-areas/beverages/)
  3. Energy and Sports Drinks in Children and Adolescents. Catherine M Pound, Becky Blair, and Canadian Pediatric Society, Nutrition and Gastroenterology Committee, Ottawa, Ontario. Pediatric Child Health. 2017 Oct; 22(7): 406–410. Published online 2017 Oct 6. do: 10.1093/pch/pxx132. PMCID: PMC5823002 / PMID: 29491725. (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5823002/)
  4. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Division of Nutrition, Physical Activity, and Obesity. National Center for Chronis Disease Prevention and Health promotion. Rethink Your Drink: Amount Of Sugar And Calories in Common Drinks, and Other Names For Added Sugars. 2022 June.(https://www.cdc.gov/healthyweight/healthy_eating/drinks.html)