If you think water may not be enough for your child but you don’t want them to drink artificial sweeteners and other additives, try making your own drinkable beverage!
When it comes to kids and hydration, there are literally hundreds of options to look through. What should you give your children when they play sports or are out all day? For some reason, the neon colored sports drinks somehow made it into the healthy category because we see healthy looking athletes drinking them and doing amazing things.
Are Sports Drinks Better Than Water?
The truth is that the average young athlete can and should get all of the necessary nutrients and moisture by eating healthy foods and drinking plenty of water before, during, and after a workout. Children should take water breaks during sports games and when playing outdoors for long periods of time.
There are times when a drinking beverage with electrolytes and carbohydrates can benefit your child. If your child participates in prolonged strenuous activities like long distance running or high intensity activities like soccer or basketball, you should consider more than just water.
What do sports drinks contain?
They contain electrolytes such as sodium and potassium, which the body loses through sweat. These are needed to keep the fluid level in balance for the muscles to function properly. However, sports drinks are not required for the casual athlete and should not be consumed regularly. Typical sports drinks often contain artificial sweeteners and other ingredients that your child may not want your child to consume. These are becoming increasingly popular with middle and high school students looking for a competitive edge. Some of these drinks are marked as unsuitable for children. Some are specifically marketed to children who claim they increase energy and athletic performance.
Should Children Drink Sports Drinks?
Most energy drinks contain a large dose of sugar and caffeine. Both of these can have significant negative effects on children, including weight gain, ability to concentrate, headaches, nervousness, and insomnia. Energy drinks pose a real health risk to children and adolescents and should be avoided.
Children who play sports should learn that hard work and practice can improve their game – values that serve them well both on and off the field. These come in a variety of flavors and various vitamin and mineral additives. They may also contain artificial sweeteners and herbal ingredients that have not been studied in children. Vitamin water seems like a quick way to fill nutritional gaps in your child’s diet, but these nutrients can come from a healthy meal or snack. The best place for children to get nutrients on a daily basis is with balanced meals. If you are concerned that your child is not getting enough, speak to your doctor who may recommend a daily multivitamin for children.
How to Make a Natural Sports Drink
For those of you who feel that water might not be quite enough for your child but don’t want them to drink artificial sweeteners and other additives, try making your own drinkable beverage!
There are some nutrients you might want to include when trying to replenish your supplies after strenuous, prolonged exercise.
Carbohydrates for energy Electrolytes: potassium, sodium and magnesium
Coconut water is a great natural source of electrolytes. It’s low in calories, making it a great natural drink in itself. Coconut water has a very distinctive and unique taste that some children may not like. Personally, I love the taste and drink it straight from the bottle. For our drink we added 100% juice to improve the taste and added some carbohydrates for energy.
This natural drink recipe is as simple as pouring your ingredients into a blender and mixing for a minute! This recipe makes about 1 liter of drink. If you feel that you need some sweetness, raw honey is a great choice for this drink. Honey is mostly made up of glucose and fructose, and studies have shown it to be a great source of carbohydrates for competitive athletes.
I would love your feedback! If you are making this recipe for a natural drinkable drink for kids, do you leave a comment and a star rating below? Your feedback will be very helpful to SHK parents and other readers who are considering creating the recipe. Many Thanks!
3 cups Coconut water1 Cup Apple juice1 Cup ice1/8 teaspoon sea-salt1 tablespoon honey
1/4 medium lime1/4 medium orange
Put all ingredients in a powerful blender and blend for 1 minute.
Fill into containers and enjoy immediately or store in the refrigerator for later. Stays in the refrigerator for 1 week.
Optional: add a pinch of lime and fresh orange!
Calories: 86kcal | Carbohydrates: 20thG | Protein: 2G | Sodium: 265mg | Fiber: 3G | Sugar: fifteenG