March 18, 2022
How Much Water Should Kids Drink?
Water is super important for our bodies. And just like us, our kiddos need the same love and hydration. Keep their bodies growing strong by keeping them fueled with an appropriate amount of water and nutrients every day.
Water is important for everything, especially in growing children. It keeps digestion running smoothly, keeps our internal body temperature regulated and helps our muscles and joints function properly.
OK, water is important. Got it. Now… how much though?
Water is always the best choice when it comes to making sure your child stays hydrated.
It ensures their bodies are prepared for physical activity and supports healthy functions without all the unnecessary stuff packed into other beverages.
The amount of water needed varies by age. Children don’t need quite as much water as adults, but the concept is still the same. They should drink water throughout the day – with meals and sipping when thirsty. (If you want a refresher on how much water you should be drinking every day, check out our blog on water for weight loss!)
The Institute of Medicine (a division of the National Academy of Sciences) recommends total water intake in cups based on kids ages four to 18 in the table below.
Children can be introduced to water when they are around six months old, four to eight ounces per day. This recommended amount gradually increases through three years of age up to four cups of water per day.
While this may seem like a lot, keep in mind this is for total water intake, which also includes water content from fruits and vegetables. So don’t forget to eat your water, too! A well-rounded diet with nutritious foods will help keep your kids hydrated and feeling great. So always eat the rainbow!
And if your kids are active, they will need a little more. Give them another cup or two after activity and make sure they continue taking a refreshing sip here and there while they are playing.
Can kids drink anything besides water?
Aside from *maybe* milk, water is always your best option for the kiddos.
Energy drinks aren’t ideal for children because of the caffeine content. Sports drinks are OK if kids are highly active and need a boost in electrolytes to replenish fluids lost during exercise.
Juice that is 100% fruit juice is fine in small quantities. But be careful to avoid commercially made fruit drinks with added sugar and no nutritional value. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends only four ounces of fruit juice each day for toddlers between one year and three years old.
A good way to help keep your little ones hydrated and give them the fruity taste they may be craving is to water down fruit juices and sports drinks.
5 Tips To Get Your Kids To Drink More Water
If your child seems put off by the taste of plain water, try a few ways to get them drinking more and more!
1.) Jazz it up! Enhance the flavor with fruity mixes made from simple, clean and non-GMO ingredients. True Lemon’s Kid Drink Mixes are proven to be flavors kids love and contain no artificial sweeteners, flavors or preservatives. (Bonus: They also contain vitamins A, C and E!)
2.) Make it fun! Serve water in cute cups with playful straws. Let your kid choose the cup they like and let them fill it. Keep them engaged by giving them a sense of responsibility and independence.
3.) Add fruit! Use frozen fruit in place of ice cubes. It’s a nice added touch and makes for a little treat when they finish drinking their water.
4.) Use small cups or water bottles. Tiny hands want tiny things. Give kids smaller bottles or cups of water to make it easier to hold and encourage them to keep drinking.
5.) Be a role model! Teach your kids by being the example. Set a healthy standard by drinking water with them and encouraging healthy drinks.