43 answers

Half Juice... Half Water

My DS is four, ever since he started drinking juice I have cut it half jucie half water.
Now that he is getting older and having play dates I have had a couple of moms tell me that when they tried to give him
juice and they didnt add water he wouldnt drink it. He thinks that the way we give it to him is the only way you are
susposed to have juice. I dont see a problem with it, and I started doing it because a couple of friend who's kids were
older than mine had so many cavities before they hit kindergarden and their dentists had suggested it to them.
So I guess my question would be does anyone else do this or used to do this?.. and if so when did you start giving just juice?

What can I do next?

So What Happened?™

Thanks for al the responses. He does drink just water and he loves milk, so I am probably
just going to have a talk with him to just ask for water when he is over playing at someone elses house.

Featured Answers

I have always done water mixed in with juice. I even do it for myself at times because it's lower in calories! Now there have been times when I give my kids straight juice, but usually I water it down (probably not 50/50 - maybe 70/30). My kids are 3 and 1. My hubby never waters the juice down so they'll drink it my way or his way, they do not seem to mind! I would ask you children's friends parents to water it down or maybe just give him water or milk. Or you could send a cup along with him!

1 mom found this helpful

I've done it with both of my kids. oldest 9 younger 19months. The closest thing that my youngest has had to full juice is the gerber or toddler juice boxes that he gets once in a blue moon. Otherwise we do milk or water. With my older son luckily he really likes milk and doesn't drink juice often but I've also incorporated smoothies every now and then in the morning with milk and fresh fruit. Gives options but still healthy. Almost forgot to add. Neither has had a cavity. Especially my 9 yr old who has yet to have a cavity...... knock on wood.

1 mom found this helpful

I think most peds will tell you that kids don't even need juice at all. It is typically full of sugar, and has basically little to no nutritive value, whatsoever. That said, I did give my son (4 1/2) juice, but always cut it at least 50-50 with water, usually more. He will drink full strength juice if it's given to him, but he has no problem with it diluted with water. Basically, I always felt like I was just flavoring his water... not even making it half juice, more like 1/3 juice, 2/3 water...

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I did it with my kids, too. Just figured they didn't need that much sugar. But sometimes they would get it full strength. They never noticed the difference or at least never said anything. I figure every little bit helps but I never stressed over whether they got it full strength. They never complained either way. If he prefers it with a little water, then teach him to politely ask for a little water in his juice when he is at friends' houses. Or teach him to say "just some water, please."
Pretty soon he will be out of the house more and more (and you will lose more and more control over those healthy choices) so I wouldn't be too concerned.
My kids never had white bread until they started going over to their friends' houses and then they got to the point where that was the only thing they would eat. Grrrrr. The schools aren't that much help, either-they still serve white bread!
Bottom line-you start giving him full strength juice when that is the only way he'll drink it-or when you quit giving him juice, altogether! (With kids ages 18, 15, and 12 at our house-only my son will drink juice and only orange juice at that!). I promise-once the soda monster rears it's ugly head, juice will be the least of your concerns!
Good luck.

2 moms found this helpful

We dilute all our juice 1/2 and 1/2 with water - for my husband and myself too. There are SO many empty calories in it and I've found that it's too sweet straight up now.

2 moms found this helpful

I don't even do half. I make a glass of water and put in a little tiny splash of juice, and that is for me and my daughter. I didn't even give her juice for the first time until she was almost four. Most of the time we don't even drink juice at our house, we just drink water. My pedi and nutritionist said that juice is worthless because you don't get the benefit of the fiber from the fruit. So we just eat fruit instead:) I only buy juice when we are sick, cause it is comforting when our throats are sore.

2 moms found this helpful

my son doesn't drink juice really. milk or water. he gets juice from other people occasionally and thinks it's a big treat. i don't see any problem with your situation. don't be embarrassed or feel like you're doing things wrong - kids don't need juice. at all. if they are eating a balanced diet there's no need for it. could these moms just not give him water? is half juice/ half water the ONLY thing he will drink? if so then perhaps it's something to work on with him. but refusing full strength juice shouldn't be a bad thing. as long as he says "no thank you" :)

2 moms found this helpful

I think of juice as a sweet treat because it's so full of sugar (yeah, I know it's sugar from fruit, but once it's in your body, it's just sugar) and is not nearly as nutritional as the fruit itself and once kids get in the habit of drinking juice, they drink SO MUCH of it. We started cutting their juice from day one and slowly put in less and less juice. Now my kids' favorite drink is water and the only juice I have in the house is orange juice. For the vitamins and nutrients, they just eat the actual fruit. I'm not saying they don't drink any other juice at all - they do at friends' houses or sometimes when we're out at a restaurant for a special occasion. But it's really not a regular occurrence. I think it's great that you've watered down your son's juice - it's better for him in the long run. Don't let him get used to the intense sweetness of full strength juice, instead cut it back even further so your son starts to prefer water on its own. On playdates, just send him with a water bottle filled with his own "juice" so the other parent doesn't have to go to any trouble.

2 moms found this helpful

I did! I still do whenever I can!
My kids are 5 ( almost 6) 3, and 2. My 5 year old is the hardest because he knows the trick - actually I used to do 1/4 juice and 3/4 water.He has been in preschool for 2 years and now kindergarten and they never dilute! My youngest 2, I almost always do 1/2 and 1/2 still. I actually know for a fact that all 3 of my kids will get diarrhea if they have more that 1 cup of undiluted apple or grape juice. Whenever they go to grandma's house, look out! She laughs about it, the kids don't care they get juice boxes aplenty... I am also a tooth brush warden, they brush then I finish even if I have to hold you in a head lock because you don't want my help, off on a tangent sorry. They don't have cavities.
You have to go with your gut, you do what is right with your kids. You can always send sippy cups or water bottles already filled with what you want them to drink. Don't get pressured now to change if you think it's going well. Our kids don't "need" juice. They just like it!

2 moms found this helpful

yup, we do this too :-) I do it for myself as well. I don't think there is a need to change this habit at all. Just tell your son that not everyone does it that way and if he wants to add water to his juice, that he just needs to speak up... I'm sure any parent would happily oblige to his request.

2 moms found this helpful

i've always cut my kids' juice.my DH saw that the neighbors' kids walked around w/ sippy cups of juice from the time they could toddle and didn't like that i was "depriving" them of juice. he changed his tune when the neighbors' kids both had mouths full of cavities before kinder! my son is 7, my dtr is 2. i still cut their juice. my dtr actually prefers water. son only gets orange or apple juice at breakfast.

1 mom found this helpful

I do that.
Even when we are out or at restaurants... I ask for 50-50 water/juice. ALL the fast food or take out or restaurant places... do NOT have a problem with it... because, all the parents ask for that too. It is never a problem.

My kids, think that is the way juice is too. They find regular juice, too strong... or too sugary. Even they say that.
Its no big deal.

My kids are 4 and 8 years old... and I STILL do 50-50 water/juice... and so do my friends. And when their kids are over at our house... they will even say "put water in my juice...."

Right now, we don't even have any juice in the house. Just water or milk or coffee. Juice... is not a regular item we always buy anyway. Or we squeeze our own.

All the best,
Susan

1 mom found this helpful

I think only one commenter has said this - but if you ask a dentist, they will tell you that halving the juice doesn't prevent damage to the teeth at all. It may cut calories etc, but the sugar that's left in the juice is still enough to do considerable damage. Most dentists will tell you that if you give any kind of juice it should be once a day with food.

1 mom found this helpful

I have been doing it for years...my daughter is 8 and now she drinks regularly. I have several friends that do it also. I would agree completely with the dentist because the juices are way to sugary now. Continue to water your juice, it's not going to hurt anything

1 mom found this helpful

I will admit that my DD isn't much of a milk drinker and therefore we get the calcium fortified O.J. and we water it down 50/50 too. She still drinks probably more of it than many would recommend but it's only in the morning and she doesn't sip on it continuously. We are also really diligent about her brushing her teeth.

1 mom found this helpful

I think you are doing great. They don't need the ton of natural sugar found in 100% juice. The kiddos can get vitamin C straight from the fruit. My son is only allowed one juice per day....and I don't even think it is 50/50 mix. Ours are more like 75% water to 25% juice. I add his liquid vitamin to it (mango-orange flavor) and he views his "juce blend" as an afternoon treat. I don't plan on ever changing the way he drinks this at home. I never allowed him juice elsewhere until very recently. So for example, if he is offered juice at a birthday party that is not diluted, I would let him have it - but that is the rare treat/special occassion way for him to drink it.

1 mom found this helpful

This is copy/pasted from the American Academy of Pediatrics 2007 statement on Juice for children under the "conclusions" section at the end. But basically, kids under age 7 shouldn't have more than 4-6 oz of juice a day, but real fruits and veg's for those food pyramid servings are best. Most parents I know, who do offer juice, cut is as you do.

I do home childcare and NEVER buy juice for my daycare kids. Ever. I know they all get way too much at home. We drink milk or water. Thats it.

Here is the excerpt:

Juice should not be introduced into the diet of infants before 6 months of age.
Infants should not be given juice from bottles or easily transportable covered cups that allow them to consume juice easily throughout the day. Infants should not be given juice at bedtime.
Intake of fruit juice should be limited to 4 to 6 oz/d for children 1 to 6 years old. For children 7 to 18 years old, juice intake should be limited to 8 to 12 oz or 2 servings per day.
Children should be encouraged to eat whole fruits to meet their recommended daily fruit intake.
Infants, children, and adolescents should not consume unpasteurized juice.

1 mom found this helpful

I think most peds will tell you that kids don't even need juice at all. It is typically full of sugar, and has basically little to no nutritive value, whatsoever. That said, I did give my son (4 1/2) juice, but always cut it at least 50-50 with water, usually more. He will drink full strength juice if it's given to him, but he has no problem with it diluted with water. Basically, I always felt like I was just flavoring his water... not even making it half juice, more like 1/3 juice, 2/3 water...

1 mom found this helpful

I've done it with both of my kids. oldest 9 younger 19months. The closest thing that my youngest has had to full juice is the gerber or toddler juice boxes that he gets once in a blue moon. Otherwise we do milk or water. With my older son luckily he really likes milk and doesn't drink juice often but I've also incorporated smoothies every now and then in the morning with milk and fresh fruit. Gives options but still healthy. Almost forgot to add. Neither has had a cavity. Especially my 9 yr old who has yet to have a cavity...... knock on wood.

1 mom found this helpful

It's better your way. Less sugar. Keep it up.

1 mom found this helpful

Lots of moms do this.
Some of them gradually shift the mixture over time
but, as some mothers here said, it's not necessary.
If the hostess mother doesn't want to do this w/your child,
send your child's juice with him.
I dilute orange juice for myself.

1 mom found this helpful

We do 1/3 juice the rest water. Mostly because I don't want our kids to have too much sugar, even natural sugar. They get a couple of watered down drinks a day and the rest of the day is milk with a meal or water. I think that mixing it up helps them learn all sorts of tastes. It's totally ok that your son wouldn't drink the straight juice, maybe if you let your friends know they'll water it down for him. When I was little I refused to drink anything but water or really watered down apple juice (or milk) until after I was 5, it didn't do any harm.

Updated

1 mom found this helpful

I do this too. Although our dentist said it doesn't matter how much of it is juice vs water. She sugar still breeds the same and can have the same effect, cavities.

Just be cautious either way!

1 mom found this helpful

I have always done water mixed in with juice. I even do it for myself at times because it's lower in calories! Now there have been times when I give my kids straight juice, but usually I water it down (probably not 50/50 - maybe 70/30). My kids are 3 and 1. My hubby never waters the juice down so they'll drink it my way or his way, they do not seem to mind! I would ask you children's friends parents to water it down or maybe just give him water or milk. Or you could send a cup along with him!

1 mom found this helpful

I am 32 and still drink juice with half water! There is no need to ever make the switch. My palate is so used to watered down juice that regular juice tastes terrible to me.

1 mom found this helpful

I think my daughter was arround 5 or 6 when she realized that my juice didn't taste the same as grandma's juice boxes (don't get me started on those overpriced wasteful nasty $%**&.....). So then she started having straight juice. I got so used to it mixed, that's the only way I'll drink it now.

1 mom found this helpful

I did this for a long time with my oldest (until he saw that other kids weren't getting water in theirs). My second child wanted the real thing much sooner because of big brother. I say keep giving him the watered down juice. Kids these days get way too much sugar. It is in everything. Even foods we think of as healthy. By watering down his juice, you are not nutritionally depriving him. Juice is not a major food group. Keep up the good work. Maybe he'll drink his juice watered down into adulthood (if you are lucky!). :)

1 mom found this helpful

There are a few brands of diluted juice in juice boxes. Maybe you can send them with him on a play date. Otherwise tell him to ask for his juice how he likes it.

1 mom found this helpful

We've always done 1/4 juice 3/4 water and still do. Our kids are 14, 12, 11, 8 and 18 months. In fact, the older kids now prepare the diluted juice themselves.

Will your son drink water only? Either send his special mixture with him or let the moms know he should only have water if he'll drink it.

1 mom found this helpful

My dd is now 5 and we still dilute her juice 50/50 with water. We only buy 100% apple juice (no added sugars). She also takes a 100% juice, juice box with her for school lunch and that she drinks at full strength. Personally, I still dilute my own juice.

1 mom found this helpful

I hope EVERYONE who lets little ones have juice does this. As for us, we pretty much skipped the "giving juice" altogether. They got milk or water. The juice really has no nutritional value and just fills them up, and as you said.. can contribute to cavity formation. So we just skipped it due to the lack of nutritional value. Neither of our kids drink any juice now. (They are 12 and 9 years)... they just don't care for it. Never have. And I'm GREAT with that!

The ONLY down side, was that all the little preschool parties and birthday parties, where the hostess serves juice boxes or pouches... my kids had to ask for water. My son never had any problems, but my daughter is a little less assertive, and sometimes no one noticed she had never opened her juice and didn't have anything to drink. So I just tried to always be present, or give a "heads up" to whoever was in charge of drinks that she'd prefer just plain water.
I say, if he only likes it cut 50/50, then good for him. Just teach him to proper way to ask for it that way when he is out in the rest of the world. lol

:)

Just to clarify... we never refused to allow our kids to HAVE juice. We just didn't have it in our house... and when eventually they were exposed to it elsewhere, they didn't like it and wouldn't drink it. My son will sometimes drink Applejuice with his school lunch. But that's it. And this is the first year he's done that.. he's in 7th grade.

1 mom found this helpful

I still do it sometimes and my kids are 6 and 8 yrs old. Also, they are only given juice once a day, usually with lunch, milk with brkfst and dinner and the rest of the time they drink water!

1 mom found this helpful

I still do it and my oldest is almost 9 if I give juice but my kids are happy to just drink plain old water or have a glass of milk.

1 mom found this helpful

Even my 6-year-old still prefers it diluted. She didn't like juice as a baby at all. I buy Roaring Waters for parties instead of regular juice boxes. Much less sugar. My 2-year-old LOVES juice, but he is fine with it diluted, so I do that for him too. We try not to give more than the 4-6 oz recommended limit. My daughter didn't get any at all until she was about 4. If your kids are old enough, they could politely ask for juice with a little water in it on playdates in place of full-strength juice. If he were at my house, I'd be happy--it's cheaper to serve a kid less juice and more water! ;) If he's very young, you might even say something about it when you drop him off so the other moms won't waste juice. Because this is healthier than full-strength juice, there's certainly no reason to conform to the crowd.

1 mom found this helpful

My daughter just turned 4 today and I still give her watered down juice all the time. Very rarely do I ever give her straight juice. I say.. do what is right for you and your child. You will save in Dental visits.

Interesting...I think I'm the only one that give my kids straight juice :) My oldest gets it with her snack in the afternoon. My youngest will get a little bit every once in awhile. I think it's all good things in moderation. Don't let them have diluted or undiluted juice more than once a day, make sure they're brushing properly and if they drink juice don't give them a lot of other sugary stuff.

I saw on Dr. Oz the other day that even adults should do this.

I cut my son's juice (3.5 years), and will continue to do so. I allow daycare to give only milk and water. When other kids have juice, he has milk. (He's not the only one, so I am glad he won't feel left out.) I cut mine by some, but probably not quite 50/50.

You have a really good point. As a mom of 4, and a woman who has taken my kids to the dentist many times, I can attest to what you're saying. Its not a bad idea to add water to the juice. I do it for my youngest (who is 1). I typically start giving them regular juice around 3 (no water added). But, I limit how much they are allowed to have.

I think much of this is personal preference. If your child is fine with having the juice mixed with water...keep it up. You're not hurting your child by doing that. Watching out for cavities is a big thing.

Keep this in mind though. All food and drink (except water, obviously) has sugars in it. Some are more highly concentrated though. My dentist told me to be careful not to give bread or raisins before bedtime, as they both are sticky and can cause cavities if not brushed off before bedtime.

So, my thing is, limit your sugars if you can. This is the age where you have some legitimate control over their dietary habits. Help to develop healthy ones. Definitely get your child more used to drinking water. Let the juice be a treat, for a friends house or after playing outside.

I say all of this because I was the mom who gave my kid too much of the sugar laden drinks. I wasn't careful. She had cavities at a young age from this. After watching her cry in the dentist chair (because she needed a cap!) I changed my ways. We are way more careful now. The cavities haven't been around for many years now.

Good luck to you!

I've always done maybe 2tblsp & the rest water or all water. They don't need juice.

I do it. Regular juice is WAY too sweet. I think it's silly to acclimate children to how sweet juice truly is, and to give them lots of other sugar-laden goodies.

I will always cut my girls juice with water. Juice is a treat. It's like candy, truly. My dentist advises no juice. Just milk and lots of water.

I think cutting juice is smart- good for you for doing it. =D

I've typically done straight juice, but most parents I know split it half and half with water.

My mom did this to all of us and at 34,30,26,22 & 16 we still do!

My son is 10 and I still due half juice and half water. I even do that for myself. Straight juice is just too sweet and he doesn't need all that extra sugar. He actually prefers it with some water to cut the sweetness. He will drink regular juice, and of course we get Caprisun for his lunch, but at home he prefers juice with a little water.

We seldom give juice and I cut it with water. DD doesn't really like juice and her pediatrician doesn't encourage it.

We cut juice with water — even for ourselves. I think it's a great way to get kids used to drinking water. I would keep going with it. Less sugar (even if it's all natural) & better for his teeth. Rock on Mom!

My son is almost 4 and he ALWAYS has water mixed with juice. He doesnt know it any other way. I dont know why his friends parents couldnt just give it to him that way? Its not like its difficult or anything!

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