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Children's Health

Orange Juice



Is it true that giving some orange juice to a child in the afternoon is a bad idea? If yes, why?


In general, ALL juices are totally unnecessary and fall into the junk food category. They are beverages loaded with sugar, either natural or refined, and essentially "empty calories". Fruit juices are one of the factors implicated in the present childhood obesity epidemic in the United States.

Plain water should be the primary beverage of children followed by milk (16-24 oz/day MAX). So morning, noon, or night, water should be the "go to" beverage for children and sugar drinks should be limited to celebrations and special occasions.

Hagan, J.F., Shaw, J.S., & Duncan, P.M. (Eds.). (2008). Bright Futures: Guidelines for health supervision of infants, children and adolescents. Arlington, VA: National Center for Education in Maternal and Child Health. IBSN-13: 978-1-58110-223-9

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Response by:

Sarah Sauntry, RN, MS, CPNP-PC
Assistant Professor of Clinical Nursing
College of Nursing
University of Cincinnati