Toddlers: 24 Months+

when can you start artificial sweeteners?

DD hates drinking liquids.  She never was much of a formula or milk drinker since she was born, always underweight, but Dr never thought twice about it.  But now, she won't drink any milk and only takes a few sips of water/day.  We've started watered down juice mix and maybe she'll drink 2 ounces/day. Then, I mixed the liquid water flavors to her water and she drank a whole cup.  But they all contain the artificial sweeteners.  I just wasn't sure if there was a certain age limit for that. 

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Re: when can you start artificial sweeteners?

  • I have actually given DD a sip of my crystal light before and she went crazy for it, but I'm still hesitant to give it to her, (as I know I shouldn't be drinking them myself), but I do give her ice water w/ fresh squeezed orange or lemon in it and she loves that as well.
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  • Tbd143Tbd143 member
    I don't love artificial sweetners for anyone, no matter what age. Not that I don't drink it, but I have cut way down, and have felt so much better.

    Fruit infused water is a big hit lately. For something different try fresh pineapple or strawberry if the normal lemon or lime don't work.

    I plan to try this with DS if he stops drinking milk or water well. I love it and know plenty of kids who like it too.
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  • It's never to young to give your kids cancer!
  • Another vote for never here.  I try not to intentionally buy anything with artificial sweetener in it.  I do give my kid some juice.  I buy the 100%, no sugar added juice and then water it way down.  He thinks all juice tastes mostly like water. :)  You could add a little chocolate to milk too and see if that will help.  My general theory is that if they get thirsty enough, they'll drink a cup of water.


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  • I'm on the "never" side too. But I'm also all about full fat foods too.

    I also agree with pp that if they get thirsty they will drink.

    I only give the girls water and milk. Flavoured milk is a sometimes treat. DD1 has had watered down juice twice. (I'm not saying this to be all holier than thou, because I do feed the girls all sorts of things that I don't think are a very good choice. It's just fluids is one area that I've been pretty strict on, can't explain why,) 


    Elizabeth 5yrs old Jane 3yrs old

  • Another vote for the fruit flavored water.  We actually keep a big jug of water in our fridge with cut up oranges in it.  It flavors the water so slightly.  You can do this with any fruit you have on hand.
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  • Keep offering water, frequently.  Even if she only takes a sip at a time.  Offer every 10-15 minutes if you have to.  Always keep a water bottle (that she can operate on her own) with you/her.  And offer lots of water-heavy fruits and veggies and other foods (watermelon, soup, etc.)

    I'm also on the "never" front for artificial sweeteners.  They not only have their own chemical issues, but they all change the way the brain operates appetite control, as the sweet taste signals the brain to expect calories, but the body doesn't get any, so it starts to desire more food, even when the food is naturally sweet and does contain calories.

    I'd do watered down juice long before artificial sweeteners.  Try different juices (apple, orange, pineapple, grape, mango, etc.) and try different levels of watering it down.  1/3 juice, 2/3 water tastes extremely different than 2/3 juice, 1/3 water.

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  • LSU628LSU628 member
    What about the Simply beverages? Some of the juices have some sugar, but DD loves the simply orange with tangerine, the Simply Lemonade with Raspberry or Blueberry. Better than some of the other juice choices out there. 
  • Never. 

    Try a juice pouch by "Honest Kids" - it's mostly water.  Nothing artificial - sweetened with only fruit juice. 

    I'd rather give my kids regular soda than artificial sweeteners.

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  • imagefredalina:
    Never as far as I'm concerned. I would try actual fruit, like lemon, and they do sell powdered lemon without additives, or juice or anything but the artificial sweetened and dyed stuff.
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  • Our pedi recommended chocolate syrup in milk to get DD to drink it. Once she started drinking it, we slowly decreased the amount of syrup. You could certainly try this method.
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  • To ditto everyone else, never.

    for some more ideas to increase fluids-what about homemade Popsicles? You could do 1/2 juice to water. This time of year pineapple and watermelon are in season and are good choices for water. 

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  • imagekielpinskim:
    Our pedi recommended chocolate syrup in milk to get DD to drink it. Once she started drinking it, we slowly decreased the amount of syrup. You could certainly try this method.

    I like this concept.  You could try watered down juice-start at half and half and slowly decrease the amount of juice to water.  That's what we do with DD1.

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  • Hey I meant to be sarcastic, sorry if that came out nasty-it's hard to tell online.  So I ditto that on the popsicles, I make my own with fun molds by Tovolo or Cuisipro from Amazon or Homegoods.  In addition to fruit juice, you can use keifer which is liquid yogurt that's been around for thousands of years before "drinkable yogurt" which is not quite as healthy as keifer.  There's lots of brands/flavors.  In addition to frozen, my son who doesn't drink milk, loves keifer in a straw cup, especially the peach one.  Also I've noticed that the yogurt in a tube (not greek) like Stonyfield is a lot more liquidy than the kind in a cup.  his diaper always leaks if he has two of those at bedtime.  GL.
  • Why would you ever!? As it is I try and stay away from them for me and my kids. If your going to give them something that has sugar its much better to have the real thing then the chemical replacements. Always!
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  • Never? As long as you can keep it from them, is my answer....
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  • Have you tried ice water? My kiddos love ice water during the summer. They like shaking their ice water sippy cups too.

    Also maybe try watered down coconut water, smoothies or watermelon juice
  • LedabeLedabe member
    A new study came out not too long ago reporting a link to MS from too much artificial sweetener... ;)
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  • Have you tried making your own smoothies?  I got the magic bullet and my DD loves it.  I put oranges, peach or plums, bananas, and spinach and ice and they turn out delicious and healthy.
    imageNicole Hanna 11-23-2010
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