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Stepping stones to sugar-free hydration!

When considering our energy balance (calories in vs calories out), it’s not just food we have to think about, but also drinks. Many popular drinks are drenched in calories, and often packed with more sugar in one bottle than we should be consuming in an entire day! 

  • Adults should have no more than 30g of free sugars a day, (7 sugar cubes). 
  • Children aged 7 to 10 should have no more than 24g of free sugars a day (6 sugar cubes). 
  • Children aged 4 to 6 should have no more than 19g of free sugars a day (5 sugar cubes). 

…but a single 330ml can of Coca Cola contains 35grams…!!!


Sipping Stepping Stones

Gradually moving from original versions of fizzy drinks towards the sweetened, sugar-free varieties is one way to help reduce the unnecessary calories and sugars. This can be seen as the first stepping stone towards the ideal goal of basing our hydration around plain water. 


What about fruit juices

One popular question we often hear from the families we work with is ‘is orange juice just as bad as Coca Cola?’ Statements based around this question are regularly seen on social media and can be irresistible click-bait.  


When deciding if fruit juice should make up a part of our healthy lifestyle, we should remember that (just like most things!) it’s all about getting the portion size right.  


Current UK guidelines recommend limiting our fruit juice to one small glass (or 150ml) of unsweetened 100% fruit juice per day. This may count as 1 serving of fruit, and bring you and your children that bit closer to hitting your 5-a-day target. Along with this, fruit juices can help increase our daily vitamin C intake along with being a source of antioxidants.  


So the next time the sun is shining and you are looking for a thirst quencher, instead of reaching for the OJ carton, remember that you might be better off sticking with water and saving the juice as a once-a-day shot of goodness!