Top 10 Ways to Get Your Kids to Drink Water (and how much they need)

Posted by Marc Mischkind on

We all know it is important for adults to drink at least 16 oz of water a day but what about our kids?

Like eating vegetables, reading or anything else healthy (lol), it can be an uphill battle trying to get your kids to drink water. It is important, however, especially if they are active because our bodies lose water through breathing, sweating and digestion.

Kids need at least 8 oz of water a day, depending on their age and activity level, and other drinks such as juice or milk just don’t cut it. We all know that kids are more likely to comply with something if its FUN so here are Kinia’s top 10 suggestions for making water consumption more interesting:

  1. Use frozen fruit in place of ice cubes or consider buying fun straws (mustache or curly straws tend to be very popular) only let your kids use the fun straws for water so it feels like a treat.
  2. Infuse your water with flavor by adding fruits like berries, cucumbers, lemons or limes. A tiny bit of stevia or monks fruit can also be added to punch up the fruit flavors.
  3. Freeze ice cube trays with berries and add this to your water to keep it extra cold. Your kids will love the fun colors.
  4. Provide your child with their own special drinking cup, mug or water bottle
  5. Stickers help. Set up a reward system when your child drinks more water. Give your child a reward sticker for drinking their water or do a special dance when they give you an empty bottle.
  6. Lead by example. The more your children see you drinking water and carrying out healthy habits, the more likely they are to do the same.
  7. Always carry a water bottle. Keep one for your child in your car, put one in their backpack, take it on trips, and keep in your refrigerator at home.
  8. Get your kids a STEM, interactive mug and turn water consumption seamlessly into play time.
  9. Always go for water instead of sugar-sweetened beverages. Substituting water for one 20-ounce sugar-sweetened soda will save your child (or you) about 240 calories. Sugar-sweetened beverages can include fruit drinks, sports drinks such as Gatorade and Powerade and non-diet soda.
  10. Choose water instead of other beverages when eating out. Generally, you will save money and reduce calories.

But What if My Child Doesn’t Like the Taste of Water?

As a nutritionist I would hear this constantly from parents and I vividly remember being the kid who always had to order water at McDonalds. Initially it did feel like I was missing out but do you know what? As I grew older and older and drank water more and more my taste buds changed and by the time I was a teenager I loved the taste of an ice cold water (especially on a hot day). As an adult water is my drink of choice and I would never even consider, or desire, a soft drink or juice that I hadn’t pressed myself. That disciple that my mother taught me wasn’t a punishment, it was a wonderful gift, and I am grateful beyond words that she taught me to have healthy habits. I actually thank her for it and your kids will too (someday).

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