My 4 years old daughter like to drink Coca-Cola and when her grandpa was around she was permitted to drink 100-200ml of carbonated drinks. Should I forbid her drinking soft drinks? What could be appropriate age to consume carbonated or soft drinks? What should be permissible quantity of that drinks?

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    LINK If you feel the calories are okay, and are not worried about her dental habits, you are the parent. My parents allowed soft drinks once a week and we had to brush our teeth after. We were very active on that day -- skiing, playing other sports, hiking and so on. I think teaching moderation is okay. However, I also think it is completely up to you -- no matter what her grandparent thinks.
    – WRX
    Feb 10 '17 at 20:32
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    What are you worried will happen if she drinks them? If we know that, we can better address your concerns.
    – Becuzz
    Feb 10 '17 at 21:00
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    Do you drink them? Do you have them in your home? We don't let our kids drink them, but we never make a big deal about it when they have it on their own (out with other family or at a birthday party). We parents generally don't drink them either.
    – Adam Heeg
    Feb 10 '17 at 21:30
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    It's probably safe to say no human should ever consume typical mainstream sodas but mostly because of a cost/manufacturing affect on the choice ingredients. You can carbonate many beverages that would be considered soda and not have the trending conflicts with things like food coloring and corn syrup. I say this as I'm drinking Mtn Dew so clearly I don't stress it too much. But I doubt you'll find a credible nutritionalist that will say coca cola in any variety could be considered healthy for your body or teeth
    – Kai Qing
    Feb 10 '17 at 21:48
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    Well uhh I don't like soft drinks. Maybe you should try to find a way to make your daughter forget they ever existed by not mentioning it. And 4 is really young to drink such things.
    – Bradman175
    Feb 11 '17 at 3:37

There is a pretty clear link between soda consumption and obesity. See, for example, https://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/sugary-drinks-fact-sheet/

Awareness around this link is clearly rising and as a result soda consumption in the US has started to decline http://www.businessinsider.com/americans-are-drinking-less-soda-2016-3 Still, the average soda consumption per person in the US is still at whopping 40 gallons (or about 150 liters) per year. Given that many people don't drink any soda at all, the consumption of actual soda drinkers is a lot higher.

Soda is entirely an acquired habit, so the more you can postpone soda in your daughter's life, the less likely it is to become a potentially harmful habit. Ideally you communicate this positively. Bad: "You can only have soda once a week". This makes it something special and desirable. Better: "Soda is really not good for you. Why don't we find something that's good for you and really yummy too. How about ... "

Obviously, role-modeling will help and you need to practice what you preach. You can't make a credible argument that "it's not good for you", if you drink it yourself.

We never had soda in the house and when the kids got eventually exposed to it, they found it too sweet. It seem to have stuck: Now as adults they still don't drink soda.

  • We've always associated soda with celebrations such as birthday parties. We normally never have any sora in the house except for those occasions. The kids never ask for it and enjoy drinking the orange/apple juices and other healthy drinks more. Even during school events they will sometimes opt for healtier options rather than soda on their own. The less casual it becomes, the less interested you get. Just like cake.
    – Migz
    Mar 1 '17 at 8:42

It would be best to think of sugary drinks like candy - a treat to be enjoyed once in a while. There is no nutritional value in sugary soft drinks, the sugar is just empty calories. Very little nutritional value in sugary fruit juices either.

So I'd not forbid them, but I wouldn't routinely stock the house with such items.

I got to liking unsweetened tea years ago while living in the north of the US. Now I'm back in the south and sweet tea tastes like pancake syrup. All I can taste is the sugar. So liking sugary drinks is an acquired taste.

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    "It would be best to think of sugary drinks like candy" - this. As a matter of fact, from a nutritional point of view they are candy - just dissolved in water.
    – sleske
    Feb 12 '17 at 23:16

I think you should try to avoid sugar eating habits in her life. Young children are drawn to fats and sugars.

Instead of giving candies or juices our family tries to find tasty fruits and vegetables. The main reason is to teach good habits.

At previous birthdayparty at our house none of the dozen kids wanted soft drinks. They asked for home made juice.

Bubbly drinks are habits.

I do drink cola or fanta when I'm eating a pizza now and then. But my kids prefer milk, juice, or plain water.

If you are wondering can you advice her grandparents about soft drinks? Sure you can. Suggest a substitute or another way to treat your daughter. Maybe they'll listen to you.

My mother didn't. My mother in law did.

  • As a note, juice really isn't much better than soda, whether it's made at home or store bought.
    – Catija
    Feb 15 '17 at 22:31
  • That depends on juice and amount of sugar it holds. When I am giving juice from the store to my kids I put one half water and another half juice. My kids are used to not so sweet drinks.
    – KettuJKL
    Feb 16 '17 at 5:07

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