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Back to School Hydration - How to Keep Your Kids Hydrated

Well it looks like the summer holidays are over and for our children that can only mean one thing, back to school!!!

Whilst this may not be the best of news for some of our youngsters, parents everywhere will be smiling at the thought of their kids studying for their future.  But there is one aspect that needs serious consideration, how do we know for certain that our children are staying hydrated while out of our sight?

Can you remember the fun and games around school dinner times? Okay the food may or may not have been to our liking, but we managed to eat well enough.  But how about taking enough fluids on board throughout the school day to keep hydrated?  Our kids are constantly in danger of dehydration because of their lower body weight compared to adults.

Did you know that a typical child's body is made up of a staggering 60% of water?  So no wonder it is vitally important that we need to monitor our childs hydration levels around the clock.  By topping up regularly with water whilst at school, we can ensure our kids stay both healthy and alert enough to take in and process the information that is being taught in the classroom.

The amount of fluid a child needs depends on many factors including their age, their gender, the weather and how much physical activity they do, but generally speaking they should aim to drink about 6-8 glasses of fluid per day. Younger children need relatively smaller drinks (e.g 120-150ml servings) and older children need larger drinks (e.g 250-300ml servings).

The guide below is intended to help parents, teachers and carers choose a balance of drinks for children aged 4-13 years old.

WATER - DRINK PLENTY

Water is a great choice throughout the day because it hydrates without providing extra calories or risking harm to teeth. And don't just settle for any water, the best water for our kids is filtered water taking out many of the impurities within our drinking water that may well be harmful.

MILK - HAVE REGULARLY 

Provides water and is a useful source of nutrients, especially protein, B vitamins and calcium.  Most children should drink semi-skinned milk. Milky drinks containing added sugar such as milkshakes, hot chocolate and malted drinks should only be drunk occasionally.

FRUIT JUICES - HAVE IN MODERATION 

Provide water and some vitamins and minerals.  One serving of 100% fruit juice counts towards a a maximum of one portion of a childs 5-a day.  Fruit juices contain sugar an can be acidic, so to reduce the risk of harming teeth, it is better to dilute fruit juice water and to drink fruit juice at meal times. And of course diluting it with filtered water is even better still.

SMOOTHIES - CAN HAVE ONCE A DAY 

Provide water and some vitamins and minerals.  One serving of smoothie can count as a maximum of two of a childs 5-a-day (if they contian 150ml of fruit juice and 80g crushed or pulped fruit).  Smoothies contain sugar and can be acidic, so to reduce the risk of harming teeth, it is better to dilute fruit juice with water and to drink fruit juice at meal times.  And of course diluting it with filtered water is even better still.

LOW CALORIE SOFT DRINKS - JUST OCCASIONALLY

Provide water without extra calories, but can be acidic, so so having these too often may risk harm to teeth. Also, be aware that some may contain caffeine.

SOFT DRINKS CONTAINING SUGAR - JUST OCCASIONALLY (and in small amounts)

Provide water but also calories without any extra nutrients. They can also be acidic, so having these too often may risk harm to teeth. Be aware that some may contain caffeine.

TEA AND COFFEE - JUST OCCASIONALLY (and in small amounts if caffeinated)

Caffeine is a stimulant naturally present in coffee and in smaller amounts in tea.  Small amounts of caffeine are harmless but high intakes should be avoided especially for young children. It is best for children to drink decaffeinated tea and coffee with semi-skimmed milk and no added sugar. Filtered water is best as it not only removes impurities that may be present but also improves the taste and smell of both tea and coffee.

For our full range of water filters for all types of applications to help you keep your children hydrated visit our website www.finerfilters.co.uk or if you need any advice please do not hesitate to give us a call on 01704 807600 or email at enquiries@finerfilters.co.uk and a member of our sales team will be on hand to help.