How and when should children drink sweets?

To the kids they love sweets. Sweet flavors, striking colors and shapes ... however, their amount of sugars and calories are very dangerous, especially in young children. Therefore, it is best to dose the amounts of candy to children, but how to do it? Should they be prohibited?

You have to be very careful with the trinkets because, for example, only 100 grams of jelly beans provide 360 ​​empty calories, that is, they are energy that has no nutrients, so eating them often causes the body to accumulate them and, therefore, favor diseases such as obesity.

Even so, the Spanish Association of Pediatrics of Primary Attention (Aepap) makes it clear: neither should they be prohibitedGo, especially if our children's friends eat them. "Although it is paradoxical, they can be a good excuse to reinforce good habits on which to make exceptions," they explain. Of course, provided they are accompanied by healthy lifestyle habits.


Thus, they assure that the trinkets can be useful for encourage the child's self-control, thus avoiding that the child behaves badly so that the parents are going to "negotiate" with him some kind of treatment: "if you behave well, I give you a jelly." Thus, the positive reinforcements must be indirect and for past actions: "as you have behaved well, this weekend I let you take two trinkets instead of one".

Tricks to give trinkets to children

There are many types of trinkets and not all are the same. For example, gum, hard candy or popcorn should not be given to children under three years, while the famous worms do not generate as many problems as sweets. Also, children under the age of four should not take nuts. Therefore, the Aepap recommends following these tips:


-Pacts a number of sweets a week. It is not convenient for children to take trinkets every day, even if they are few. So, the best thing is to agree with the little one there will be days without sweets (most) and others that you can take. In this way, the child will understand that jellybeans are something exceptional and with a justification (birthday, a special day a week, etc.).

-Diversify them. As we have said, not all trinkets They are nutritionally equal, and the best thing is that you distribute them to avoid occasional overloads of sugars. Thus, from the association explain that it is best to choose those that weigh less, because by the same volume or quantity (which is what our child perceives), they eat fewer calories.

-Don't let him peck. Avoid that your child pecks continuously: it is better to group them and take them, for example, "as dessert" of one of the meals. They also advise that they be taken sitting at the table and avoiding choking.


-Higiene buccal. Finally, take care of your hygiene: make sure that whenever your child takes trinkets he brushes his teeth afterwards to avoid cavities and grindstones, for example.

Angela R. Bonachera

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