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Can I give my toddler sports drinks or energy drinks? If not, why?

Hi everyone,

I am a first-time mom, and my toddler is very active. I recently saw some sports drinks and energy drinks marketed specifically for kids, and I was wondering if it is okay to give them to my little one. I know that these drinks are often consumed by adults to rehydrate after exercise or to stay awake, but I'm not sure if they are safe for kids.

I want to make sure that my child is getting the right nutrients and hydration, but I also don't want to give her anything that could be harmful. Can anyone tell me if it's safe to give sports drinks or energy drinks to toddlers? If not, why? What are the alternatives for keeping my child hydrated and energized during physical activity?

Any advice or insights would be helpful. Thank you in advance!

All Replies


Hi there,

I am not a medical professional, but I can share my personal experience with giving sports drinks to my toddler. My son is very active and often participates in soccer and other physical activities, so I thought that sports drinks would be a good way to keep him hydrated and energized.

However, after doing some research, I realized that many sports drinks contain a lot of sugar and artificial ingredients that can be harmful to young children. I also learned that toddlers don't really need sports drinks unless they are engaging in high-intensity exercise for more than an hour.

Instead of sports drinks, I try to encourage my son to drink water before, during, and after physical activity. If he needs some extra flavor, I will add a little bit of natural fruit juice to the water.

I haven't tried giving my son energy drinks, and I don't plan to. I think they contain too much caffeine and other stimulants that could be dangerous for young children.

Overall, I think it's important to be cautious about what we give our children, especially when it comes to their health and well-being. It's always a good idea to consult with a pediatrician or nutritionist if you have any questions or concerns.


Hi everyone,

As someone who has been working with children for over 10 years as a school nurse, I have seen a lot of issues related to sports drinks and energy drinks. In my experience, it is not necessary to give sports drinks or energy drinks to children.

Sports drinks are useful for athletes who require an essential electrolyte and energy balance, but for children, the added sugars and artificial flavors and colors can lead to dental and other health problems. Also, energy drinks have high caffeine content that can cause heart palpitations, increased blood pressure, and seizures. I have had to deal with several children who have had severe health complications due to consuming energy drinks.

For young children, water and a balanced diet are sufficient to keep them hydrated and healthy during play and activities. Moreover, children should be encouraged to drink water frequently throughout the day, not just during physical activities.

In my experience, parents can set a good example by drinking water in front of their children and by hydrating themselves frequently. It is also essential to monitor the activities of children, and if a child engages in rigorous physical activities, parents can opt for natural coconut water or homemade drinks made with fruits like oranges, lemon, and lime.

In conclusion, based on my experience as a nurse, I strongly advise against giving sports drinks or energy drinks to young children. Water and natural homemade drinks are safer alternatives and can be a healthier option for overall well-being.


Hi everyone,

As a fitness enthusiast and a father of a 4-year-old, I do not endorse giving sports drinks or energy drinks to toddlers.

Sports drinks contain carbohydrates and electrolytes that can increase a person's endurance and hydration during exercise. Energy drinks, on the other hand, contain caffeine, taurine, guarana, and other psychoactive stimulants that can elevate heart rate and can have other negative health effects when consumed at higher quantities.

Toddlers and young children do not need sports drinks or energy drinks as they do not engage in high-intensity activities, and it can even be harmful to their health. These drinks can cause tooth decay, mood swings, poor sleeping habits, and can lead to obesity.

Rather than giving sports drinks or energy drinks, parents should opt for fresh water or natural fruit juices, homemade electrolyte drinks, or coconut water, which have the necessary nutrients that children need without the added sugar, coloring, and caffeine.

In conclusion, I strongly recommend that parents avoid giving sports and energy drinks to their children. It's important to encourage healthy eating habits and to offer our children a nutritious diet to help them stay fit and healthy. Keep it simple, focus on drinking water or natural drinks, and when exercising or playing in hot weather, add a pinch of salt to their water to replace the lost electrolytes.


Hi everyone,

As a father of a three-year-old, I also had similar questions about sports drinks and energy drinks for my child. I did my research and spoke with my child's pediatrician, and here's what I learned.

Sports drinks generally are marketed to athletes who engage in high-intensity workouts for more than an hour. They contain electrolytes, carbohydrates, and other nutrients that replenish the body, which the body loses in prolonged aggressive workouts. However, they are not formulated for children who do not engage in such workouts. For toddlers and children who play for shorter periods, water and a balanced diet are sufficient to meet their needs.

Energy drinks, on the other hand, are not safe for children at all. They are high in caffeine, sugar, and other stimulants that can cause adverse health effects. Their caffeine content can be up to 10 times higher than that of cola or other sodas. These drinks can cause restlessness, seizures, palpitations, headaches, and other severe conditions.

In my experience, it is better to stick to plain water, which is easily available and cheap. Drinking water throughout the day can keep a child hydrated, especially during physical activity. A good way to encourage children to drink water is by keeping water bottles on hand and limiting other sugary and carbonated drinks.

In conclusion, as a parent, I would not recommend giving sports drinks or energy drinks to toddlers or young children. Instead, opt for water, which is better for your child's health and is an excellent habit to develop at an early age.


Hello there,

I am a mother of two toddlers, and I have some experience with giving sports drinks to my kids when they are active. Initially, I didn't give much thought to it, thinking that it's a better alternative to sugary juices and sodas. However, after doing some research, I realized the cons of sports drinks as well.

Sports drinks contain electrolytes and carbohydrates that are designed for athletes and people who engage in vigorous activities. The problem with giving sports drinks to toddlers is that they don't engage in the same level of physical activity. Toddlers don't sweat and lose salts and electrolytes in the same way an adult athlete does. Therefore, there is no real need to give a sports drink to a toddler.

Another issue is with the sugar content. Many sports drinks can contain as much sugar as soda, which is unhealthy for young children. Alongside that, their primary ingredient is water. Replacing water with a sports drink can lead to consuming more sugar and calories than required, leading to obesity and other health issues.

Instead of sports drinks, I prefer to keep my kids hydrated with water or low-sugar fruit juice. If they are engaging in vigorous activities, I will offer them sliced fruits or a homemade electrolyte drink made with natural ingredients like coconut water and sea salt.

In conclusion, sports drinks may seem like a tempting option, but they are not the right choice for young children. Instead, it's best to provide your child with a well-balanced diet and offer them water or low-sugar drinks during and after physical activities.


Hello everyone,

As a mother of two young children, I would also like to contribute to this conversation. I decided to do some research before giving my children sports drinks or energy drinks. After my research, I learned that sports drinks contain added sugar, and many energy drinks have high caffeine content. It can lead to unhealthy habits and addiction, which can be dangerous for young children.

In my opinion, it's best to keep things simple when it comes to hydration for toddlers. Water is the most basic and effective way to hydrate a child, especially if they are not participating in high-intensity activities. Plain water does not contain added sugars, and it flushes out toxins from the body.

If a child loses electrolytes due to activities like playing outdoors in hot weather, water with a pinch of organic sea salt can help replenish them. I also encourage my children to eat a diet rich in fresh fruits and vegetables to make sure they get all the necessary nutrients to stay healthy.

In conclusion, it's best not to give sports drinks or energy drinks to young children. As a parent, I want to make sure I'm encouraging healthy habits and nourishing my children with nutritious foods and drinks. Hydration is essential, but it's best to stick to plain water, especially for toddlers who are not participating in high-intensity activities.


Hello all,

As a mother of a toddler, I have also had similar questions regarding sports drinks and energy drinks for children. I sought advice from my pediatrician, and here's what I learned.

Sports drinks are formulated for athletes and people who engage in vigorous physical activity for prolonged periods. As children don't generally participate in high-intensity exercises, sports drinks are not necessary, and in fact, can be harmful. They contain added sugar, calories, and artificial colors and flavors, which can lead to dental decay, weight gain, and other health issues.

Energy drinks are even more harmful for children. They have high caffeine content, which can lead to sleep disturbances, rapid heart rate, anxiety, and even increased blood pressure. Energy drinks also contain added sugar and are acidic, which can cause tooth decay.

So, it's best to avoid giving sports and energy drinks to toddlers. Instead, plain water or fruit juice diluted with water is sufficient to hydrate your child during physical activity. Children should be encouraged to drink water frequently to stay hydrated throughout the day.

Of course, all kids are different, and it's best to consult with your pediatrician regarding your child's hydration needs. They can provide tailored advice on what drinks and foods to offer your child based on their age, activity level, and overall health.

In conclusion, in my experience, it's best to steer clear of sports and energy drinks for toddlers. Instead, offer plain water and age-appropriate drinks and foods to keep your child hydrated and healthy.



As a parent to two young children, I am quite concerned about their hydration and nutritional needs. I have recently heard about sports and energy drinks being marketed to children and was curious about their safety for young kids.

After doing some research and speaking with my children's pediatrician, I have come to the conclusion that sports and energy drinks are not safe for children. These drinks contain high levels of caffeine, sugar, and artificial coloring, which can lead to health problems, especially in young children.

Instead, I encourage my kids to consume plain water or homemade juices made with fresh fruits and vegetables. We also incorporate fruits and veggies into our meals to ensure that they are getting all the necessary nutrients.

Although my children are active and engage in physical activities, I do not feel that sports drinks are necessary. As other parents have mentioned in this thread, a well-balanced diet and water are sufficient to meet their hydration and nutritional needs.

In conclusion, based on my experience, I will not offer sports or energy drinks to my children. I prefer to offer plain water and a balanced diet that includes fresh fruits and veggies to keep my kids healthy and hydrated.

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