Especially in this hot weather, it is crucial to remember how much water your child needs. Chances are, he would drink only sugary drinks if he had her way. So it’s up to you and Hubby to make sure she gets enough money.
Related: Toddler does not like t drink water: What to doBut according to surveys done by the Health Promotion Board (HPB) in 2008, 28 per cent of parents and caregivers gave their preschoolers sweetened drinks more than once a week. This is linked to poor dietary choices and obesity.
Nip this bad habit in the bud with these information nuggets by Letty Shiu, dietitian at the HPB’s Youth Health Division.
Related: 5 fun ways to get children to drink more waterDrink enoughYour toddler needs one to three 250ml glasses of water a day, while preschoolers need three to five. She should also consume two more glasses of fluids like milk, soup and porridge a day. Give her more if she’s very active, ill or if the weather is warmer.Keep countThe easiest way to monitor how much water she has had is to record the number of times you refilled her bottle. There’s no hard and fast rule on how frequently your kid should drink or how much at one go. It depends on what she has eaten or the activity she participated in.Don’t dehydrateYour kid needs water for important functions like regulating her body temperature and absorbing nutrients. Children also experience greater water loss from the skin, compared to adults.
Dehydration is no small matter, Letty warns. Even if her water loss is as little as 2 per cent of her body weight, it can affect her physical and mental responses, and influence her concentration at school.Add flavourIf she refuses to drink plain water, add orange wedges, strawberry slices or lemons to make it more appetising. Or make ice cubes of interesting shapes and add them to the water when the weather is warm.