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A 41-year-old female asked:

Can i give my 2 year old artificially sweetened water? i get conflicting search results saying it's perfectly fine and some say absolutely not. (first time mom here). she won't drink plain or even fresh-fruit enhanced water?

2 doctor answers3 doctors weighed in
Dr. James Ferguson
Pediatrics 47 years experience
Consider this. I kid will take in enough fluid value in foods or liquids to quench any thirst. A 2 yo is often ready to manipulate you at will. If you want to program their brain to desire sweats, offering sweets as a bribe is how it is done, artificial or not. The programing lasts a lifetime.
Dr. Christine Hom
Pediatrics 31 years experience
It depends. What is your child drinking now? If your child is obese and taking in too many calories from sweetened beverages, it may be better to eliminate the added sugar. I would always prefer plain or carbonated water, or stick to milk at meals. A 2 year old can be taught to drink unsweetened beverages, rather than be programmed to seek sugar.

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