5 Easy Ways To Cut Sugar From Your Child’s Diet

5 Ways to To Reduce Your Child's Sugar Intake Instanty!

Most kids (including mine) love sugar. But most of them get way too much. Added sugar, the kind put in by manufacturers, comes from the usual suspects like soda, candy, and desserts. But plenty of staples in children’s diets provide added sugar too–even seemingly healthy stuff like yogurt and whole grain cereal.

Problem is, with so many foods and drinks containing added sugar, kids start expecting everything to be sweet. And when the sweet tooth is stoked by hyper-sugary stuff, more mildly-sweet foods like vegetables (and even unsweetened drinks like water) may start to lose their appeal.

So reducing the added sugar in your child’s diet makes sense, both for their health and their flavor preferences. You could buy unsweetened foods and drinks and sweeten them yourself (or just serve them plain). You could also take a gradual approach, which works well for kids who are devoted to their very favorites.

One way to do that is to go “halfsies”: Combine sweet foods and drinks with their unsweetened counterparts. You’ll significantly cut the total added sugar but preserve some of the sweet taste. As your kids get used to a less sweet flavor, you can even transition to the unsweetened version completely (or add fruit or a touch of honey to foods like cereal and yogurt).

Here’s one I’ve been doing lately:

5 Ways to Reduce Sugar In Your Child's Favorites Instantly! from Real Mom Nutrition

There are plenty of ways to use this sugar-slashing trick. Do you use this “halfsies” method? Tell me!

5 Ways to Reduce Sugar In Your Child's Favorites Instantly! from Real Mom Nutrition 5 Ways to Reduce Sugar In Your Child's Favorites Instantly! from Real Mom Nutrition
5 Ways to Reduce Sugar In Your Child's Favorites Instantly! from Real Mom Nutrition 5 Ways to Reduce Sugar In Your Child's Favorites Instantly! from Real Mom Nutrition


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  1. Emily says

    This is a great reminder! I do this with yogurt like you do, apple juice (1/2 cup juice and 1/2 cup water), and cereal (1/2 serving granola and 1/2 serving Cheerios).

    • says

      Emily–good idea with the granola. Granola is typically so calorie-dense, I really try to watch my portion. Combining it with Cheerios is a good way to make it go farther.

  2. says

    These are such great and simple ideas! My son is still young enough that I control everything he eats but I’m already nervous about when he starts going over to friends’ houses and really experiences how much sweeter everything can taste! I love that these suggestions are so realistic for all families and ages!

  3. says

    Wow, we are doing this at our house too after watching Fed Up! I do the chocolate milk, cereal and yogurt! We also have been skipping the syrup on our pancakes and using pureed blueberries. We do lots of frozen fruits! I also had the kids buy a pack of SF fruit flavored gum to help cut down on all the Halloween candy, blah! Let me know if you find a kid-friendly low-sugar “go-gurt” – those are like candy, ahh! Great post!

    • Jennifer says

      You can make your own using Zipzicle bags. They are zip top bags the size and shape of a go-gurt. They are also great for making your own ice pops and for portion control for snacks like trail mix.

  4. says

    I love the visual comparison pics on your post! We use most of these lower-sugar version products at our house…but I love me some honey toasted oats. Maybe one day I’ll make the switch to plain…

  5. Sarah says

    i can’t believe this post gets no love! It was so eye-opening for me. Such an easy, easy way to cut sugar. I use it all the time with my sweetened yogurt loving crew – and they never notice! It also works great with chocolate milk, although we restrict that treat to grandma’s house only (we see her for 3 day stretches once a month or once every other month). Actually, that’s my favorite trick – save the junkie stuff for grandma’s house only. She looks like a rock star, and I keep the crap out of our house. This is one of my all time favorite posts of yours.

    • says

      Thanks Jessica! It’s such a great trick and my kids have never commented negatively about it when I serve it to them. Never even noticed.


  1. […] What worked: For the most part, I stopped putting any kind of sweet in my kids’ lunch boxes since they enjoy having something after dinner. I made a conscious effort to buy cereals with around 5 or fewer grams of sugar per serving (read: “My 5 Favorite Boxed Cereals“). I also trimmed sugar in foods like yogurt (read: “5 Easy Ways to Cut Sugar From Your Child’s Diet“). […]

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