Tea and kids? - Mothering Forums
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#1 of 22 Old 12-12-2009, 12:51 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I'm writing here because I grew up in the UK where everyone drank tea. You don't grow out of that habit, so even though I've been in the USA for over 20 years, I still drink it daily. My friends here think it is crazy that my four year old likes tea... and crazy that I give it to her (she drinks decaf!)

So I'm wondering what the norm is across the pond. In the UK do kids as young as four drink tea? I'm sure not all of them, but is it considered weird if they do?
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#2 of 22 Old 12-12-2009, 07:33 PM
 
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I don't know anyone who gives black tea to small children. It used to be done, years ago, usually in a bottle with tons of sugar. The advice these days is not to give it at all as it depletes iron and contains caffeine.
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#3 of 22 Old 12-12-2009, 07:44 PM
 
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I don't think it's an issue. My grandfather always gave us a bit of cafe au lait, heavy on the milk when we were kids and my great-grandmother used to pour black coffee over my cereal. I didn't die from it, didn't get ill from it. There are far worse things she could have.
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#4 of 22 Old 12-12-2009, 09:58 PM
 
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If your dd likes it then I don't see why she shouldn't drink it.

My 12yo loves tea and will have it if I have the kettle on. He and my eldest also love iced tea when it is hot and took bottles of it to school last summer to drink throughout the day. Their friends liked it too!

My mum is a tea-belly. Every change of pace in the day is accompanied by the kettle boiling. She probably drinks at least a dozen cups a day I would think but it is mostly decaff Earl Grey nowadays.

I've never heard official advice given on tea drinking but I haven't seen a health visitor for years
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#5 of 22 Old 12-13-2009, 04:20 PM
 
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Four's a bit younger than most people start, but my first and third kids like tea. I try to give them decaff though, or head them towards rooibois.

Helen mum to five and mistress of mess and mayhem, making merry and mischief til the sun goes down.
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#6 of 22 Old 12-14-2009, 08:12 AM
 
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My daughter has been enjoying a cup of tea for a few years now. She is five now. We did start her on decaf initially, but that is minging, so she has ordinary tea. She doesn't like it super weak or super milky either. She prefers it to hot choclate.
Tea can reduce uptake of iron in the diet, but without being aware of the science, I should think one cup every now and again, or daily is hardly going to send her into a state of micronutrient deficiency.
I'd rather she had a cup of tea over some horrid soft drink with artificial sweeteners.

When she was two she got hold of my (i thought) empty coffee cup, and drank all the dregs. She did not blink till the afternoon! She has never had any since, she thinks it smells horrid.
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#7 of 22 Old 12-14-2009, 06:46 PM
 
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I was discussing this with a friend and she says that in some countries it's usual to give milky coffee to babies! I suppose they get used to it but it's not something I fancy trying.

Dalerose, I don't think the odd cup will do any harm for a child. I think the big issues are giving it to a baby in a bottle with loads of sugar and having it with meals, which affects the absorption of iron.
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#8 of 22 Old 12-14-2009, 06:51 PM
 
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I give my 3 y.o. a small splash of iced tea in a cup of water when we are drinking it. I read in the Little House books about giving a toddler a little hot black tea in a cup of milk so she could feel like a big girl too, it was an American tradition since way back too apparently.
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#9 of 22 Old 12-15-2009, 06:04 AM
 
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My two have a cup every morning, just one, with lots of milk and a little sugar. I never buy any juice/pop, they drink tea, fresh fruit/veg juices and water.

Lisa: Homeschooling Mum of ds, 8 and dd, 6
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#10 of 22 Old 12-15-2009, 09:13 AM
 
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Quote:
The advice these days is not to give it at all as it depletes iron and contains caffeine.
Same as.

Most people I know who did give their small child tea - give them a drop of tea in a cup of milk! They think they are getting something really special then and being just like mummy/daddy! hehe

I don't like tea - well I drink a lot of herbal teas but never just plain black tea. My son has never been interested in trying it. He won't have anything unless its room temp though so that might be one of the main reasons why! lol

I don't think a little bit can hurt...its not my cup of tea though (ha! lol)...

Mummy me : > Thats Ann! and my beautiful SONS Duncanand Hamish 19/09/05 & 22/04/10!
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#11 of 22 Old 12-15-2009, 03:39 PM
 
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I let Dc have tea once a day if it;s Very weak and milky -- DD went thru a phase of loving it when she was about 2 yo. Can't remember last time any DC asked for it, though.

Haha, you didn't ask about alcohol -- I think the legal English age to let kids have that at home with their parents is 5yo or 8yo... anyway, starting at 8yo we let the kids have a little bit of alcohol, very watered down, once on the weekend -- as soon as the novelty wears off they forget all about this 'adult' privilege, and never ask for it anymore.

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#12 of 22 Old 12-21-2009, 05:36 PM
 
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i wouldn't give more than a sip of black tea to children but mine drink rooibos (like me and daddy) yum!

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#13 of 22 Old 12-30-2009, 10:24 AM
 
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Thanks for this thread, I was just coming to ask, as my DD loves rinking tea with us.

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#14 of 22 Old 12-30-2009, 10:31 AM
 
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My boys love tea... especially the fruity herbal teas and they have had them since they were starting to drink from a cup (so at about a year)...

We don't drink much juice so tea is a great for changing things around taste wise...

My two youngest also love grain coffee (no caffeine) and I remember drinking that when I was very young also...

 
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#15 of 22 Old 01-22-2010, 05:21 PM
 
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I grew up on tea. Yum yum. I've been drinking it since I can remember. Coffee was for "teenagers and adults", as I was reminded every day by my dad when I tried to sneak a sip. :P

DS hasn't had black tea (He's only just turned 1 - maybe in a couple of years), but has had camomile tea to settle his stomach once or twice.
HannahW likes this.
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#16 of 22 Old 01-24-2010, 05:16 PM
 
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TBH, knowing how much tea (caffeine) affects me, I am horrified when I see it given to little kids. Decaf is a bit different, of course. It is not just a matter or nutrients but caffeine makes adrenal problems worse... and there are kids out there with weak adrenals. I get the feeling that things sometimes feel safe because they are familiar or part of a culture's ways since long ago.

Mama to a little lady and always praying for more.
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#17 of 22 Old 01-24-2010, 05:41 PM
 
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I know a 4yo who drinks tea. You always have the option of herbal teas for the little ones. After being mostly caffeine-free for a couple years due to pg and bfing, I definitely notice a kick from decaf coffee.. but decaf tea has a very small amount.
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#18 of 22 Old 01-21-2011, 07:14 PM
 
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i thought tea...decaff, was actually good for you! i drink it and my 7 yr old sometimes.


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#19 of 22 Old 01-22-2011, 05:05 AM
 
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My daycare children (ages 2 - 7) and I often enjoy a cup of chamomile tea after nap time... We like ours with honey!

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#20 of 22 Old 07-17-2012, 01:33 PM
 
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Tea can provide great health benefits for kids. However, it's recommended for the tea to be caffeine-free and low-sugar. Both can be found in a lot of tea's on the market- making something with a lot of health benefits, unhealthy.

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#21 of 22 Old 07-17-2012, 01:45 PM
 
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I live in US but I am from Russia. You know what I think is crazy? I think it is crazy that kids in US drink soda.

 

My kids always drunk normal caffenated tea from Earl Grey to Yorkshire gold.

 

Tea is very healthy and good for you. Caffeine is OK in moderation.

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#22 of 22 Old 07-17-2012, 01:48 PM
 
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Iron depeletion? Weak adrenals?

 

I do not know....I did not see scored of anemic adrenal depleted kids in my childhood.

 

Tea is drunk in many cultures. It has many anti cancer and pro heart benefits.

 

We drink tea straight, wihout sugar or milk

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