Published in The Sun | 18th May 2016

Does your toddler have a tummy ache? There’s one fruit juice that could solve the problem

NEW research has revealed that a little bit of apple juice mixed with water can help cure stomach pain in children under the age of five.

Doctors found the drink to be ideal for treating mild gastroenteritis in toddlers and might even be a better solution than over-the-counter medicines.

istock_000056060218_medium-copy-20151020195359.jpg~q75,dx720y432u1r1gg,c--Kids who were troubled with tummy ache and mild dehydration experienced fewer problems and didn't need as much hospital treatment after they were given the diluted juice, followed by their favourite drink.

This was in comparison to children who received other fluid-loss solutions to try and cure gastroenteritis, which is a common condition for that age group.

Often parents use an electrolyte maintenance solution to help treat and prevent dehydration, but it can be costly and doesn't taste nice to children.

And it hasn't been proved to actually cure mildly dehydrated babies and toddlers.

The research, carried out by the University of Calgary in Alberta, Canada, studied 647 children between the ages of six months and five-years-old.

Each child who entered a local emergency department was suffering with mild dehydration from gastroenteritis.

Half the children received a diluted apple juice drink and then their preferred fluid after, while the other half were given an apple-flavoured electrolyte solution.

A whopping 25 per cent of children who drunk the electrolyte solution still needed intravenous fluids or more hospital treatment.

But in comparison, only 17 per cent of kids who drunk the mixed apple juice drink followed by their favourite liquid, needed additional medication.

apple_2839452aThe group to respond best to the apple juice and water concoction were the two-year-olds and over but even the younger kids fared slightly better than with the other drink.

Also, the children who were given the fruit solution needed less IV fluids than those who had received the flavoured electrolyte fluid.

Study leader Dr Stephen Freedman said: “These results challenge the recommendation to routinely administer electrolyte maintenance solution when stomach pains and diarrhoea begins.

“In many higher-income countries, the use of dilute apple juice may be an appropriate alternative to electrolyte maintenance fluids in children with mild gastroenteritis and minimal dehydration.”

The findings were published online by the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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