Yakult/Vitagen/Yoghurt drink suitable for toddlers?

Oh, we're done with all that vegetable-steaming and mess, our children are cutlery-wielding, spaghetti-chomping angels... at least some of the time.

Yakult/Vitagen/Yoghurt drink suitable for toddlers?

Postby julian » 21 Feb 2013, 01:40

Hi All,

MIL is telling us that Vitagen (similar to Yakult) is not suitable for Cherub (who's almost 3). Am interested in your opinions/pointers to more information on the following questions:

1. The sugar content is listed as up to 10g per 100g (10%) - I am assuming that some/all of that is natural sugar (i.e. lactose). Am I right?
2. Should Vitagen be diluted as with fruit juice? Do you dilute fruit juice for your 3 year old (actually we don't give him fruit juice at all usually, but anyway...)
3. Any useful websites/information sources that has reliable information on this?

Thanks,

Julian
Cherub & DragonBoy
Born April 10, February 12
Happy to have chosen BLW
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Re: Yakult/Vitagen/Yoghurt drink suitable for toddlers?

Postby PerpetualMadness » 21 Feb 2013, 06:53

I don't see why it would hurt but, unless your lo has recently had antibiotics, it a bit like adding a teaspoon of bacteria to an ocean...
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Re: Yakult/Vitagen/Yoghurt drink suitable for toddlers?

Postby julian » 21 Feb 2013, 08:46

Thanks, actually I'm not particularly taken in by the whole 'good bacteria' thing, but Cherub likes them and he gets one as we leave for preschool. I assume it also has some calcium etc. which won't do any harm.

It's the sugar issue I'm suddenly trying to work out.
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Born April 10, February 12
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Re: Yakult/Vitagen/Yoghurt drink suitable for toddlers?

Postby cvious » 21 Feb 2013, 21:34

Yogurt does have quite a bit of sugar, even plain flavor. The plain greek yogurt we use has 7g in a 170g serving (which is how much she eats at one time). There's nothing in it but milk and cultures.

My point being a lot is naturally there.
Mama to Strawberry, sprouted July 2010, and Baby Bird, June 2013
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Re: Yakult/Vitagen/Yoghurt drink suitable for toddlers?

Postby FlossiesMum » 21 Feb 2013, 22:15

Haven't heard of Vitagen but let's start with Yakult:

Ingredients:
water, skimmed milk (reconstituted), glucose-fructose syrup, sugar, maltodextrin, flavouring, contains Lactobacillus casei Shirota.

Sugar:
14.2g per 100ml. As a comparison, Coca Cola has 10.6g per 100ml. So considerably more sugary than full sugar coke. Otherwise the ingredients are pretty similar, except Coke has some caffeine, and Yakult has some skimmed milk powder and 'magic' bacteria.

The diet version has 5.6g of sugars per 100ml. It still has some high fructose corn syrup as well as sweetener (so some of that 5.6g is added sugar, not lactose). Assuming the lactose conent is similar in both that's at least 9g of sugar per 100ml....so still similar to Coke levels of added sugar.

I am relatively chilled on what my kids eat but I wouldn't give them this.
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Re: Yakult/Vitagen/Yoghurt drink suitable for toddlers?

Postby julian » 22 Feb 2013, 02:03

Yes thanks FlossiesMum, I have also done a bit more digging and am not impressed either. Vitagen also has a 'less sugar' version, but that has 9-10g/100g. It also has fructose, glucose, and something else I can't remember. Also not impressive at all.

I found another way of calculating sugar, which is the proportion of calories derived from sugar in the food item. The calculation results in the Vitagen having 75% of its calories from sugar! Not good...

I was under the misguided impression that it was a kind of enhanced yoghurt, but now it seems like it's more like water with sugar and flavouring and some 'good bacteria' thrown in... and a bit of "milk emulsifier" (something like that, it's not in English).

I think we are going to cut it out... Though on the other hand it's probably no worse than giving him a cookie or something. He normally gets no sweets, cake, etc. Unless in exceptional cases, at parties, etc...

Hmmm the MIL was right. I suppose it happens :wink:
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Born April 10, February 12
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