Which kinds of sugar are suitable for children to eat?
(02.21.2008)

In daily life, the general sugars include cane sugar, maltose, honey sugar and glucose. As cane sugar is delicious, convenient for eating and relatively cheap, its amount of consumption is higher than the other sugars. However, if children eat too much cane sugar, their teeth can easily deteriorate and their digestive function can be weakened. Therefore, which kind of sugar is the most suitable for children to eat?

According to the Chinese medical theory "the essence of water and grain is the source of the human soul" and the modern medical theory "foodstuffs are the essential components of nutrition", maltose is the most suitable sugar for children. Maltose has the function of invigorating the spleen and stomach, aiding digestion, increasing the appetite and alleviating stomach pain. It can also make teeth healthier. Next is honey sugar; honey has many organic chemical substances which are beneficial for the human body, and as it contains no hormones, it is an ideal sweetening agent for children. Honey sugar is classified into two kinds: raw honey sugar and ripe honey sugar. The raw honey sugar is cold and cool-natured; ripe honey sugar is neutral and mild-natured.

For oral usage, children should eat ripe honey. Honey has the functions of moistening the lungs, stopping coughs, whetting the appetite and aiding digestion. To mitigate or alleviate symptoms, if a child has a cough with a lung infection, a dry pharynx and/or a dry mouth, he/she could take a sufficient quantity of ripe honey mixed with warm boiled water, or honey added to a liquid food such as milk powder, thin gruel or arrowroot. If a child suffers from constipation or dry stools, he/she might also loosen their bowels to relieve their constipation with the above-mentioned methods. In addition, honey sugar does not spoil teeth in the same way that cane sugar does: it can protect the teeth and clean the mouth cavity with its antibacterial action. Note: if a child suffers from allergies, or is less than 1 year old, honey sugar is not suitable for the child.