Who Cares What This Kids Tea is Sweetened With…

Drazil Kids Tea

Drazil – which is lizard spelled backwards – is a young company trying to differentiate itself in a very competitive beverage market. It sells iced tea targeted at kids: unlike other brands, Drazil does not use sugar as a sweetener. Instead, natural fruit juice is employed.

This is the ingredient list for Punch Passion flavor:

Naturally Caffeine-Free, Brewed Organic Herbal Tea (Filtered Water Infused with Rose Hips, Rooibos, Hibiscus, Poemgranate Bits, Strawberry Pieces), White Grape Juice, Apple Juice, Passion Fruit Juice (Filtered Water, Juice Concentrates), Natural Flavors, Ascorbic Acid (Vitamin C).

We’ll make it short and snappy for you: Water, fruit juice, bits of herbals, and “natural flavor”. Basically we’ve got a watered down fruit juice here.

A serving of Drazil is 6.75 fl oz (less than a standard 8 fl oz cup) and has 50 calories. The sugars content is 14 grams – equivalent to 3 and a half teaspoons.

It’s true that the sugars in this drink do not originate in sugar-cane or beets, but for all practical purposes, the sugars from apple juice or grape juice are not any healthier.

There is a false aura of health that fruit juices exude. Unlike a whole fruit, that comes with fiber and many antioxidants, the juice is almost nutrient-void. In addition, eating a real fruit takes effort and time – chewing and swallowing. This automatically limits calorie intake. When it comes to juice, juice drinks, and kiddie teas – basically any liquid – the calorie toll quickly adds up.

Sure, this beverage can be an occasional treat for kids. But don’t sell it to parents as a healthy drink.

We’ll take this opportunity to remind parents – start your toddlers off with water and keep them away from juice and soda for as long as possible. It’s almost impossible to convert a 10-year old used to 2-3 cups of sweetened drinks per day into drinking plain water.

(H/T to Marion Nestle)

Get Fooducated

  • Catherine

    I am so glad I learned from my sisters’ mistakes and only gave my kids water. They are 12 and 8 and nearly exclusively drink water. I am not saying that to sound superior – I am just grateful that I am not fighting the sugar battle in that area at least!

  • Lena

    Hey how about you recommend us snacks to to give to our kids instead of just whining all the time? Seeing you do nothing but tear down products is not helpful to me at all.

    • Audrey

      Homemade iced tea with a splash of lemonade!

    • OutThereBad

      I could’ve sworn that it said water was a great alternative. Instead of being exactly what you claim the site is doing, understand what the purpose of the site is (which is expose pitfalls in food).
      This is a great site

    • Jason

      Actually many times I don’t know myself what products to avoid all the time. I remember coming back to work from being sick one time and telling my manager I drink two cartons of apple juice thinking it was the fake servings of fruit advertised on the package that cured my cold. I got an odd look and informed that was way to much sugar. Keep informing us fooducate. If our doctors and the USDA won’t inform us, we’ll take the help any way we can get it. Sugar kills!!

    • http://www.fooducate.com/ Fooducate

      Since you asked so nicely, we’d love to help :-)

      A simple search on this site can easily help you find posts such as this:

      http://blog.fooducate.com/2013/09/11/top-10-healthy-snacks-for-kids/

    • anonymous

      My goodness, then uninstall the app..

  • mfp142

    Fruit juice sets the kids up for a sugar crash and can also cause WICKED diarrhea. It’s not good for them to drink all the time. Just once or twice a month.

  • Teresa Harris

    Yeah 90%of our body is water,so kids drink as much as you can and often.The best drink low to no sugar KOOLAID loaded with,vitamin C.

    • Seajay

      …And all the controversial artificial color, controversial artificial flavor and controversial artificial additives you can handle!! But no worries, no sugar.

    • CJrMom

      WAAAAY artificial!!!

  • H2O

    I grow mint in my garden. It’s very easy to grow. I make mint tea for my family or I will add mint to my water .

  • Carol H

    I don’t have a problem with a company offering a tasty drink that is much lower in calories than what the typical offerings are (soda, over-sweet juices, etc.); in fact it’s a good thing. “Watered-down” drinks (real iced tea with a squeeze of lemon and a teaspoon of sugar would be in that category, after all) are much better than those with a high concentration of sugar (or artificial sweeteners). But Drazil is screwing up big time by not showing any nutrition or ingredient info on their website (that I can find). Not only is it against food labeling regulations (since nutrient and health claims are being made), but it implies something to hide… which doesn’t support the intended theme of “better for you.” And in fact the nutrition and ingredients don’t support the many claims being made (e.g., to claim “no added sugar” you must meet the test of nothing added that provides sugar and/or is being used to sweeten, which the juice clearly does; and health claims for the herbs and fruits in the tea cannot be made for the small amounts contained in the drink, especially when no nutrition data is provided showing how much is in one serving). That said… I think it’s a product that could move kids in the right direction… away from the worse alternatives. A huge juice company rolled out a decent, less sweet juice + tea product a few years ago that was along similar lines, but it bombed. People apparently weren’t ready for it. Things move very sloooooowwwwly in the food/bev category when nutrition is involved, unfortunately.

  • Skyeee

    My girls are 6 and 4. Unfortunately, with my first, she got ahold of apple juice…a child’s drug