While I was chatting with Bobby Flay last week about healthy and quick tips for feeding the kiddo, we also talked a little bit about school lunches and First Lady Michelle Obama's interest in curbing childhood obesity.
Flay mentioned that kids are learning more and more where their food is coming from, which gives them more of an interest in it. (He also mentioned British chef Jamie Oliver, who has a show coming out on ABC that tackles the subject called "Jamie Oliver's Food Revolution.")
That said, we also have to think about what our kids are drinking. While soda is not on CC's diet, she tends to veer more toward juice and milk rather than straight-up water.
So when beverage brand WAT-AAH! approached me about trying out their bottled water, I said I'd give it a shot. After all, who doesn't want their child to drink more H2O?
The beverage itself is just that, water, but it comes in four color-coded bottles: Body, Brain, Bones and Energy. Ingredients are either pure spring water (Body) or ultra-purified water, as well as added oxygen (Energy), electrolytes (Brain) or magnesium (Bones). None of the selections include sugar. That's a no-no.
Creator Rose Cameron founded WAT-AAH! with her young son in 2008, and the brand officially launches on the West Coast in Whole Foods and other organic markets on April 1.
On the WAT-AAH! Web site, Cameron says she noticed how all "kid-friendly" beverages contained sugar and colors to "hide the 'boring taste and unappealing look' of simple, pure water." Her mission: Focus on the marketing.
So she has created a product that is visually appealing to kids, in hopes that they will choose that over sugary drinks. She says on the site that WAT-AAH! is not here to displace water from the tap or the otherwise filtered varieties, but rather to displace soda.
When I opened the package, which contained all four bottles, CC was instantly intrigued.
"What's that, Mommy?" she asked.
She liked the colors and wanted to open each one. I asked her to choose a color, and she picked green first. (Of course, she chose Energy a mere hour before bedtime.) She drank a few sips and put the rest back for later.
Every day, she liked going to the refrigerator and picking out a color. (The bottles are 16.9 oz, so drinking one at a single sitting was not happening.)
"I like that water," she said once we got to the last bottle. A good sign.
Like I said, CC doesn't drink soda, but it's important that she not be somehow turned off by water just because it doesn't look as exciting as the other bottles. That's where Cameron was realistic. Make the packaging fun, and kids will be more attracted to it. But the main thing is to make it pure, drinkable and add elements that kids need for healthy bodies.
While pricier than tap water at $1-$1.50 per bottle, depending on where you get it and how many you buy, it could be a viable option for parents frustrated with how hard it is to get their kids to drink the stuff.
In any case, it's one of many options for keeping the kiddos well-hydrated and a viable option for keeping sugary drinks at bay.
For more info, visit www.drinkwataah.com. The company also offers sponsorship opportunities for school and community events.