I started drinking tea at a very young age, probably 4 or younger, compliments of my Grandma. She would sit down for a cup, and of course, I wanted to be just like her, so she would make me a cup too. I'm sure initially, it was a very weak cup of black tea with a bit of milk and possibly sugar added. I truly don't remember exactly, but I was drinking black tea without any milk or sugar when I hit my teenage years. I laughingly called this "naked tea."
Since I only drink tea, no coffee, when I had my three kids, they were all drinking tea with me at a very young age, just like I did when I was little. They now love tea of all varieties, served both hot or iced!
Earlier this month, when I was visiting with my two-and-a-half-year-old grandson (haha, I can't really be old enough to have grandchildren), he was sharing my iced tea. It was my Decaf Peach Black Tea with no sugar, and he was guzzling it. Over the week, I also made him Grandma's Garden Fruit Tea and Orange Creamsicle Rooibos which he also loved. These two teas are naturally decaffeinated, which his mom liked.
These two teas plus Strawberry Cream Fruit Tea are three of the teas I most commonly recommend in my store for moms looking for teas for their kids with no caffeine. I also have great fruit-flavored black and green teas in both regular and decaf. I know my kids enjoyed trying different types, black, green, white and rooibos, and herbal teas, and I bet your's will too.
I found this great article on children drinking tea and thought you might enjoy it. Here are the main points.
Children Benefit from Drinking Tea - By Dan Bolton
An extensive review of medical research - commissioned by the Tea Advisory Panel in the UK - suggests that children as early as age 4 benefit from drinking tea. In a peer-reviewed paper published in the Nutrition and Food Technology journal, lead researcher Dr. Pamela Mason identified 60 scientific studies that examined the health benefits of drinking tea from childhood.
Dr. Mason found in those studies that "benefits for health and wellbeing are seen at daily intakes of two to four cups - and it doesn't matter whether you choose regular black tea or green tea." Drinking tea daily seems to be associated with improved cardiovascular health and a stronger immune system. Tea also helps combat obesity and stress, aids relaxation, influences brain functions, such as alertness and concentration, and is an ideal replacement for sugary drinks.
According to Dr. Mason, drinking tea daily "could help preserve physical and mental health in childhood, through the teens and adulthood, pregnancy and into old age."