Read This Before Letting Your Kids Drink Eggnog

Few things are as closely tied to Christmas festivities as much as a freshly prepared mug of hot eggnog. Made with a combination of eggs, milk, cream, sherry, rum, and more, it's a classic drink that's been around for a really long time (via the Mental Floss). If you're wondering how long, experts think it was way back in the 14th century when people relished a hot drink that was made with spices, milk, and wine. Interestingly, it was more than a comforting beverage and was even used to treat cold and flu symptoms.

As delicious as eggnog can be, caution must be exercised when it comes to consuming it. For example, a man named Ryan Roche once ended up at the hospital after he had far too much alcohol-free eggnog in a bid to beat his peers in a contest. Doctors figured out that their patient had ended up inhaling a bit of the eggnog and needed antibiotics to recover. Even if you don't plan on engaging in competitive eggnog guzzling, if you're thinking of preparing a batch of eggnog for your family, you may want to be extra careful when there are kids involved. Read on for more details.

Avoid underage eggnog drinking

As highlighted by Fatherly, babies younger than one shouldn't come anywhere near eggnog and should be given formula milk or breast milk. When given cow's milk that young, they can suffer intestinal bleeding. As for older kids, even if you choose an alcohol-free, dairy-free recipe, you may find that the raw eggs make your kids sick. Another factor worth considering is the sheer amount of sugar that may be hiding in your Christmas treat. 

Pediatric dietician Melanie Silverman told Fatherly that it's crucial to be mindful while introducing kids to eggnog. The golden rule applies – everything in moderation. "According to the American Heart Association, kids ages 2-18 should have less than 6 teaspoons of added sugar per day," Silverman explained. "Eggnog has a good amount of sugar in the drink that could bump a kid's intake for the day." Perhaps you could opt for a healthier alternative that isn't too high on sugar such as a hot chocolate with unsweetened cocoa, honey, and plant-based milk.