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How to Make Homemade Pedialyte

It’s Saturday night and I’m nursing a feverish boy who has been struggling with a particularly nasty flu all week. He’s got the coughs and sniffles and all the classic symptoms, but is also completely lacking an appetite. Although I’ve been trying to get him to drink more fluids, I’m not convinced he’s getting enough. Worried about his increased lethargy and chapped lips, I called my sister, a mom of three who told me to make some Pedialyte. I had no idea you could do such a thing.

Pediatricians often recommend the electrolyte solution Pedialyte for kids who are sick, running a fever, have diarrhea or are vomiting to prevent dehydration. It can be a bit pricey, and often inconvenient to run to the store when you have a sick child at home. So I looked up how to make the stuff, and it’s a simple combination of water, sugar, baking soda and salt – all ingredients I have on hand. Most recipes call for a bit of Kool-Aid powder, just to make it palatable to a kid, but since I don’t generally have Kool-Aid and wasn’t about to go out in a blizzard to buy some (and don’t like the idea of the added colour, either), I used apple juice instead. It worked like a charm.

I have no idea who to credit this formula to, as I found dozens of the same (or slightly different) versions all over the internet. Mostly, the variation is in the quantity of sugar – I kept it low, and of course you could swap honey. Or try just using apple juice, like I did. Either of these can be given as a drink or frozen into popsicles.

Homemade Pedialyte

4 cups (1 L) water
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1 Tbsp. sugar
1/4 tsp. salt
1/2 pkg unsweetened Kool-Aid (for flavour)

Stir everything together in a pitcher until the sugar and soda are dissolved, and store in the fridge for up to 4 days.

Apple Juice Pedialyte

2 cups apple juice
2 cups water
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/4 tsp. salt

Stir everything together in a pitcher until the sugar and soda are dissolved, and store in the fridge for up to 4 days.

For more recipes, check out Julie’s award-winning blog, Dinner with Julie!
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