Applebee’s and IHOP are following other major fast food chains and are giving soda the heave ho on kids' menus.

McDonald’s, Burger King, Wendy’s and Dairy Queen have instituted similar changes and comes amid a push by food chains to meet customer demand by providing healthier menu offerings.

Applebee's and IHOP — owned by the same parent company, DineEquity —are the first casual-dining restaurants to adopt this plan.

Soft drinks will still be available upon request for adults who choose to order them for their children, but the move to nix the disease-causing beverages drew quick praise.

“Soda and other sugar drinks promote diabetes, obesity, tooth decay and even heart disease, and a kids’ menu is no place for disease-promoting drinks,” said Jessica Almy, from the nutrition policy counsel for the Center for Science in the Public Interest, which tracks these types of moves. “Kudos to Applebee’s for taking this important step to promote children’s health. Other sit-down chains such as Chili’s should follow Applebee’s lead.”

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