Proper nutrition for your child should essentially include 3 meals a day and healthy snacks in between. Besides these, it's also important to ensure your child's daily diet provides a balance of lean meat, fruits and vegetables; plus 3 servings of milk, cheese or yogurt that help meet your child's daily calcium requirements. Healthy and balanced meals will provide the nutrition to help your child grow to his full potential.
The best advice to keep your child healthy includes encouraging him to:
• Eat a variety of foods
• Enjoy a regular physical activity
• Choose a diet with a plenty of grain products, vegetables and fruits
• Choose a diet low in saturated fat
• Choose a diet moderate in sugars and salt
• Choose a diet that provides enough calcium and iron to meet the body's growing needs
Encourage children to eat healthy food
- Involve your children in planning meals, shopping for groceries and preparing food. Then, they might be more interested in eating the food that they've helped to prepare.
Simple, no-cooking recipes like frozen yogurt popsicles or fruit salads are an excellent way to get young chefs interested in healthy cooking and eating.
- Teach children where their food comes from. Rather than limiting yourself to the weekly supermarket run, engage them in planting tomatoes or cucumbers in the garden. It will make them eager to taste the fruit of their own labour.
- If you stock the kitchen exclusively with healthy treats, your children will be always eating healthy snacks. To encourage them further, store good snacks in cabinets and shelves that they can reach without your help. 4 Children like to have choices so consider packing an insulated lunch bag full of healthy snacks so they can make their own smart choices during school breaks.
- Remember that children are encouraged to eat five servings of fruits and vegetables a day including fruit drinks. Smoothies and mixed fruit drinks can be a fun way to introduce new fruits.
- Children need coaxing and many exposures before they will try new foods. Though exposing your child to the same food five nights in a row may not win him over, you should not give up just because he rejects it the first time.
- Use meal and snack times as teachable moments to help even the youngest children make wise food choices.