The importance of giving your child the right nutrition while they’re growing up cannot be emphasised enough. How well your child is fed can determine many things – immunity, resistance to allergies and infections, ability to fight bacteria and diseases, and grow into strong, healthy adults. The human body typically requires a balanced diet consisting of vitamins, minerals, proteins, carbohydrates, fats, fibres and water. This is essential to keep in mind when planning your child’s meals.
In the first few months after your baby is born, it is best to feed her breast milk. Mother’s milk consists of all the nutrients that your baby needs. According to the National Health Service, UK, breast milk adapts as your baby grows to meet her changing needs.
It’s important to remember that ensuring your child is healthy does not just include diet, but also an adequate amount of physical activity, as well as dental care!
THE ‘EAT-WELL PLATE’
One of the hardest things parents face is which school of thought to follow. While there is umpteen advise out there, we’ve found this one to be the most holistic. The Department of Health under the government of the United Kingdom recommends the ‘Eat-well Plate’ which is a pictorial representation of food groups and recommended portions for a healthy diet.
The Harvard School of Public Health has come up with an easy-to-follow depiction for children’s plates. Now it’s no secret that children can be fussy when it comes to eating vegetables or lentils, so employ tricks like colourful presentations, interesting games or story-telling methods to get kids to eat the right things. We’ll discuss more fun tips in future posts!
Fill their plates with fresh fruits, fresh vegetables, healthy proteins (like beans, nuts, lentils, eggs, fish and poultry), healthy oils (peanut, olive, canola), dairy (unsweetened milk, cheese, yogurt), and whole grains (brown rice, whole wheat).
Water is another absolute essential part of nutrition, and you should limit the intake of carbonate drinks, sweetened beverages and juices. Other things to limit include red meat (like beef) and processed carbohydrates (like pasta, white bread or white rice).