Young children grow and learn very fast. That is why they need nourishing food and plenty of water in order to be full of energy. It is important to make them eat a wide variety of foods that will provide their body with proteins, carbohydrates, fats, vitamins and minerals. In this way we will improve their concentration and energy level. A healthy diet from an early age can prevent anemia, cancer, heart diseases, diabetes, osteoporosis and dental problems.
Children’s diet should include proteins that are needed for the growth of the human body:
- iron and calcium for the blood and the bones
- plenty of water and fats for the growth of the cells
- vitamin D for healthy bones
- zinc and magnesium for a strong immune system
Encourage children to eat fruits, vegetables, meat, bread and grains, potatoes, milk and diary products, fish, eggs, soya and beans.
High fat or carbohydrate foods should be consumed in moderation and should not be avoided completely from a child’s diet.
Following are some advices that will make it easy for you to improve your child’s diet:
- Regular breakfast and schedule meals. Children should eat at least every 3 to 4 hours. Most children eat snacks 3 times a day. It would be good if you sit at the table with your children during mealtime as often as possible. Offer them more fruits for the breakfast. Pay attention to the quantity of food they eat. In most of the cases the child decides alone how much to eat.
- Gradually limit the consumption of soft drinks that are full of sugar. Make children drink water when they are thirsty.
- Serve your children milk during mealtime ( Be aware that babies under 12 months old should not drink cow’s milk! ). Children between 1 and 2 years old can drink full-fat milk when their body needs it. Your pediatrician may recommend 2% milk reduced fat if your child is overweight or is at risk of hereditary diseases such as high blood pressure and heart diseases.
- Try to offer your child new food as well as one that he or she likes.
Be an example for your children! They will be tempted to try everything that you eat. You can teach your grown up children how to cook, how to go shopping and how to pay attention to the labels.