A balanced diet with variety and lots of physical activity will help your toddler to grow up healthy. But as you can imagine it’s much easier said than done.
The majority of toddlers go through the fussy eating phase as they get older and start developing opinions. But don’t worry, there is still plenty to do that will encourage healthy eating habits. Here are 6 ideas to help your toddler grow up healthy:
Let them eat with family
Make sure eating is a big occasion around the table with the whole family. Your toddler seeing you all eat will encourage them to do the same! If you’re just getting into the solid food stage and want them to be at the table with everyone, weaning bibs are a convenient way to ensure a quick clean occurs after your toddler is done eating (and most likely playing) with their food.
Let them decide how much to eat
As long as you’re giving them nutritional foods, let them take control during the weaning process. It takes the pressure off them and they can take their time and eat as they become hungry. Give them around 30 minutes to examine and explore the food, if anything is still there after this, they’re probably not likely to be wanting to eat anymore.
Give your toddler the four main food groups everyday
As a guide be sure to feed your toddler the four main food group everyday, which are:
- Fruits and vegetables.
- Starch based foods – cereal, bread, porridge and pasta.
- Dairy – milk, cheeses and yoghurt.
- Protein – meat, fish, eggs and beans.
Create a routine for meals
Consistency is key so offering your child three meals a day along with two or three nutritious snacks. This will keep them energised all day.
Use vitamins A, C and D supplements each day
It’s recommended that children should take a vitamin supplement between the ages of six months and five years. Their current nutrition means they shouldn’t require multivitamin. However these vitamins they take should contain A, C and D. It’s essential you find a supplement that is suitable for their ages as different brands can be for different ages.
Be Understanding to your toddler’s tastes
Depending on how lucky you are, some toddlers are great with different foods and others are very fussy. But the key is to avoid getting angry or impatient, offer positive encouragement and if they refuse try mixing the food in with what they like, or remove the plate and offer it to them later.