DIET FOR KIDS

A healthy, balanced diet for children provides essential vitamins, minerals and other nutritional needs of child. Making sure that your kids are getting enough of the good stuff can be a challenge for many parents Vitamins and minerals are vital for our bodies to function properly and each one plays a specific role in the body For example

EXAMPLES

Calcium - is vital for strong, healthy bones and teeth. Good sources of calcium include dairy products (milk, yoghurt and cheese), green leafy vegetables and bony fish.

Vitamin C - supports little immune systems and is also needed to form collagen, which is essential for the development of healthy bones, gums and blood vessels. Good sources of vitamin C include citrus fruits (lemons, limes and grapefruit), strawberries and broccoli.

vitamins B - work together to help the body convert the food we eat into energy and provide the support kids need to stay active. Good sources of B vitamins include whole grains, poultry and eggs.

Iodine - is a mineral required for normal brain development, concentration and learning ability, making it crucial to support young brainiacs. Good sources of iodine include seafood and fortified bread.

Zinc - is needed for normal growth and development in infants and supports healthy immune function in kids. Good sources of zinc include seafood, meat and beans.

If children develop healthy eating habits from the start, it will set them up for a healthier adulthood.

STRATEGIES TO IMPROVE EATING HABITS

1. Have regular family meals.i.e 4-5 meals a day.

2. Serve a variety of healthy foods and snacks.

3. Their food intake will improve if the food is interesting and attractive e.g , chapattis and puris can be made into shapes or can be served in attractive plates.

4. Include lots of fruits , vegetables , salads and fluids to your childs diet.

5. Foods should be slightly seasoned so that they taste better and the child takes it well.

6. Be a role model by eating healthy yourself.

7. Food preferences of the child should be taken into consideration .

8. Regularity of meal times is essentials .

9. The child should never be hurried while taking the food.the atmosphere should be pleasant,peaceful,and lacking distraction .

10. Foods like tea and coffee should be restricted as they overstimulate the system .

11. Inclusion of curd everyday in the diet can decrease the incidence of diarrhea and course of cold.

12. Child should never be forced to eat more than he can take .Avoid battles over food.

13. Involve kids in the process of preparing foods .


FAMILY MEALS
Family meals are a comforting ritual for both parents and kids. Children like the predictability of family meals and parents get a chance to catch up with their kids. Kids who take part in regular family meals are also:

  • more likely to eat fruits, vegetables, and grains

  • less likely to snack on unhealthy foods

  • less likely to smoke, use marijuana, or drink alcohol

Also, family meals are a chance for parents to introduce kids to new foods and to be role models for healthy eating. Teens may turn up their noses at the prospect of a family meal — not surprising because they're busy and want to be more independent. Yet studies find that teens still want their parents' advice and counsel, so use mealtime as a chance to reconnect. You might also try these tips:

  • Allow kids to invite a friend to dinner.

  • Involve your child in meal planning and preparation.

  • Keep mealtime calm and friendly — no lectures or arguing.

What counts as a family meal? Whenever you and your family eat together — whether it's takeout food or a home-cooked meal with all the trimmings. Strive for nutritious food and a time when everyone can be there. This may mean eating dinner a little later to accommodate a teen who's at sports practice. It also can mean setting aside time on the weekends when it may be more convenient to gather as a group, such as for Sunday brunch.


FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
    1. HOW CAN I HELP MY CHILDEREN GET THE VITAMINS THEY NEED ?

    To ensure Kids are getting the Vitamins,Minerals and other Goodies they need,it is imporatant that they eat a wide variety of nutritious foods, from all the different food groups.

    As a general guide, Children should eat lots of Fruits and Vegetables,Wholegrains(such as brownrise,wholegrain bread, and whole meal pasta), beans and lentils,moderate amounts of lean meat,fish, nuts and dairy products(Cheese,Yoghurt,Milk)and only occassional consumtion of chocklates,lollies & biscuits.

    2. HOW CAN I ENCOURAGE MY CHILDREN TO EAT A WIDE RANGE/VARIETY OF FOODS ?

    To encourage kids to eat a wide variety of foods,first and foremost,it is important to be a role model yourself.As parents,we are an important influence to our children and can do many things to help them in developing healthy eating habits for life.Show by example-eat fruits,Vegetables, Wholegrains with meals or as snacks. keep fresh fruits on the bench or table,try new food yourself and carry a bottle of water around.

    You could also get creative in the kitchen and make food fun by cutting it into shapes with cookie cutters,naming a food your child helped create,for eg. "Avas Salad",making funny faces on then plate with fruits and vegetables,making vegetable taste better by serving with dressing or dips like hummus or making your own ice creame from frozen bananas.You could also get kids involved in the food shopping and discuss where fuits,vegetables,meat and grains come from.Let your child make healty food choices themselves.

    3. WHAT CAN I DO IF MY CHILDREN WON'T EAT THE FOODS THEY NEED FOR GROWING BODIES ?

    Sometimes it is just not possible to get kids to eat a wide variety of nutritious foods every day,which is why a good quality children's multivitamin might be beneficial.A good multivitamin for kids with nutrients such as Vitamin B,Calcium,Vitamin C,Iodine & Zinc may top up your child's diet and help fill any nutritional gaps to support growing bodies.