The correct infant food during the first years of life can have a positive effect on your health as well as your ability to learn, communicate with others, think and rationalize, socialize, adapt to new environments and people and, above all, your school performance. A good diet can greatly influence your future.
Tips for Healthy Child Nutrition
Child nutrition is the necessary basis for a good physical, psychic and social development of children. Therefore, a healthy diet is important for optimal growth. It is advisable not to abuse vegetable fats and to eat at least five times a day fruit and vegetables . Good nutrition is the first line of defense against countless childhood diseases that can leave traces in children for life.
Good nutrition and good health are directly connected throughout life, but the connection is even more vital during childhood. During this period, children can acquire good eating habits when it comes to the variety of foods and the taste of meals. By clicking here you will find important information about the food introduction.
The effects of malnutrition in early childhood (0 to 8 years) can be devastating and lasting. They can impede intellectual development, school performance and weaken children’s health .
Check out the 10 steps
1.Offer varied food, distributing between meals. Do not skip meals. It is important that the child eats slowly, because in this way it chews the food well, appreciates the meal better and satisfies its hunger. Prefer healthy foods typical of the region.
2. Include daily foods such as cereals (rice, corn), tubers (potatoes), roots (cassava, cassava, manioc), breads and pasta, distributing these foods in the child’s meals and snacks throughout the day. Give preference to whole foods and in the most natural form.
3. Offer vegetables and legumes at the two main meals of the day; also offer, daily, two fruits at desserts and snacks. All these foods are sources of vitamins and minerals, which help in the prevention of diseases and improve the body’s resistance. By varying the types of fruits, vegetables and greens offered, a colorful and tasty dish is guaranteed.
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4. Offer beans with rice every day or at least five times a week. This combination is very good for your health. Right after the meal, offer half a glass of natural fruit juice or half a fruit, which is a source of vitamin C, such as orange, lemon, acerola, cashew and others, to improve the use of iron by the body. This combination helps prevent anemia.
5. Offer milk or dairy products (cheese and yogurt) three times a day. These foods are good sources of protein and calcium and help the health of bones, teeth and muscles. If the child is still being breastfed, it is not necessary to offer another milk. Meat, poultry, fish or eggs should be part of the child’s main meal. In addition to meat, offer the child viscera and offal (liver, gizzard), which are also sources of iron, at least once a week.
6. Avoid greasy and fried food; prefer baked, grilled or boiled food. Remove visible fat from meat and poultry skin before preparation to make these foods healthier. Eating too much fat is bad for your health and can cause obesity.
7. Avoid offering soft drinks and industrialized juices or food with a lot of sugar (candies, chocolates, sweet and stuffed biscuits), snacks and other treats in everyday life. A diet with lots of sugar and sweets can increase the risk of obesity and caries in children.
8. Decrease the amount of salt in food. Avoid ready-made spices, canned food, salted meats and sausages, such as mortadella, ham, hamburger, sausage, sausage and others, because these foods have too much salt. It is important for the child to get used to less salty foods from an early age. Too much salt can increase the blood pressure. Use spices, such as green smell, garlic, onions and fresh and dried herbs, or fruit juice, such as lemon, to season and enhance the natural taste of food.
9. Encourage the child to drink at least four glasses of water during the day, preferably during meal breaks, to maintain hydration and body health. Always use treated, boiled or filtered water to drink and prepare meals and drinks. Natural fruit juice is also a healthy drink, but try to offer it after the main meals. Also remember that juice is not a substitute for water.
10. In addition to nutrition, regular physical activity is important for maintaining weight and a healthy life. Activities such as walking, biking, walking the dog, playing ball, jumping rope, playing hide-and-seek and catch, and preventing the child from spending more than two hours a day watching TV, playing video games or playing on the computer, contribute to making him/her more active. Active children are healthy children.
Source: Ministry of Health
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