General healthy nutrition guidelines for toddlers and young children
- Posted on May 12, 2017
- Meals should start within 15 minutes and for a toddler be done within 25 minutes-if not remove the food.
- Allow an interval of 2-3 hours with no eating (except water) to help promote a healthy hunger/feed cycle
- Do not try to compensate “poor intake” with snacks and Cheerios
- Don’t focus/worry about the last feeding. Focus on the next feeding!
- Healthy toddlers should be allowed three meals and two snacks with nothing in between.
- Systematically introduce new foods-don’t push them but have them on the plate-generally starting with a helping about the size of the toddler’s fist.
- Separate foods on their plate since young children often don’t like foods touching one another.
- Emphasize anchor foods that are whole and nutrient dense instead of processed and fast foods.
- Assure foods with adequate protein and veggies and don’t forget the water.
-Leigh Gistinger, CPNP