Balanced Diet For Toddlers
Feeding a toddler is not an easy task, especially if your toddler is a picky eater. Many toddlers could be reluctant to try new types of food. However, toddlers are constantly active as well as energetic and they grow at a rapid rate. Therefore, following a proper diet for toddlers, which contains the vital nutrients that help them to grow faster, is very important. A healthy diet for toddlers will contain a proper balance of vitamins and minerals, protein, carbohydrates and fats.
A balanced diet for toddlers should include the following foods:
- Vitamins and minerals: Vitamins A, C, D, iron and calcium should be...
Pregnancy And Baby Care Questions
- ... an essential part of every growing toddler’s diet.The most obvious source of calcium for children is milk. However, children can also get calcium by consuming other foods like cheese, yogurt, dry-fruits, green leafy vegetables, soy products and pulses. Vitamin D is important as it helps the body absorb the calcium. It can be found in sunlight as well as foods like eggs and oily fish. For iron, children should be given green vegetables, dried fruit like raisins and apricots, beans, chickpeas and breakfast cereals. The child’s body may find it difficult to absorb iron and therefore, vitamin C is important, as it helps them absorb it. Therefore, try to serve iron-rich foods, with a glass of fresh orange juice.
- Protein: Toddlers get most of their protein intake from milk, but other sources of protein, like eggs, chicken, turkey, fish, pulses, soy products, dairy products an lentils should be included in their meals too.
- Carbohydrates: Foods like rice, bread, pasta, potatoes and cereals provide energy to children. However, whole-grain varieties of bread and pasta are preferable, as they contain fiber too, which is good for digestion in children.
- Fats: Children require more fats than adults do. However, it is important for them to get their intake of fats from sources like milk, yogurt, meat, fish and cheese. Foods like cookies, pastries and cakes should be avoided.
Healthy Toddler Diet Plan
A healthy toddler diet plan should contain three meals a day, with room for about 2 snacks in between. These snacks should include options such as raw vegetables like cucumber slices and carrot sticks, fresh fruit, cheese, rice cakes, toast or breadsticks along with drinks like milk or juices. While liquids like milk and juice are important, children should not be encouraged to fill up on it. Counting calories for children may be difficult, but while planning the child’s meal, it may help to know that an average toddler requires around 1300 calories a day.