Encouraging children to eat a nutritious, balanced diet early on is important for a number of reasons. Ensuring they get the right vitamins and minerals in their diet will help them grow and develop optimally. They are also more likely to be energised and motivated, supporting their ability to learn. Educating them on healthy eating during childhood will also help them make healthier choices as they become adults.
Despite the obvious benefits, we recognise that there can be challenges when it comes to healthy eating for kids. We recently surveyed 1,000 parents to find out what sort of challenges they face. The results included fussy eaters, cost of healthy food and convenience/time restraints. On this page we will look at what healthy eating for kids means in practice, what your child needs and how to encourage fussy eaters to eat a more varied diet.
What does eating healthy mean for your child?
The term ‘healthy eating’ is very broad and encompasses a range of areas, including the following:
- enjoying a varied diet
- having a healthy relationship with food
- following the Eatwell Guide
- encouraging appropriate portion sizes.
Enjoying a varied diet
All foods contain different nutrients, vitamins and minerals. In order to get all the nutrients they need, it is important for children to have a varied diet containing lots of different foods. Aim for three balanced meals a day and up to two healthy snacks. Use different protein sources in each meal and different varieties of vegetables.