Child Nutrition Information for Parents

Child Nutrition: Fruits and Vegetables

Child Nutrition and Natural Children’s Vitamins

Good child nutrition is vital to good health and is absolutely essential for the healthy growth and development of children and adolescents.

Careful food choices not only help ensure physical nourishment of a child's growing body, it can also nourish your child's social, emotional, and psychological development.

Proper nutrition can also prevent many medical problems, including becoming overweight, developing weak bones, and developing diabetes.

Is Your Child Eating Right?

Child Nutrition Six Basic Food Groups

Good child nutrition begins at home with a balanced diet. A balanced diet includes foods from each food group on the Food Guide Pyramid.

1. Breads, cereals, rice and pasta or grains

2. Fruits

3. Vegetables

4. Milk, yogurt, cheese

5. Meat, poultry, fish, dried beans, egg and nuts

6. Fat and sweets group in moderation.

The Children's Food Pyramid is based on the USDA's research on the best food choices to promote good health. Parents can use it as a general guide in choosing a healthful diet that is right for their children.

MyPyramid.gov is still triangle-shaped but it has six colored, vertical stripes to represent food categories: Orange for grains, green for vegetables, red for fruits, yellow for oils, blue for dairy products and purple for meats, beans, fish and nuts.

On the side of the pyramid, there is a figure climbing steps which emphasizes exercise. The new guidelines suggest that kids eat more fruits, vegetables, and whole grains and that children and teenagers should be physically active for 60 minutes every day, or most days.

The new MyPyramid.gov site lets parents key in their child's age, gender and physical activity level so that they can get a more personalized recommendation on their daily calorie level, based on the 2005 Dietary Guidelines for Americans.

The USDA provides the following healthful child nutrition tips for parents on ways they can help to meet these new food guidelines:

  • Set a good example for children by eating whole grains, vegetables, and fruit with meals or as snacks …great way to promote good child nutrition!
  • Let children do the following: Select and help prepare a whole grain side dish; decide on the dinner vegetables or what goes in salad; choose what fruits they eat with lunch.
  • Depending on their age, have children help shop for, clean, peel, or cut up vegetables and fruits.
  • Allow children to pick a new fruit or vegetable to try while shopping.
  • Add fat-free or low-fat milk instead of water to oatmeal and hot cereal.
  • Pack a juice box (100% juice) in children's lunches versus soda or other sugar-sweetened beverages.
  • Make a dip for fruits or vegetables from yogurt.
  • Top casseroles, soups, stews, or vegetables with shredded low-fat cheese.
  • Try a baked potato with fat-free or low-fat yogurt.
  • For dessert, make chocolate or butterscotch pudding with fat-free or low-fat milk.
  • Make fruit kabobs using pineapple chunks, bananas, grapes, and berries.
  • Offer raisins or other dried fruits instead of candy.

    Below are some good suggestions for "snack attacks!"

    Another way to promote good child nutrition is to be "armed" with nutritional snack ideas. Below are a few examples:

  • Baked potato chips or tortilla chips with salsa
  • Pretzels (lightly salted or unsalted)
  • Bagels with tomato sauce and lowfat cheese
  • Flavored rice cakes (like caramel or apple cinnamon)
  • Popcorn-air popped or lowfat microwave
  • Veggies with lowfat or fat-free dip
  • Lowfat cottage cheese topped with fruit or spread on whole-wheat crackers
  • Ice milk, lowfat frozen or regular yogurt (add skim milk, orange or pineapple juice, and sliced bananas or strawberries to make a lowfat milk shake
  • Frozen fruit bars
  • Vanilla wafers, gingersnaps, graham crackers, animal crackers, fig bars, raisins
  • Angel food cake topped with strawberries or raspberries and lowfat whipped cream
  • String cheese

    How can Parents achieve Good Child Nutrition with "Picky Eaters?"

    Healthful Tips

    Relax, be patient, and get educated with practical solutions for handling the "ups and downs" of your child's feeding. Listed below are a few ideas:

  • Have your child help during meal times. For example, they can set the table and help you mix foods.
  • Children tend to eat more if they are allowed to eat on their own.
  • Make foods interesting by cutting them into different shapes. Expose children to a variety of foods often. Verbally praise children for trying new foods and eating well.
  • Explore child nutrition books, many have helpful suggestions.
  • New foods should be introduced gradually, about one a week, and children may need to be exposed to new foods many times before accepting them.
  • A little bit of the new food served alongside familiar foods over a period of time helps children become comfortable with the new food.
  • Trust your child's appetite. Forcing children to eat can start a lifelong habit of overeating.
  • If your child won't eat certain foods, perhaps spinach, don't worry. Just offer a similar food-group food like broccoli or carrots.
  • Involve kids. Sometimes picky eaters eat foods they helped plan, buy, or make.
  • Offer choices, but not too many, rather than asking open-ended questions such as "What do you want to eat?"
  • Grow a vegetable garden. Let your child help you to water the plants.

    Should good child nutrition include a multivitamin supplement?

    How do I know if my child is getting all the nutrients she or he needs?

    Although most parents strive to provide their children with well-balanced diets that incorporate the right amounts of food from all major food groups, the reality is that good child nutrition for optimal wellness often needs to be supplemented to ensure a healthy lifestyle and body.

    Even the American Academy of Pediatrics recommends a daily multivitamin for children with poor appetites, erratic eating habits or special nutritional needs.

    In fact, many pediatricians and nutritionists advise that the majority of their young patients take a multivitamin as part of their daily dietary routine.

    "Children can be finicky eaters – that is often an unavoidable part of growing up. But even the best eaters often don’t consume the necessary amounts of recommended vitamins and minerals," said Diane Barsky, M.D. "As a pediatrician and the mother of two young children, I understand that a daily multivitamin is critical to ensuring that children get the correct amounts of essential nutrients to help support their proper growth and development."

    About All Natural Children's Vitamins

    Good child nutrition through the power of knowledge!

    All parents want what's best for their child and strive for good child nutrition by purchasing an "all natural children's vitamin or multivitamin." But, before purchasing that next bottle there are some facts you need to know.

    First, it's better to give your child a multivitamin and mineral supplement than just a vitamin supplement. Vitamins and minerals work together as a team synergistically.

    Second, dietary supplements are not strictly regulated and, as such, manufacturers of natural health products do not have to guarantee the safety, effectiveness, or even the true content of their products.

    Although supplements should be labeled properly, many aren't, so what's stated on the label may not be in the container. The potency or purity may be inconsistent or misrepresented. Some products tested also contained very harmful contaminates.

    Oftentimes consumers are led to believe that the term "natural" or "organic" means wholesomeness, which makes them safe. Also, some products marketed as "natural" do not contain 100% all natural ingredients.

    Here's the bottom line ---

    Many nutritional supplement companies are more concerned about their bottom-line dollars than your child's health. Indeed, isn't natural health supplements suppose to improve "child nutrition" not impair it?

    How To Choose A Quality Natural Children’s Vitamin (Multivitamin)

    Enhancing child nutrition….

  • Ensure that the company follows pharmaceutical GMP compliance, which is among the most rigorous manufacturing standards possible.
  • Contact the company and ask if they have a certificate of analysis on file, confirming the potency of each batch. Avoid companies that do not provide you with this information.
  • Check the expiration date on the bottle. Reliable companies all list them.
  • Check to see how long the company has been in operation. The longer the better -their less apt to take risks and ruin their reputation.
  • Child nutrition and supplements is complex - or should we say nutritional biochemistry is complex. Does the company provide you with any information about their science team? Look for natural health supplements that is created by someone who is qualified to create a supplement with ingredients that work in balance and synergistically to offer the maximum results.
  • Understand that "natural" is not synonymous with "safe."
  • Take time to read the label carefully, and do not hesitate to ask the manufacturer for additional information and any tests they may have conducted.
  • What are the procedures used to test for purity, potency, and effectiveness. Take time to review it.
  • Are there any clinical studies on ingredients being used?
  • Does the company provide you with a strong money back guarantee? How long is it for?

    Featured Product

    Enhance child nutrition with this nutrition-packed supplement ..

    If you're looking for the best health 'insurance' you can give your child, we highly recommend a product called Total Balance for Children from Xtend-Life Natural Products.

    In fact, Total Balance for Children is a highly sophisticated all-in-one supplement, containing a full spectrum of over 80 specialized nutrients including vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, amino acids, specialty nutrients, herbal extracts, and enzymes that your child needs for optimium 'whole' body health.

    All of the ingredients are scientifically combined in a synergistic way to enhance and maximize the efficacy of each other.

    Total Balance for Children is formulated by a highly credentialed scientific team that can blend these ingredients perfectly to ensure maximum benefits, but as importantly that they do not interact adversely. Plus, Total Balance for Children is enteric coated to protect all of these ingredients against stomach acids and to ensure maximum bio-availability

    Xtend-Life also uses only standardized herbal extracts, the purest herbal extracts with the highest quality and therapeutic benefits, and they adhere to strict pharmaceutical GMP compliance, which is the toughest in the industry.

    Lastly, all the ingredients in Xtend-Life Natural Products are supported with a Certificate of Analysis (COA) and, in addition, the company does a series of crosschecks before purchasing any raw ingredients that guarantees their potency and safety.

    We here at Nutritional-Supplement-Educational-Centre have been taking the adult version of Total Balance for several years now and can personally attest to its excellent results such as an increase in energy levels, mental clarity, and an increase feeling of well-being.

    To You and Your Child's Health!

    The Editors


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