As babies grow, their nutritional needs change. As toddlers or young children, they need the same types of food from the five food groups that adults need:
- Dairy and related foods.
Tips for encouraging your child to become a healthy eater:
- Make meals about more than eating. Use this time to teach and spend time with your child.
- Make a mealtime and snack routine, which can help prevent children from acting out when they are hungry and help them transition from other activities.
- Offer 3-4 healthy choices at each meal.
- Do not force your child to eat.
- Offer healthy snacks, such as fruits and vegetables.
- Use children’s creativity to help them learn to love healthy foods. Arrange healthy foods in interesting shapes (like faces). Make up fun names for healthy snacks.
- Limit juice to 4 oz (or one small cup) per day. Juice is considered empty calories, and there are healthier options for your child.
- Allow babies and toddlers to leave the table when they are done eating.
- With patience, continue to introduce each new food up to 15 times, even if your child does not like it the first time.