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DUE TO HIGH VOLUME OF COVID-19 SUPPLIES, ORDERS MIGHT BE DELAYED 2 TO 4 DAYS
DUE TO HIGH VOLUME OF COVID-19 SUPPLIES, ORDERS MIGHT BE DELAYED 2 TO 4 DAYS
National Nutrition Month: Children's Nutrition

National Nutrition Month: Children's Nutrition

Many families are stuck at home, with school canceled for the foreseeable future, and we're all getting a reminder of just how much of a child's dietary needs are met by school lunches. Children have specific nutritional requirements in order to support their growth and development, and these are guidelines all parents should know.

Healthy Food Nutrition

Guidelines for Healthy Eating

The American Heart Association has made a number of recommendations on proper dietary habits for a family with children. Among them:

  • Moderation: Eat only enough calories to maintain a healthy weight for your height and build, weighted for your level of physical activity.
    Know what to avoid:
    Eat foods low in saturated fat, trans fat, sodium, cholesterol, and added sugars.
  • Variety: Offer a variety of foods that will provide nutrients.
  • Consistency: Regularly introduce healthy foods and keep encouraging your children to eat them. Don't resort to foods without nutritional value just to meet a minimum caloric need.
  • Don't overfeed.

 Healthy Foods Fruits Vegetables

Types of Food and Nutrients

Whole Grain: Always choose whole-grain and high-fiber breads and cereals, and avoid refined grain products. At least half of your grain servings should be whole grain, and look for the words "whole grain" as the first ingredient on the food label.

Dairy: Opt for fat-free and low-fat dairy foods.

Fruits and Vegetables: Serve a variety of these while limiting juices. Make sure each meal includes at least one fruit or vegetable.

Meat: Incorporate fish as a regular entrée, but avoid commercially fried fish products like fish sticks.

Fats: Most fats should come from sources of polyunsaturated and monounsaturated fatty acids, such as fish, nuts, and vegetable oils.

Healthy Eating Heart

The Numbers

So what do your kids need, and in what amount? Read on.

Calories: Measured in kilocalories per day (kcal/d), these estimates are based on a sedentary lifestyle. Increase by 0 to 200 kcal/d for moderate physical activity and 200 to 400 kcal/d for significant physical actvity.

  • 1 year: 900 kcal/d
  • 2 to 3 years: 1000 kcal/d
  • 4 to 8 years, female: 1200 kcal/d
  • 4 to 8 years, male: 1400 kcal/d
  • 9 to 13 years, female: 1600 kcal/d
  • 9 to 13 years, male: 1800 kcal/d
  • 14 to 18 years, female: 1800 kcal/d
  • 14 to 18 years, male: 2200 kcal/d

Fat: Total fat intake is judged by percentage of your caloric intake. Children 2 to 3 years of age should get between 30 to 35 percent of their calories from fat; children 4 to 18 should get 25 to 35 percent of their calories from fat.

Dairy: Calculations are based on cups of 2% milk.

  • 1 year: 2 cups
  • 2 to 3 years: 2 cups
  • 4 to 8 years: 2 cups
  • 9 to 13 years: 3 cups
  • 14 to 18 years: 3 cups

Fruits:

  • 1 year: 1 cup
  • 2 to 3 years: 1 cups
  • 4 to 8 years: 1.5 cups
  • 9 to 13 years: 1.5 cups
  • 14 to 18 years, female: 1.5 cups
  • 14 to 18 years, male: 2 cups

Vegetables:

  • 1 year: 3/4 cup
  • 2 to 3 years: 1 cup
  • 4 to 8 years, female: 1 cup
  • 4 to 8 years, male: 1.5 cup
  • 9 to 13 years, female: 2 cups
  • 9 to 13 years, male: 2.5 cups
  • 14 to 18 years, female: 2. 5 cups
  • 14 to 18 years, male: 3 cups

Grains:

  • 1 year: 2 ounces
  • 2 to 3 years: 3 ounces
  • 4 to 8 years, female: 4 ounces
  • 4 to 8 years, male: 5 ounces
  • 9 to 13 years, female: 5 ounces
  • 9 to 13 years, male: 6 ounces
  • 14 to 18 years, female: 6 ounces
  • 14 to 18 years, male: 7 ounces

Lean Proteins (Lean meats and beans):

  • 1 year: 1.5 ounces
  • 2 to 3 years: 2 ounces
  • 4 to 8 years, female: 3 ounces
  • 4 to 8 years, male: 4 ounces
  • 9 to 13 years: 5 ounces
  • 14 to 18 years, female: 5 ounces
  • 14 to 18 years, male: 6 ounces
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