Feeding Your Toddler

It is very important for toddlers to have a healthy and balanced diet as this will provide all the nutrients and vitamins needed for them to grow. There will be days when a child fusses and refuses to eat whatever he/she is served. Here are a few ideas on getting them to eat well.

Tips to Feeding a Toddler

Encouraging:

Offer the child good choices and let them decide how much they will eat. Children will usually eat enough by way of calories and meet their needs.

Regularity:

Ensure that meals and snacks are given at fixed timings and accounting for nap times. A toddler should have 3 regular meals and at the most 2 or 3 snacks. Some of the snacks could be fruit, cheese, yogurt with fruit, half a sandwich, smoothie with fruit and/or milk or even pancakes.

Spacing Meals:

The main meal of the day should be offered when they have been awake and active for a while. If they get up from a nap, a drink or snack would be more appropriate. Meals and snacks should be spaced evenly through the day to prevent the child from getting too hungry.

Interesting Meals:

It is a good idea to present the food in a fun way. Give them a variety of sweet and salty meals so that they eat different foods and get nutrients in. A sampling of sweet foods would look like:

  • fruit salad and yogurt
  • custard with fruit
  • muffin and fruit

Foods For a Toddler

Ensure that foods from the four main groups are included:

  • Starchy foods like cereal, rice and pasta, whole grains and root vegetables.
  • Food with iron and protein like fish, nuts, eggs and lentils.
  • Dairy related products like milk and cheese to ensure a good supply of calcium for their bones.
  • Drinks: Water, milk and fresh fruit juices are the best for kids. Juices should be restricted only to meal times.