August 16, 2017

The toddler years are a critical time when children are building life-long healthy eating practices.

So it’s important to provide them with a wide variety of nutritious foods from all five food groups, which are essential for their bodies as they grow and develop.

A toddler’s stomach is only small and fills quickly so it’s best to feed your little one small, frequent, nutrient-dense meals made up of a variety of foods from the different food groups – vegetables & legumes, fruit, whole grains, lean meat, eggs, nuts & seeds, as well as dairy.

Making healthy family meals and creating a positive environment around eating will encourage healthy eating habits where choosing a variety of foods from all five food groups becomes second nature for you and your child.

It helps to set regular meal times and provide a wide range of tastes and textures so that time spent around food is an enjoyable, positive experience for all. For example, beginning the day with a wholesome breakfast provides toddlers with the energy to grow, play and learn. They tend to be hungrier and are less tired or distracted than later in the day so more likely to enjoy eating a good breakfast.

Breakfast time is also a good opportunity to increase fibre and calcium intakes. Aim to include foods from at least three food groups for breakfast. Whole grain cereals topped with fruit and probiotic yoghourt such as Jalna is a great example of a healthy breakfast for the whole family.

A few helpful tips include:

  1. Variety is key – try to include a variety of food from the five key food groups.
  2. Limit foods containing saturated fat and added salt and sugar.
  3. Offer small healthy snacks in between meals.
  4. All drinks should be offered to toddlers after their meal to prevent filling up on fluids.
  5. Breakfast is a great time to ensure your child gets a range of whole foods as they often have a good appetite compared to other times of the day.

These toddler tips are complemented by Jalna’s recent launch of its very own A2 Protein Whole Milk Natural Yoghourt based on A2 milk from local Victorian dairy farmers, available in Woolworths, Coles and independent grocers nationally.

Jalna also recommends Jalna Greek, BioDynamic Organic and Premium Blend Natural Pot Set Yoghourt for toddlers.

Karen Inge, ASD

 

 

Jalna’s Nourish section is packed full of great information about keeping your family healthy and active. You might like to read some extra information from their nutrition adviser, Karen Inge.

 

From time to time, Mouths of Mums brings you content sponsored by our partners. Right now, we are partnered with Jalna to bring you this awesome article, letting you know the importance of having the right probiotics in your diet. 

 

Need some inspiration to get your toddlers trying a range of new foods? These Jalna recipes (with videos) are a great start:

Jalna Trio of Dips

Jalna Mini Sweet Potato and Feta Frittatas

Jalna Chia Pikelets


  • Great ideas to know

    Reply


  • make food fun with different shapes also! let them help you prepare it a little and get them involved in making the experience fun so that they will be willing to try new foods

    Reply


  • Great ideas here, thanks for sharing

    Reply


  • It’s not just the 5 food groups which are important. It’s the healthy choices within them that are important. I started eating raw vegetables from an early age and whilst I do enjoy sweets occasionally, I’d rather munch on a nice plate of salad etc than have a slice of cake. Similarly I prefer savoury biscuits and muffins to sweet ones. I think it is important to try to educate kids’ palates to a wide range of foods early. Even if they go off the rails in their teens, they often rediscover good food as they get older.

    Reply


  • Thanks for sharing. Important to tick off the 5 key food groups indeed.

    Reply


  • Thank you for sharing your ideas.

    Reply


  • My kids eat very well but they went from everything as little ones to being fussy now.

    Reply


  • I 100% agree with lots of snacks throughout the day.

    Reply


  • I loved the toddler years when I was able to shape what my son ate. He was a great eater and then his tastes changed and foods he loved he would then hate. It’s an ongoing process, but all you can do is put the best food forward.

    Reply


  • Consistency is also an important part in eating healthily.

    Reply


  • It is quite easy to get enough sugar from the fruit and vegetables we eat. There is a few vegetables that naturally have salt and / or sugar in them.

    Reply


  • And do make sure they get sufficient calcium from milk, yoghurt etc. What they lay down calcium wise upt till the age of 15 is what will stand them in good stead against osteoporosis later in life.

    Reply


  • my toddlers always eat everything in sight, my now teenagers are fussy but started the same, ate anything put in front of them

    Reply


  • My toddler is a little eating machine and I sure think a healthy diet is important. I don’t just offer her water after her meal to prevent filling up on fluids !

    Reply


  • I have a toddler delighted to eat gerkins and blue cheese and mustard… but not at all keen on bland or simple foods. She really likes strong flavours.

    Reply

Post a comment
Like Facebook page

LIKE MoM on Facebook

Please enter your comment below
Would you like to include a photo?

No picture uploaded yet
Please wait to see your image preview here before hitting the submit button.

Your MoM account

Lost your password?

Enter your email and a password below to post your comment and join MoM:

↥ Back to top

Thanks For Your Star Rating!

Would you like to add a written rating or just submit?

Write A Rating Just Submit
Join