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Healthy food for school-age children - zia cake and cookies

Healthy food for school-age children

 Key points

* School-age children need all healthy food groups fruit, vegetables, dairy, and protein.

* Healthy foods have nutrients that are important for development, growth, and learning.

* Limit fatty, salty, low-fiber, foods, sugary foods, and a lot of sugar or drinks with caffeine

 What is healthy food for kids?

* Healthy food for school-age children includes a wide variety of fresh foods from the 4 food groups:

* vegetable fruit grain foods reduced-fat dairy protein.

* Each food group contains different nutrients that your baby's body needs to grow and function properly. So we need to eat lots of foods from all 4 food groups.

1. Fruit and vegetables

Fruits and vegetables give your baby vitamins, energy, fiber, antioxidants,  and water. These nutrients help protect your baby from diseases later in life, including stroke, heart disease, and some cancers.

Encourage your child to choose vegetables and fruit at every meal and for snacks. This includes veggies and fruit of different tastes, colors, and textures, both cooked and fresh.

Wash the fruit to remove any chemicals or dirt, and leave any edible food skin, as the skin also contains nutrients.

2. Grain foods

Grain foods include pasta, bread, noodles, breakfast cereals, rice, couscous, corn, polenta, quinoa, oats, and barley. These foods give children the energy they need to grow, learn, and development 

Low-glycemic index foods, such as bread and whole-grain pasta, will provide your child with long-lasting energy and keep him feeling fuller for longer.

3. Reduced-fat dairy foods

Key dairy foods are cheese, yogurt, and milk. These foods are good sources of calcium and protein. Try to offer your child a variety of dairy each day - for example, cheese slices, milk drinks, or yogurt bowls.

If you're thinking about giving your baby milk alternatives, it's best to talk to your GP or child and family health nurse or pediatrician

4. Protein

Protein-rich foods include fish, lean meat, chicken, eggs, lentils, beans, chickpeas, nuts, and tofu. These foods are important for a child’s muscle development and growth

These foods also contain useful vitamins and minerals like zinc, iron, omega-3 fatty acids, and vitamin B12. omega-3 fatty acids and Iron from red meat and oily fish are particularly important for your child’s brain development