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Preschool nutrition

preschool nutrition

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Child nutrition

The subject of preschool nutrition is a hard one, what scientists say is essential one day they are saying is out to kill you the next, food becomes a Shakespearean drama, the lines between good and bad becoming slightly blurred. In a small eating machine that worry can be compounded by fluctuating appetites and even more random tastes, so how can you ensure your child is getting enough of the right nutrition to sustain them through busy day rolling in mud? The answer is much simpler than you might think, in fact most of the hard work is done by the child as they are the ones who know what they need and when.

What foods to choose?

When choosing foods for your child some obvious decisions are glaringly obvious, the general rule of thumb I have always stuck to is, the more processing a food has gone through then the worse it is for my child, and I have three very healthy children so it’s worked so far. No counting calories, no looking at fat content, they eat good clean food as little or as often as they like. When I talk about processing I mean how much it has been handled or altered in order to get it to your kitchen table, for example, if you are carving chicken directly from a bird that was running round that morning, that’s about as healthy as you can get, whereas the same chicken packed into a machine and turned into chicken slices not quite so healthy, but not the end of the world, the same chicken again churned up, mixed with water, covered in bread crumbs and packed in foil, pretty bad.

The same goes for fruit, an Apple taken from a tree and put directly onto the shelf in Tesco is pretty good, when it’s cut up and covered with sugar to preserve it in a pretty little bag then not so good, following me? Getting children used to eating clean food from a young age makes life so much easier when they are older, for example if you have a toddler who is teething, chuck a carrot in their mouth instead of a plastic teething ring.

Vary their diet

Now I’m not some Jamie Oliver food freak and I’m not saying you have to make your children eat like cavemen, if they are eating frozen fish and chips or even chicken burgers then you’re on the right path as long as you try and include some clean goods with it, garden peas for example but on the flip side if you just did your weekly shopping and there isn’t a single piece of fresh meat or veg to be seen then you may want to look at what you’re cooking. Changing a child’s diet gets harder as they get older, getting them to try new things is almost impossible if they’ve grown up on microwave pizzas, so get in there nice an early with the good stuff and you will find it easier. Now comes the age old complaint, “I don’t have time to cook a proper meal for my child”, with all the respect I can muster, rubbish! Microwave rice takes 2 minutes and you can get fish that cooks in the oven in ten minutes, if you really are pushed then fish fingers only take five minutes from frozen, there is always a way.

preschool nutrition

Alternative to sweets

Do you give your kids sweets when they are good? Well if you are giving your little angle a bag of Skittles and watching him bounce round the house destroying everything you own then maybe you should try a replacement, like Raisins, cheaper, just as sweet and better for them. As I said before, I’m not saying don’t give them sweets, I’m just saying every day after school might cause some problems later on.

The important to remember is let your child eat as much as they want from day one, if you make them a bowl of porridge for breakfast and they moan when you take the bowl away then chuck them a piece of fruit or maybe some milk, the next day they may not even finish the bowl, it’s all about growing spurts. By letting them take the lead from day one and knowing they can eat when they are hungry they will learn to control what they eat without being greedy later, trust that your child knows when they are full, and don’t worry if they won’t eat Sprouts, my mum made me sit at the table until I ate them, I never did and haven’t since.



About Steven Petter

About Steven Petter

Steve has three children, Connor, Harmony-Skye and Fletcher. He is a Martial Arts enthusiast as well as an avid reader of books about Philosophy, he began writing short stories and also writes music reviews.

Website: Steven Petter

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