Eating well starts at a young age. Here is what every parent should know.Nutrition for your 1-2 year old babyAt this age, your child’s digestive system should be mature enough for him to eat the same food as you. Ensure that his food is prepared with a reasonable amount of salt, sugar and/or oil for taste and variety. He should also drink enough water and get enough fibre (from fruits, vegetables and whole-grains) to prevent constipation. You can continue to give him breast milk. If he has been drinking formula milk, it is fine to switch to whole milk. Between 2-5 years of age, you may switch him to low-fat milk.Your child has been growing rapidly, tripling his birth weight in a year. Now his rate of growth will slow down and his appetite may lessen. This is normal. Remember that his tummy size is still small. Do not force him to eat more than he needs. It is best to offer smaller portions of healthy food more often and let him choose how much to eat.What and how much to eat As a parent, you model food preferences and play an important role in setting a good foundation for your child’s dietary habits. Eating habits can influence the risk of developing lifestyle-related diseases such as obesity, diabetes, high blood pressure and high blood cholesterol. There is growing evidence that food preferences and eating habits developed from childhood can influence a child’s eating habits when he becomes an adult. Hence it is important to help your child make better food choices now. This will have a big impact on his health and quality of life later.All you have to do is to:
Offer your child a variety of food from the four main food groups to get all the nutrients he needs. Healthy eating tips:
Video: Speaking of Children - Healthy Eating Habits for Children Wondering how you're going to get your kids started on their fruits and vegetables even though you know they really want those chicken nuggets? Check out Dr Mary Chong's pointers on instilling healthy eating habits in your children from day one!
Contributed by:Health Promotion Board