tips on portion for your child
All of these foods should your little one be eating every day.
4 servings a day
1 serving is ¼ of an adult portion – such as ¼ piece of toast, ¼ cup cooked pasta
Fruit and vegetables
5 servings a day
1 serving is 40g, which is about the size of your little one’s palm.
Protein – non-dairy sources
1 serving is:
15-30g meat or fish, 1 whole egg, ¼ cup dry beans/pulses
Protein – dairy
3 servings a day to hit calcium requirements
1 serving is:
½ glass whole milk, pot of yoghurt or 30g full fat cheese
Allow some fat each day with, but not instead of, the other nutrient groups.
To ensure adequate intake of Omega 3, aim for 2 servings of fish a week, 1 of which should be oily.
1 serving is: 1-3tbsp of fish
A diet rich in vitamins and minerals will help to ensure your little one’s healthy growth and a healthy immune system.
Vitamin A – for growth and immunity. Found in milk, cheese, egg yolk.
Vitamin D – helps with calcium absorption for strong bones and teeth. Found in oily fish and eggs.
Vitamin E – protects the cells in the body from damage and disease. Found in nut oils, sweet potatoes.
Vitamin K – for blood clotting. Found in green leafy veg such as spinach and broccoli.
Vitamin C – for healthy skin, bones and gums. Also increases iron absorption. Found in broccoli, cauliflower and citrus fruit.
The B Vitamins – for immune system function, and assisting the body in releasing energy from food. Found in lean meats, poultry, dairy, wholemeal and wholegrains.
Iron – for healthy blood and brain development. Also important in transporting oxygen around the body. Found in lean meats, poultry, legumes, eggs and dark green leafy veg.
Calcium – for growth and maintenance of healthy bones and teeth. Found in dairy products, leafy green veg, fortified bread.
Selenium – has antioxidant properties that protect the body’s cells from damage. Found in fish, lean meat, poultry, dairy products.
Zinc – for growth and immune function. Found in lean meat, chicken, milk and cheese
The Department of Health recommends that children should be given supplements particularly providing vitamins A, C and D in the form of drops from 6 months to 5 years, particularly if a child does not eat a varied diet.
Please visit our special recipe for toddlers , to allow your child to get the correct amount of nutrients and still have flavour and a tasty meal and lots of tips to make your cooking easy .
FOOD TO AVOID
Children’s food shouldn’t have salt added. After your little one’s first birthday, the daily recommended maximum amount of salt until they are 3 years old is 2g a day (0.8g sodium). 4-6 year olds should have no more than 3g a day of salt. All our meals are Low in Salt under EC 1924/2006 regulation. Some of our ingredients, such as cheese or breadcrumbs, contain very small levels of salt, but we work hard to source the ingredients with the very lowest levels possible, and never add any extra salt.
When cooking for the family, be wary of ingredients like stock cubes and gravy as they are notoriously high in salt. Reading food labels is a great habit to get into, and remember that ‘salt’ and ‘sodium’ are not the same. 2g salt is the equivalent of 0.8g sodium.
Little ones should have a limited intake of sugar. This will help to ensure they don’t develop a preference for ingredients that can contribute to poor health in later life. We never add sugar to any of our meals. We let the natural sweetness of vegetables, especially ones like butternut squash, sweet potato, carrot and petit pois, do all the work.
Remember that added sugar comes in many different forms. Look out for the following words as they signal the presence of added sugar: white sugar, brown sugar, honey, molasses, corn syrup, maple syrup, high-fructose corn syrup, invert sugar syrup. Some products may use natural sweeteners such as apple juice, agave syrup, and coconut blossom nectar.
Sugary, fizzy drinks and fruit squashes should be avoided for toddlers as they can be harmful to teeth and overall health. If you do give your toddler sugary drinks or fruit squashed make sure that they are diluted with water and drank at meal times.
Caroline Walker Trust (2011) Eating Well for 1-4 Year Olds
The CWT is a charity tha They produce expert reports which establish nutritional guidelines for toddlers. Eating Well for Under-5s in Child Care (2011) is a guide that was originally published by the Trust in 1998, and has been widely used in public health nutrition since that time.
Children’s Food Trust
A registered charity, formally known as the School Food’s Trust who provide independent, expert advice to local and national government and other organisations working on children’s food issues.
Paediatric Group of the British Dietetic Association
The British Dietetic Association (BDA), established in 1936, is the professional association for dietitians. The association has 18 specialist group, of which the Paediatric Group is one. Each specialist group is driven by volunteers who offer the most up-to-date information, leadership, advice, guidance for dietitians and nutritionists working in a range of professional specialisms.
Commission 1924/2006 regulation
This regulation protects consumers from misleading or false claims. It also makes it easier for manufacturers to identify nutrition and health claims that can be used on their food products.
Source: Scientific Advisory Commission on Nutrition
The Scientific Advisory Committee on Nutrition (SACN) is an advisory Committee of independent experts that provides advice to the Public Health England as well as other government agencies and Departments. Its remit includes matters concerning nutrient content of individual foods, advice on diet and the nutritional status of people