Taking a balanced diet means consuming the right diet with the perfect proportion of all the healthful nutrients. Nutrients are the essential components that help in sustaining life. Adequate diet and nutrients are very important in the growth of your children.
Fruit and vegetables are a rich source of vitamins, proteins, minerals and fibres. They play a vital role in the growth of a child and provide them energy and strength. If you eat fruit and vegetables while sitting along with your kids, they will follow you as an example. According to USDA guidelines, a diet which is full of multiple nutrients must be given to kids. At least 5 servings a day of fruit and vegetables are mandatory for children.“Only 22 percent of toddlers and preschoolers and only 16 percent of kids ages 6 to 11 meet the government's recommendation” -as per Ohio State research.
Why are fruit and vegetables essential for children?
There are many reasons for your kid to enjoy a variety of vegetables and fruit. Some of them are as follows:
- Both fruit and vegetables provide vitamin C and folic acid which prove to be very important for the nourishment and growth of your child.
- They also eliminate the risk of severe diseases by carrying plant substances like herbs.
- They help to ensure improved nutrition for your child.
- They reduce the risk of obesity in kids which ultimately increase their performance both at home and school.
- Fruit and vegetables contain high fibres which help to improve the functioning of the digestive system.
- Both fruit and vegetables help in combating chronic diseases in children.
- They provide energy to your kid as they contain natural glucose, fructose and sugar.
It is not always easy to convince your kids to eat adequate fruit and vegetables. They often prefer junk or processed food in their busy routines. Here are some of the ways to motivate your children to eat fruit and vegetables.
- Always try to keep a bowl of fresh fruit and vegetables on the dining table. In this way, your kids will eat healthy stuff when they are craving for snacks or biscuits.
- Whenever you go to buy groceries, try to involve your children. By this, they will become familiar with a variety of seasonal fruits and vegetables.
- Never say that you do not like any fruit or vegetable in front of your kid. Always be a role model and lead from the front.
- Stick to whole fruit and vegetables. Don’t give fruit juices to your baby too often as they can elevate the blood sugar level.
- Try to include fruit and vegetables in breakfast and dinner meals.
What do the new USDA Guidelines recommend for introducing allergens??
The new USDA Guidelines recommend that parents introduce their baby to allergenic foods including peanut, egg, and milk. These guidelines recommend early allergen introduction to help prevent food allergies. Introduce allergenic foods starting at 4 months of age and continue introduction for several months.