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Guide For Parents

Your Preschooler’s Nutritional Needs: A Guide for Parents

  • TLW Venetian Editor
As a parent, you want to make sure your preschooler is getting the nutrition they need to support healthy growth and development. Here’s a quick guide for parents on meeting your preschooler’s key nutritional needs.

Provide Balanced Meals and Snacks

Aim to offer your little one balanced meals and snacks that include all the major food groups. This means incorporating fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean protein, and dairy or calcium-rich foods. Following the MyPlate guide for parents can help with getting a mix of healthy foods. Offer a variety of colors and textures to keep meals interesting. Round out meals with water or milk instead of sugary drinks.

Focus on Key Nutrients

Certain vitamins and minerals are especially important for preschoolers. Make sure your child gets enough iron, zinc, calcium, vitamin D, and vitamin C daily through the foods they eat. Iron supports cognitive development and prevents anemia, zinc boosts immunity, calcium and vitamin D build strong bones, and vitamin C aids iron absorption. Talk to your pediatrician if you have concerns about nutrient deficiencies.

Watch Portion Sizes

Preschooler stomachs are small! Avoid large portions that lead to overeating. Follow the 1/4 plate rule – make 1/2 fruits and veggies, 1/4 whole grains, 1/4 lean protein. Use a child-sized plate and serving utensils. Let your child decide when they are full rather than insisting they finish their plate. Model healthy portion control.

Limit Sugar

It’s easy for little ones to overdo it on sugary foods. Soda, candy, baked goods, and sugary cereals can lead to cavities, weight gain, and behavior issues. Reserve sweets as occasional treats and opt for healthy snacks as the norm. Offer fruit as a natural sweet treat. Read labels and choose yogurt, cereal, and snacks with limited added sugars.

Make It Fun

Healthy eating can be fun for preschoolers! Cut food into fun shapes with cookie cutters. Offer dips like salsa and hummus for veggies. Do themed meals related to books they love or places they are learning about. Plant a garden together and let them sample veggies straight from the ground. Get creative in the kitchen to make nutritious foods exciting.
As a parent, being mindful of nutrition now will pay off in your preschooler’s health for years to come. This guide for parents encourages you to focus on balanced meals with variety, age-appropriate portions, limiting added sugar, and making healthy eating an enjoyable and educational adventure. According to Census.gov, private schools enroll one in ten of all American children. If you’re looking for quality preschools in midtown Miami that prioritize offering healthy meals to your toddler, reach out to The Learning World Academy today.
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