In a new series, we’ll be focusing on the different nutritional needs your child has at each developmental stage. Today, we talk toddlers.
It is weird, but toddlers actually need less food than babies. This is because their growth has slowed down from the manic growth spurts of teeny tiny babies. Their appetite naturally ebbs and flows in line with their growth, so whether you realise it or not, your toddler is actually quite in tune with what his or her nutritional needs are. Even when it appears they have gotten through the day on fresh air, you’ll often realise that your toddler has been eating little and often, throughout their waking moments. This grazing really suits toddlers, and allows them to make decisions abut when they are hungry for themselves. Try not to be discouraged when your little one throws a fit at the idea of a family meal. Instead, leave out lots of healthy snacks, so that they can graze healthily throughout the day.
Embrace The Snack
If your toddler is eating protein rich snacks like cheese cubes or slices of ham throughout the day it is a win. Leave out crackers, little sandwiches and fruit and veg slices and allow your toddler to choose for themselves.
Ditch the Bottle
Give your toddler milk in cups at mealtimes, rather than making a meal of a bottle. Often this fills up the toddler, making them less likely to go for solid food.
Be Cool. Don’t get panicked if it seems your toddler won’t eat. Play it super cool, and they will follow suit.
Watch Out For Juice. Try to limit juice to one cup a day as it is very high in sugar. If you want to give your toddler juice, make sure it’s well diluted.
Don’t Complicate Things. Toddlers need simple food; it’s what they like. Don’t overcomplicate mealtimes and reap the rewards.