Making good nutritional choices for your child can be overwhelming when faced with an array of products and nutritional advice. At the Center for Advanced Pediatrics, the team of qualified pediatricians offer nutrition recommendations and support to help your child thrive. Call the Norwalk or Darien, Connecticut, office today or reach out online to set up an appointment. Start your child on the path to developing the good eating habits they need for excellent health, energy, and growth.
Nutrition and what your child eats are essential parts of their wellness needs. Day-to-day nutrition affects their long-term health, weight, and energy levels. It also affects their growth, including bone health, muscular development, puberty and menses (for girls), and energy.
Nutrition can be confusing because so much conflicting information is out there. Plus, nutrition can be complicated if your child struggles with being under-or overweight, an eating disorder, or a chronic illness. Nutrition is also vital for treating an illness or recovering from an injury or surgery.
Babies need breast milk and/or formula to provide almost every nutrient necessary for the first year of life.
When they reach six months old, most babies can begin eating small amounts of solid food. This should include iron-fortified baby cereal, strained fruits, and pureed meats.
As your baby reaches six to nine months old, breast milk might not provide enough iron. Your baby also needs a healthy amount of fat for brain development. Breast milk and formula are good sources, as is avocado.
Your child’s nutrition needs change as their bodies do.
Your child’s appetite varies at these ages because they grow in spurts. They might be very hungry one day and barely eat the next. Always offer a healthy variety of fruits, vegetables, proteins, and dairy products to keep them fueled and healthy.
Your toddler or preschooler needs lots of calcium for strong bone development and fiber to keep them regular.
Encourage school-age kids to get adequate protein from meat, fish, dairy, or nonanimal sources like nuts and beans.
Watch your child’s sugar, fat, and sodium intake, which are usually incredibly high if they consume a lot of processed foods, candy, and soda. This can lead to weight gain. Pack your child’s lunch whenever possible, and make sure the other meals of the day are packed with nutrient-rich, whole foods.
Adolescents tend to overindulge in easy, tasty foods like chips, fast food, and desserts, which are nutrient-poor and lead to weight gain. Some teens go the other way out of concern for their body image and restrict so much that they develop an eating disorder.
We can help you and your child better understand how nutrition affects weight, energy, and long-term health.
Even though your child is growing up, it’s important for you to remain aware of their eating habits. They still need calcium-rich foods to build bone density. Teen girls hugely benefit from getting ample amounts of iron, which can become deficient due to their period starting.
Fresh vegetables, healthy proteins, and whole grains are the foods to encourage now to set them up for good eating habits as they become adults.
Get the nutrition and weight management support you need for your child from the expert team at the Center for Advanced Pediatrics. Call today to set up an appointment or use this website to book online.