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Not all days are nutritionally balanced

  

 

Research has revealed what many mums already know. Toddlers’ diets are not always nutritionally balanced. The Australian study showed that energy-dense (high fat, high sugar) and nutrient-poor foods are being consumed from an early age.

• Average energy intake is >10% above that required for their age
• Average protein intake is more than 3 x the recommended intake
• Over 50% of toddlers exceed the recommended sodium (salt) intake
• Almost 1 in 5 toddlers had inadequate iron intake

We know that toddlers cannot have a perfect diet all the time. As hard as we try, life has a habit of getting in the way! 

Ideally, toddlers should eat from each of the five core food groups every day.  But their appetites can vary on a daily basis.  So rather than worrying about the occasional ‘bad food day’, it can be helpful to think about what your child eats each week.

The table below outlines the number of recommended serves of each food group for toddlers 1 – 2 years of age.  Your toddler may need more if they are more active, taller, or older.  You should keep an eye on their weight and height – if you are concerned at all, consult a dietitian or your doctor. 

 

 

FRUIT

VEGETABLES

CEREALS/GRAINS

MEAT AND NON-MEAT SOURCES OF PROTEIN

DAIRY

Examples of 1 serve

1 medium apple, banana, orange or pear; or 2 small plums, kiwi fruits or apricots; or 1 cup diced or canned fruit (drained; no added sugar)

½ medium potato (or other starchy vegetables); or ½ cup cooked vegetables; or 1 cup green leafy or raw salad vegetables; or ½ cup cooked, dried or canned beans or lentils

1 slice of bread; or ½ cup cooked rice, pasta, noodles, quinoa or polenta; or ½ cup porridge; or 2/3 cup wheat cereal flakes; or ¼ cup muesli; or 1 crumpet or small English muffin

65g cooked lean beef, lamb, veal or pork; or 80g cooked lean chicken or turkey; or 100g cooked fish fillet; or 170g tofu; or 2 large eggs; or 1 cup cooked lentils, chick peas or canned beans; or 1 ½ tbsp nut pastes and spreads

1 cup (250ml) milk or calcium-fortified non-dairy milk (eg. Soy or rice); or 2 slices cheese; or ¾ cup (200g) yoghurt; or ½ cup ricotta cheese

Suggested daily intake

½ serve/day

2-3 serves/day

1 serve/day

4 serves/day

1-1 ½ serves/day

Source: NHMRC. Eat For Health.

Incorporating NAN Toddler milk into your toddler’s diet may also help fill those nutritional gaps.  NAN Toddler milk is specially formulated for growing toddlers when energy and nutrient intakes may not be adequate.

NAN Toddler milk:
• Rich in iron and vitamin D
• No added sucrose
• Probiotics

For more information about NAN Toddler milks, please click here.

 


 
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