It is always a good idea to look at your diet. Here are a few reminders you can apply when making meals at home, child care center, yourself or others.
Variety: Often we stick to the same for meal, but that can limit the amount of nutrients in our diet. This and can also cause children to become pickier and stuck in liming food patterns. Incorporating seasonal fruits and veggies can help increase nutrient dense food, as well as provide a platform for learning. Try to incorporate one or two new meal recipes each month. Working with meal themes (Latin food, food of the Caribbean, grandparent’s recipe) as well as bringing stories or songs can make new meals fun and desirable to try. And of course Including children in cooking meals show that they are more open to trying new foods.
Balance: Balance in one’s diet is where you do not favor one food or food group over another. Creating a plate that has each and every food group is important when creating a nourishing meal. Check out My Plate for more information on balance food and meal ideas.
Proportion: Means eating and choosing to eat the right proportions of certain food groups. For example, your vegetables should be a larger portion size then your grain. This is also true when choosing what is going on your plate. Your portion sizes of fruit, vegetables, whole wheat grains, and proteins should be much higher than sugary foods, fried, and processed items.
Moderation: limiting/moderating how often you eat foods that are high in trans fats, high refined sugar and salts and processed. This does not mean never eating certain food. But paying attention how often you are eating these foods can help remind you that your calorie intake should be coming as much as possible form healthy nutrient dense foods.
To learn more about Nutrition and how to apply some of these principle to your family or program contact out HEAL education Coordinator