Are you wondering if your toddler is growing up fast? Don’t worry; many mothers feel the same about their bundle of joy. Now that your little champ is growing up, he requires the perfect combination of nutrients and minerals to help him grow into a healthy individual. Although parents mostly complain that their child is a fussy eater, you must encourage him to eat a balanced diet.
In case, you are not too sure about what a balanced diet is and how to go about it, this blog will help you learn everything related to a balanced and healthy diet.
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Understanding a Balanced Diet
A balanced diet comprises of a variety of foods that are served in different combinations and styles. This ensures that your little hero gets everything necessary to develop into a handsome, strong hunk. Also, it will assist in developing his taste buds and helping him learn new flavours. Moreover, your toddler will be able to build healthy eating habits that would stay with him all his life.
As stated above, it is not easy to develop healthy eating habits in a toddler. So you should not be worried even if you are not able to push your child to eat a balanced diet. The more important fact is that he should eat well because that would provide him with plenty of nutrients.
Foods Your Toddler Needs For a Balanced Diet
There’s no hard and fast rule about food items that you must serve your toddler. While he will get protein from meat, don’t stick to feeding him meat for protein, instead, try giving him other sources of protein like peanut butter, chickpeas, and baked beans as well.
Search for nutrient-rich recipes for your child to munch on. Many toddlers don’t like having boiled eggs and milk. If your little hero to turns his nose up to them, you can serve him the benefit of both by baking pancakes for him.
Also, indulge in offering your toddler both sweet and savoury courses in different meals. This will help him develop a taste for both kinds of food, and make eating meals more exciting for him.
You can try giving your kid some of these food items to keep him on a balanced diet.
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Fruit and Vegetables
Fruits and vegetables are vital for your toddler as these contain essential vitamins and minerals that will boost his growth. Kids mostly prefer eating fruits over vegetables because of their sweet taste, but that doesn’t mean you do not serve him veggies. Serve him both, maybe fruits a bit more, but don’t completely abandon veggies otherwise, he will not be able to develop a taste for them.
Since toddlers get bored easily, you will find him lose interest in what you are offering after a certain point in time. So try organizing a fruit platter that includes fruits such as bananas, blueberries, apples, and strawberries. Alternatively, you can even create a mini vegetable medley with red pepper, broccoli, and cauliflower.
You can also, try giving a mini fruit platter as part of his sweet course. This step will make him understand that desserts don’t always mean chocolate, sweets, and ice-creams.
Protein- and Iron-rich foods
Protein– and iron-rich foods are vital for your toddler. In fact, you must try serving it to him two or three times a day. Some of the best sources of such foods are:
- Pulses such as lentils, chickpeas, and beans
- Chopped ground nuts
- Peanut and almond butter
- Ground whole nuts
Ensure that the meat products you procure are fresh and of high-quality. You can experiment with marinades for meat, and even prepare mild curries, lentil dhal or hummus on your own.
Carbs are another crucial nutrient for growing children. You must offer your toddler with starchy foods like:
- Potatoes and Sweet Potatoes
You can also combine white and wholegrain foods. Your toddler may enjoy munching on white bread or white pasta, so experiment to understand his likings. Don’t be too inclined towards whole grain foods because these are more filling than other carbohydrates. Thus, your child may start feeling full and stop eating even before he gets the desired calories and nutrients.
Dairy Items – A Vital Source of Calcium
Calcium is an important source to help your toddler develop strong bones and teeth. Dairy products are rich in calcium, and you must try to serve him dairy foods like milk, yoghurt, and cheese three times a day. Opt for a plain, or full-fat variety, or non-sweetened yoghurt for your toddler. You can even mix the plain yoghurt with fruit.
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Toddlers develop a taste of everything that’s served to them. Therefore, as parents, it is your responsibility that you serve them the best food. Feeding him a balanced diet will ensure he builds a habit of munching on things that are good for his growth and will benefit him in the longer run.
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