Toddler Eating Habit...
Now that your little one has become distracted toddler, you know that you have to be on your game to get any food past those adorable little lips. After all, given your tot's new mobility, he's far more interested in cruising around and exploring his world than sitting still to eat... Its all you can do to strap him into high chair long enough to dish put a serving.. and you know what this is actually an ideal time to start teaching him about healthy eating habits... that's because the patters he develop now will likely to to be ones he'll carry into adulthood.
Make healthy meals and snacks... Since your child can't exactly opt out of dinner and take the car to drive through himself, you get to decide what's on the menu... That makes now a prime opportunity to help him learn to like nutritious foods - and to avoid foods that are high in fat, sugar, cholesterol, and sodium... Now, what should you serve????
How Much Should I try to Have my Toddler Eat per Day?
When planning and serving meals to your toddler, try to have him/her consume the following on a daily basis:
16 ounces (2 cups) of milk (or yogurt, cheese or other calcium rich foods)
4 servings of fruits and vegetables. (Serving size: one tablespoon per year of age.) One serving should be high in vitamin C and another in vitamin A.
4 servings of grains - bread and cereal. One should be an iron-fortified baby cereal. A serving is about 1/4 to 1/3 an adult portion (1/4 slice toast, 1/4 cup pasta)
2 servings of proteins - meat, beans, eggs, tofu, or peanut butter. A good serving of protein should be served at every meal. One serving equals 1/2 ounce.
Take your cues from your toddler.. Though Mom do know best, but its important to recognize that young children have a pretty good handle on when they need to eat and when they don't.... Some days your child will eat like a horse, other days it will seem as though he's channeling on a hunger strike.
Keep offering new foods... But don't be discouraged if your little one doesn't immediately say "Yum!"... It may help to remember that "no" doesn't really mean "no"..it often means "not now"
Research shows that it can take ten or 15 tries before a toddler will accept a new food
Watch the milk and juice intake... Of course, these are healthy parts of a toddler's diet.. but when kids drink more that 16 to 24 ounces of milk more than six ounces of juice a day, that can fill them up so they're not hungry for other nutritious food.
Avoid using food as a reward or a show of love... A job well done - going to the potty, picking up toys .... deserves reward... but if you get into the habit of offering treats for every accomplishment, it can lead your toddler to develop an unhealthy emotional relationship with food,
When you want to reward your child or let him know how much you love him, give him hugs and kisses.