How to Help Your Child Gain Healthy Growth?
Created by Huda Shaikh Updated on Mar 29, 2021
Being a parent can be very challenging at times – and the battleground is usually the dining table. You serve up a healthy meal and your child just refuses to eat it! What to do? Well… fussy eaters are hard to feed and the fact is that most children do become fussy at some point in time. Some battles are easily won these days. A case in point is that glass of milk – well, nowadays you get a lot of tasty supplements that add taste to milk along with the much-needed nutrition required for growth – and so your child is likely to gulp down milk with ease. However, feeding fruits and vegetables is a daunting task!
Remember that force feeding is never a good idea. You may think you are winning the battle with the “clean plate policy”, but it may be that your child is developing a negative outlook towards food, which could lead to long-term issues. So the best tactic is “patience” and also some “smartness”. Being a smart mom means knowing what is meant by good nutrition for a growing child.
Fundamentals of Growing Child’s Diet
Well, first and foremost equip yourself with the right knowledge about a growing child’s diet. Huda Shaikh, a Mumbai-based clinical nutritionist, tells you how to balance out your child’s food preferences and your child’s requirement for healthy growth. Make sure that your child (between the age of 3-9) consumes at least 4 meals in a day that consists of...
#1. Grains: Grains are a rich source of fiber, protein, vitamins, and minerals. Good sources are wheat, ragi, oats, rice, daliya and so on. Grains keep your child full for long and can offer optimal nutrients for growth and development.
#2. Milk & Dairy Products: These are a great source of protein, calcium, Vitamin A, Vitamin D, Vitamin B1, and Vitamin B12. Calcium is required for strong bones and hence consumption of dairy products is a must in the growing years.
#3. Fruits & Veggies: Fruits and vegetables are a great source of fiber, antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals. Fruits provide your child with a natural source of sugar and tend to cut down a child’s craving for other unhealthy sweets and bakery items. Add grated or pureed vegetables to parathas, curd, khichdi, veggie pulaav, upma, dosa, idli or chillas. [Read: How to Get Your Child to Eat Vegetables?]
#4. Healthy fats: Your child’s body requires healthy fats to function, store vitamins like Vitamin A, D, E, K and also to protect important organs. Foods like walnuts, almonds, olive oil, flaxseeds, fish are laden with omega 3 and omega 6 fatty acids which can improve the brain functioning and can aid in cognitive skill development.
#5. Meat, Poultry, Fish & Beans: Proteins are required for strengthening muscles and the immune system. So add these protein sources to your child’s diet. In case you are a vegetarian family, then opt for soya, beans, milk, yogurt, nuts, paneer, tofu, and sprouts.
Breakfast is Important Meal
Breakfast is the most important meal of the day and hence it needs to be loaded with nutrients for a growing child. Your child goes to school, followed by tuitions, participate in extracurricular activities, play sports – and the energy needs to come from nutritious foods and not chips, biscuits, noodles, and candies. Always remember the breakfast needs to have a combination of carbohydrates, proteins, and good fats.
Here are a few sample breakfast plans:
- Poha with sprouts and veggies + 4 almonds
- Veggie upma + 3 walnuts + 3-4 raisins
- Wrap/Frankie with paneer/tofu/sprouts/egg + 1 tsp sunflower/pumpkin seeds
- 1 egg omelet with chapatti (can be made into a roll) + 4 walnuts/almonds
- 1 whole wheat bread sandwich with veggies + 4-5 almonds
Opt for any of the above breakfast plans. Keep rotating and adding to the variety. The breakfast drink should always be a glass of milk topped with a growth supplement such as Horlick’s Growth Plus – this would ensure that your child does not lag behind in growth, be it weight or height. [Explore: Easy to Make Breakfast Recipe Ideas for 1-3 Year Toddlers]
Disclaimer: The views, opinions, and recommendations expressed in this article are solely those of the author who is a certified Clinical Nutritionist, and intended as an educational aid. This is an awareness drive powered by Horlick’s Growth Plus to help your child catch up on lost growth. Horlick’s Growth plus is clinically proven to show visible signs of growth in six months. You are encouraged to obtain professional advice concerning specific health / medical matters.
| Oct 12, 2017
Thank you for the chart. I include at least 3-4 types of fruits per day, and in dry fruits 2 soaked almond early in the morning, 4 cashew 2 walnut in afternoon, 1 boiled egg in evening (daily). Is this enough for my baby? tough she is not very chubby or fatty but superactive.
| Oct 13, 2017
Meri Sasu maa bacchey ko mere peeche se jabardasti khana khilati hai. mai bhi kuch nahi kehti, kyunki meri beti mooh nahi kholti. lekin ab mujhe samajh mai aa raha hai woh jabardasti karne ke wajah se aisa kar raai hai. shukriya madam is jarori baat ko share karne ke liye.
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