What Is The Right Food Serving Size for a Child?
Created by Puja Sharma Vasisht Updated on Feb 25, 2020
One of the most common problems shared by mothers is how much food they should be feeding their children? Also, the amount they should be giving from each food group and whether the child is getting enough nutrition or not? For the right nutrition and a balanced diet, it is important that the mothers know the portion size of different foods on their child’s plate.
What Is the Right Serving Size for Your Child?
But, before we get into portion sizes, we need to understand the role each food group plays in our nutrition.
Energy giving foods - These are those foods that are eaten to provide energy to the body. These are the different types of cereals like wheat, rice, millets, breakfast cereals, pasta. Also, sweets and sugars, fats like vegetable oils, butter, ghee, etc. provide enough carbohydrates to give your body energy.
Body-building foods - Those foods that supply the building blocks to the body i.e. proteins. These are eggs, dals, beans, soy products, milk products (except ghee/butter) and also fish/poultry, etc.
Protective foods help the body to fight off any infection and keep the child’s body functioning effectively. These are primarily the fruits and vegetables we consume since they are rich in antioxidants and other nutrients such as vitamins and minerals, they help boost a child’s immunity.
To give your child a balanced diet in each meal, try and include one food item from each of the three groups mentioned above. This then brings us to how much is enough and what is the right portion of different foods?
Cereals - one portion of cereal (dry weight) would consist of –
- A small chapatti of approximately 5-6 inches in diameter and 20 grams
- 20 grams of uncooked rice or small Katori of cooked rice
- 30 grams of breakfast cereal like oats, cornflakes, etc.
- A slice of bread or 3-4 biscuits
Pulses—one portion of daal would be
- 30 grams of dry daal or a Katori of cooked dals, beans
- 30 grams besan (dry weight)
Vegetables –one helping of vegetables would be
- 100-150 grams of an edible portion or one Katori/bowl of vegetables (lauki, tori, tinda)
- Starchy vegetables like potato, Arabi, etc. can be given up to 60 grams or half a Katori
Fruits — One helping of fruit is approximately 50-150 grams. This would include fruits like
- Banana small or half of a big one
- A slice of mango
- A small apple/pear/guava/orange. W
- Watery fruits like watermelon, musk melon half of a small plate
Besides the above following are the other food serving sizes are
1. Egg - one
2. Paneer/chicken - 30-40 grams
3. Milk - 250 ml or glass is the standard portion size for milk
But these are the general guidelines, depending on the age and requirement of the individual child, these portions of the above foods is to be included in the diet. For correct amounts and proportions, a diet plan is advised by a dietician or a nutritionist.
Disclaimer: These portion sizes are only indicative; we do not claim these to be the absolute or right amounts for any individual child.
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