As your child steps into the primary school, she will surprise you with her independent decision-making, and other physical skills. Her cognitive reasoning and emotional skills grow steadily.
Peers have considerable influence, and your child will like to spend as much time with her friends, and learns her skills outside the home.
She can express and communicate her consent, ideas, and opinions in a cohesive manner. This is also the time for power struggles, and having set preferences with respect to food, clothes, toys, and people.
As a parent, you are still an anchor to help her make sound choices, in all areas of life, including her diet, to last a lifetime.
A wholesome breakfast is a necessity for your child to wade through the day effortlessly. Provide healthy choices, and let your child decide on what and how much she wants to eat.
You must aim to offer foods belonging to various food groups – grains, vegetables, fruits, milk, and protein.
Growing children of this age group need important nutrients for their development and growth. Calcium, Iron, Magnesium, Potassium, Vitamin A, C, D, E, Zinc, and essential fatty acids are necessary for the overall development of your child.
Limit fatty, sweet, and salty foods to prevent childhood obesity. Encourage her to drink plenty of water, and eat fresh fruits, instead of fruit juice.
Children of this age are also conscious of body image, and this can hinder their growth. Over as well as under eating leads to various health problems, and you must guide them with a balanced diet coupled with physical activity.
Most children tend to have meals away from home, leaving them to have more empty calories than nutrients. Lay emphasis on wholesome foods and portion control.
Parents must model healthy lifestyle with sound eating habits and physical activity. Discourage the use of dietary supplements, and insist in absorbing the nutrients through natural foods, unless necessary.
|Grains||5-6||Oatmeal, whole wheat bread, cooked rice, all cereals|
|Vegetables||3-5||Spinach, carrots, sweet potato, broccoli, mixed vegetable soup, papaya||Provide vegetables that are rich in Vitamin A, C and fiber|
|Dairy||2-3||Low fat or fat free milk, cheese, yogurt||Switch gradually to fat free milk if the child doesn’t like the taste|
|Proteins||½ cup||Meat, egg, legumes, lentils, nuts|
|Fruits||3-4||Citrus fruits, mango, berries, water melon, bananas|
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