Toddler’s Extra-Ordinary Needs: Explained

Between the ages of 1 and 3 years a toddler gains an amazing 40% in height and weight. A healthy diet is important during this time to support your little one’s growing body and brain. Your toddler also needs nearly 4 times the amount of iron, 3 times more zinc and nearly 6 times the amount of calcium (per kg of their body weight), compared to an adult.

Here are some tips to help ensure that your toddler is getting the right foods to meet their extra-ordinary needs:

  • Offer a wide variety of foods in their diet from the four main food groups; starchy carbohydrates (e.g. bread, pasta, and rice), fruits & vegetables, dairy (e.g. milk, cheese, and yogurt) & protein rich foods (e.g. beef, chicken, fish, eggs, beans, lentils).
  • Try to give your little one 3 nourishing main meals and 2-3 healthy snacks every day.
  • Include oily fish like salmon or tuna at dinnertime 1-2 times per week.
  • Limit sugary food and drinks – try giving healthy snacks such as smooth peanut butter on rice cakes, chopped veg with hummus and fruit.
  • Give calcium rich foods such as yoghurt and cheese – important for healthy bones.
  • Cook with foods high in iron such as eggs, beef, chicken and green leafy vegetables as iron will support normal brain development

For more information on your little one’s extra-ordinary needs call our free phone Careline at 1800 570 570.