When it comes to forming healthy eating habits, it’s best to start when your child is still in preschool. According to Stanford Children’s Health, kids develop their eating habits between the ages of 3 and 5, so regularly feeding them well-balanced meals during this time can build the foundation for a mindful and nutritious eater.
When it comes to snacks, kids notoriously prefer tasty junk food over others. Help curb their craving by offering them these more nutritious options instead:
1. Bite-sized veggies and fruits
Kids need to eat fruits and vegetables to meet their daily nutritional needs. Serve freshly cut carrots and singkamas sticks, sliced apples and pears, orange quarters, and a small bunch of grapes to give your kids their fill of vitamins, fiber, and natural sugars.
Lightly salted popcorn is an excellent alternative to French fries. Popcorn is a whole-grain source of fiber and antioxidants, so to get its health benefits, buy the corn kernels yourself and prepare this snack on a stovetop using healthy oil.
3. Nuts and seeds
Nuts and seeds like pumpkin seeds, butong pakwan, sunflower seeds, almonds, pistachio, cashew, and peanuts are good sources of muscle-forming protein and brain-building fats. They’re also loaded with antioxidants, cancer-fighting minerals, and vitamins.
4. Baked veggie chips and fruit crisps
If you want to prepare snacks ahead of time, baked slices of veggies and fruits like zucchini, camote, or apples can make for deliciously healthy chips. Store them in a cool, dry container for a couple of days, then dust them with some salt or cinnamon when you serve them. Your kids will still get the natural crunchy texture of chips, but with higher fiber content.
5. Homemade pizza
Instead of buying from pizza parlors, try making pizza from scratch, so you’ll know exactly how much carbs, dairy, vegetables, and meat you’re putting in. Why not make pizza cups for a filling merienda?
6. Fruit popsicles
When your child asks for ice cream, give them this sweet and icy treat, you can easily make at home. Simply throw in a bunch of sliced fruits and milk or yogurt into a blender, blend until smooth, pour into ice-pop molds, and freeze for a few hours or overnight before serving.
Complete their diet by giving them well-balanced meals throughout the day. Don’t forget to encourage the habit of drinking milk after meals or before bed every day in your kids, too, to help strengthen their bones; boost their immune system; and get the right amount of vitamins, minerals, and sugar they need every day.
NIDO 3+ is tailored for kids above ages 3 to 5 years old. It contains nutrients for protection, brain, digestion, and overall growth. It is the only growing-up milk with Lactobacillus Protectus with L. Rhamnosus, which, together with a balanced diet, is scientifically proven to help support your child’s respiratory defenses and help protect them against frequent coughs and colds.
NIDO 3+ also contains the right amount of sugar based on what your child needs. Watch this #ToddlerExperTips videos to learn how you can control your child’s sugar cravings from a registered nutritionist and dietician, and get a closer look at how Marian manages Zia’s diet: