Nutrition for kids is built on the same principles as nutrition for adults. Every person needs the same types of nutrients — such as vitamins, minerals, carbohydrates, protein and fat. Children, however, need altered amounts of specific nutrients at different ages.

Reflect these nutrient-dense foods
fruits

FRUITS

"- Inspire your child to eat a variation of fresh, canned, frozen or dried fruits — rather than fruit juice. If your child drinks juice, make sure it's 100 percent juice deprived of added sugars and limit his or her portions. Look for canned fruit that says it's light or packed in its own juice, meaning it's low in added sugar. Keep in mind that one-quarter cup of dried fruit counts as one cup-equivalent of fruit. When consumed in excess, dried fruits can pay extra calories."

vegetables

VEGETABLES

"Serve a variety of fresh, canned, frozen or dried vegetables. Aim to provide a variety of vegetables, including dark green, red and orange, beans and peas, starchy and others, each week. When selecting canned or frozen vegetables, look for options lower in sodium."

protein

PROTEIN

"Choose seafood, lean meat and poultry, eggs, beans, peas, soy products, and unsalted nuts and seeds"

grains

GRAINS

"Choose whole grains, such as whole-wheat bread, oatmeal, popcorn, quinoa, or brown or wild rice. Limit refined grains such as white bread, pasta and rice."

daity

DAIRY

"Encourage your child to eat and drink fat-free or low-fat dairy products, such as milk, yogurt, cheese or fortified soy beverages."

Target to limit your child's calories from
  • Added sugar- Limit added sugars Naturally occurring sugars, such as those in fruit and milk, are not added sugars. Examples of added sugars include brown sugar, corn sweetener, corn syrup, honey and others.
  • Saturated and trans fats- Limit saturated fats that mainly come from animal sources of food, such as red meat, poultry and full-fat dairy products. Look for ways to replace saturated fats with vegetable and nut oils, which provide essential fatty acids and vitamin E. Healthier fats are also naturally present in olives, nuts, avocados and seafood. Limit trans fats by avoiding foods that contain partially hydrogenated oil.
    If you have questions about nutrition for kids or specific concerns about your child's diet, talk to your child's doctor or a registered dietitian.