Preschool age children develop eating habits they will practice for the rest of their lives, so they are at an ideal age to experience and learn about healthy eating.
At the early preschool age, children are able to self-regulate and stop eating, even a favorite food, when they are full. As children grow they become more aware of external cues and social messages around food and their ability to self-regulate decreases. At this point children are more likely to want a food because a friend or family member is eating it or because of media exposure to the food. It is much easier and effective to teach healthy eating habits than to attempt to change unhealthy ones! Here are some tools for helping children form healthy habits.
- Early Sprouts is one way to help set children on a healthy path of eating fruits and vegetables. This research-based early childhood curriculum, promoting a “seed-to-table” approach, gets children interested in and enjoying nutritious fruits and vegetables.
- Know healthy eating limits for your preschooler. Use the chart below to make informed decisions for meal time. healthyeatingforpreschoolers-miniposter
- Easy, simple recipes can make meal prep more fun and meals more nutritious! Try the simple recipe below for something new and exciting.