Foundation: 3-5 Years Healthy Eating

Dietary requirements of pre-school children and toddlers are different from older children. Pre-school children are at an age when they are growing rapidly and tend to be very active therefore they require nutrient dense foods to provide them with the protein, vitamins and minerals their bodies need to give them energy and help them grow and develop.

The Eatwell Guide model should be followed for children from the age of 5.

Eat Well. Be Well.

No one food contains all the nutrients (goodness) we need to be healthy. So try to eat a variety of different foods each day and more of some types than others:

So try to eat:

  • Plenty of fruit and vegetables – aim for 5 a day.
  • Plenty of starchy foods like bread, pasta, potatoes, cereals and rice.
  • Some meat, fish, eggs, beans and pulses like lentils.
  • Some milk and dairy foods like cheese and yogurts.
  • Just a small amount of foods and drinks high in fat and /or sugar. You can still have things like chocolate, crisps, cakes, biscuits and sweets but not too often.

More top tips!

  • Enjoy your food – cooking is fun and enjoy spending time eating it and trying out new things.
  • Drink plenty of fluids such as water, milk, unsweetened tea, a glass a day of pure fruit juice or a smoothie.
  • Eat ‘me size meals’. Young children should not be eating the same amount of food as their older brother or sister or their parents.
  • ‘Meal time’, eat 3 regular meals a day and don’t skip breakfast. Also choose healthy snacks – try our cute sheep sandwich!
  • Lean red meat contains iron which helps to keep the blood healthy and it’s a good source of protein which helps you grow. You should also try to eat oily fish once a week.
  • ‘Up and about’, it’s very important you keep active –make time for some exercise, have a game of football in or after school or go for a swim with your family or even just go for a walk. Find an activity you enjoy and have fun keeping active with your cool mates – you’ll feel fitter and have more energy!
  • When cooking and eating try not to add any extra salt to your food.