How much protein do toddlers need

How Much Protein Does a Toddler Need? Your nutrition questions answered by our expert RD

Do toddlers need protein? Find out in this week’s “Ask Amanda,” column. Ask Amanda is our weekly virtual Q and A forum brought to you by Feed to Succeed’s expert Northshore dietitian Amanda Gordon.

Q: My daughter is 20 months old, and she is generally a good eater, not too picky.  She likes fruit, sometimes she is willing to eat vegetables, she drinks milk and eats cheese and yogurt, and she loves bread, bagels and crackers. Unfortunately, she doesn’t like meat and rarely eats it when I put it on her plate.  Should I worry that she is not getting enough protein?

A: Good question! Many toddlers, even those who are not picky eaters, don’t like to eat meat.

Meat can be difficult to chew, and it can have a texture that is hard for some toddlers to accept. I would continue to offer her the meats that you buy and eat in your house (as long as it is prepared in a way that is not a choking hazard), but I wouldn’t force the issue. Also, try not to routinely resort to chicken nuggets or other “kid friendly” meats that you feel she is more likely to eat.

I review lots of toddler diets with parents, and 99 percent of the time the amount of protein in the toddlers’ diets meets and often exceeds how much they need–even with children who are picky eaters or have a very limited diet.

Toddlers between 1 and 2 years old need about 1 ½ -2 ounces of meat or meat alternative each day if they are drinking some milk and eating cheese or yogurt in addition to this. This is less than most parents think.  Protein doesn’t have to come from meat, and there are many great meat alternatives for kids. One tablespoon of peanut butter other nut butter, one egg, or ¼ cup of cooked beans or lentils counts the same as one ounce of meat.

Do kids need to eat fiber

How Much Fiber Does a Toddler Need Nutrition Questions Answered

How much fiber do toddlers need? Find out in this week’s “Ask Amanda,” column. Ask Amanda is our weekly virtual Q and A forum brought to you by Feed to Succeed’s expert Northshore dietitian Amanda Gordon.

Q: Hi Amanda, I am worried that my 18-month-old is not getting enough fiber.  At what age do I need to worry about how much fiber he gets?  How do I find out how much he needs?

A: This is a great question. Yes, toddlers do need fiber. And, it’s easy to get duped when reading food labels at the grocery store. Fiber is an important part of a toddler diet because it helps move foods through the digestive tract, helps prevent constipation and it also helps kids feel full. Generally, toddlers (between 1-3 years old) need about 14 grams of fiber per day, based on the US Dietary Guidelines. Snack time is often a good time to get high fiber foods in kids. Fruits and vegetables are an excellent source of fiber for toddlers and make great snacks. Beans, oatmeal and brown rice are also good sources of fiber and easy to incorporate into a toddler diet.

Bread, cereals and other grain products are also good sources of fiber, but it is easy to get confused in the grocery aisle. Not all foods labeled “multigrain” or “made with whole grains” are high in fiber, and these labels can be very misleading. Grains can vary widely in their fiber content. As a general rule of thumb, when looking for bread products, take a look at the ingredient list and make sure that whole wheat flour is the first ingredient.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Feed to Succeed podcast

Bringing It All Together Feed to Succeed Podcast: Series 1, Episode 12

Join Betsy and Jen as they revisit the highlights of the first series of the Feed to Succeed podcast and weigh in on the take-away themes.  From take a S.E.A.T. to determine the cause of the behavior, to understanding that all eating habits started from something and were reinforced in some way. Plus – a new idea for young children who like to move during the meal…  don’t miss this fantastic wrap-up!


Click here to download this episode.

Click here to listen on iTunes.

can toddlers drink water

'>Can an Infant Drink Water? Your Questions Answered by Northshore's Expert Nutritionists

Does your infant need to drink water? Find out in this week’s “Ask Amanda,” column. Ask Amanda is our weekly virtual Q and A forum brought to you by Feed to Succeed’s expert Northshore dietitian Amanda Gordon.

Q: Hi Amanda. When can I start giving my baby water to drink? She only takes formula and baby food.  She is 7 months old. I wasn’t sure when I could add other liquid.

A: This is a great question! If your daughter is seven months old, now would be a good time to introduce water. The American Academy of Pediatrics and the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics suggest that water may be offered to bottle-fed infants older than 6 months. Babies usually don’t need additional water if they are taking good amounts of formula or are breastfeeding well, however water is a great way to help acclimate to a sippy cup.  If possible, I recommend using a sippy cup, not a bottle. And, it should only be sips of water at this point.  She should not drink more than about 1-2 ounces of water per day at this point. You don’t want her to fill up on water, it’s really just for practice. In time, this will help her learn to be a good water drinker and help her understand when she is older that water quenches thirst well.

 

How to plant a garden with kids

How to plan a garden with kids Episode 11 of our nutrition podcast: Engaging your kids with colorful, seasonal foods

It’s April, which should be the start of gardening season in the Chicago-land area–but under the long spell of winter, everything is delayed. Join Jen and Betsy’s lively discussion about involving your kids in getting planting, inside or outside! Fun ways to spark interest in trying new things, and ideas for what to look for at this time of year.

Click here to download this episode.

Click here to listen on iTunes.

tips for managing mealtime with kids

Managing Difficult Mealtime (and other) Behaviors Tips for chaotic meals with kids

In this 10th episode of our Feed to Succeed podcast, special guest, Eric Tivers, LCSW, coach, and podcaster, joins Betsy and Jen to share his experience with behavior modification; and provide tips and insights to parenting difficult situations. Listen to learn how the acronym S.E.A.T. can help you determine the underlying psyche behind kids’ different eating behaviors. Don’t miss this exciting episode!

Click here to download this episode.

Click here to listen on iTunes.