More than 90% of children between the ages of 2 and 5 eat over-processed foods

Childhood is the ideal time to explore and discover different worlds, tastes, textures and flavors. It is during this particular stage that the basic foundations of a child’s growth and development are formed, apart from the moment when certain definitions and choices are made, such as which foods they like or not, for example.

According to the recommendations of the Ministry of Health, until the age of 6 months, babies should be fed exclusively – if possible – by breast milk and after this period, foods such as fruits and vegetables should be included in the baby’s diet. , Rich in vitamins, minerals and essential nutrients for its growth.

Ultra-processed foods are not recommended because of the risk of developing diabetes, but they are already part of the diet of 93% of children aged 2 to 5 years. According to the National Research on Infant Food and Nutrition (ANANI) developed by the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro (UFRJ).

For Dayanna Miranda Camizão, the high cost of highly processed foods – such as cookies and soft drinks – can be affected by colorful and eye-catching advertisements at this age, especially those with child characters in the packaging.

“This kind of product attracts the attention of children because it has many colors and their favorite heroes, so they think it is a good food that nourishes and satisfies. In this case, parents should avoid such products and always encourage the consumption of natural foods, talk to their children and explain in a practical and educational way, why they are more nutritious, tasty and good for their growth, ”the company commented. . Nutritionist who works at Upuerê Educação Infantil.

Children and healthy eating

Experts explain that institutions like supermarkets have a lot of attraction for a child, which can contribute to the hatred of natural foods. “Not only is it easy to teach him the reasons for eating a healthy diet and encourage him to eat a nutritious diet with only natural items, but parents can find creative ways to encourage children’s participation in the feeding process, such as inviting the child to make family meals. Keeps in touch ”, gives the example of Dayanna.

Since this is a crucial time for children to grow up, Dayana emphasizes that childhood is the ideal stage to teach good principles, and that it is essential to take and avoid a healthy diet to prevent the development of diseases such as obesity, high blood pressure and diabetes. The phenomenon of respiratory syndrome thanks to strengthening the immune system from natural foods.

“Food education is not just about learning to eat healthy food; The reason for eating things is to understand In nature, The improvement that they bring to our body, aligns the diet with other habits that are in favor of health, such as regular exercise. In addition, a well-nourished child in childhood means a developed adult future, more adaptable and more disease resistant, ”he concluded.

5 tips to encourage food education for children

Even among other ways to promote healthy eating as a child, nutritionists offer some tips:

  • Create color plates with the help of baby: Ask the child to choose different colors to ensure more nutrition on the plate and more interest in assembly;
  • Promote family meals: Children understand that there is a set time for meals and since they are all in the family they can see their parents as role models when it comes to eating and what to eat;
  • Take your child to the fair: this is a good time to get acquainted with the food In nature Explain the improvements that have been made as a result of their consumption, as well as encouraging the participation of children in the choice of items;
  • Invent new recipes: Some foods may seem weird when babies eat for the first time, but there’s no reason to give up. Find new recipes and ways to insert that item into a kids’ plate;
  • Create family meals: In addition to inviting them to choose food, encouraging participation by washing fruits and vegetables, for example, is a great way to interact with children’s items and arouse children’s curiosity.

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