Healthy Food for Kids – Smart Food Choices

A generation or two ago children—at least in India—did not have too many choices in food. What a mother or grandmother cooked was eaten and taken in lunch boxes to school. Today the market is flooded with junk food offerings that may or may not be healthy food for kids.

It has become crucial for parents, school teachers and administrators as well as healthcare professionals to work hand-in-hand to ensure fitness and health.

The other day the building had a function and I was delighted when a young kindergarten girl stood at her grandmother’s knee and said “It’s okay to eat Sheera, its healthy food.”

Her grandmother explained that the school had taught her that “chips were unhealthy and that veggies, fruits, and more were healthy, and that she now refused chips and other fried items at meals.”

Healthy Food for Kids – Not hard to make

These healthy foods and are actually right in the kitchen. The rule of thumb for healthy eating is simple. The food eaten through the day should contain portions of veggies, fruits, dairy, cereals and proteins.

Read about the “My Plate Food Guide,”  it’s similar to the pyramid but easier to implement. From day one ensure that the kids eat well and eat healthy foods. Healthy food for kids need not be boring at all, ever heard of a spicy salad bhel? Innovate and what is considered “yuck” food will be eaten in a jiffy. Introduce traditional foods to kids as well as a variety from an early age.

My friend always fed her children the same food she ate; she never bought little jars of food or tins off a shelf. For snacks introduce nuts and other dry fruits. Allow junk foods once in a while and teach the children all about fitness and health.

You will need to set an example too and not give in to the urge of ordering a pizza or fries. Even if you are travelling with kids make healthy food choices. Now the world over fast-food chains and restaurants offer healthy choices to patrons.

Work in synchrony with the school

Many schools have parents who run lunch service or canteens. Work with the teachers to introduce learning about healthy foods for kids. Get teachers to put up colorful charts in school corridors and classrooms and hold drawing competitions for children.

If there is a “show and tell” time at school, then request to be a speaker at the school and introduce healthy foods through characters like Popeye the sailor man, Superman and other popular characters. Ensure that you and the kids get plenty of exercise and don’t fall into the “couch potato, we watch sports” category.

Plan fun activities like trekking, swimming, or skating with the family for the weekends. Teach the kids all about the great outdoors, introduce them to fresh farm produce, talk to them about healthy foods and the world of color and how a plate that has all colors (natural not food coloring) is full of nutrients.

Let the kids choose

Modern theories suggest that a child need not eat every morsel that’s served but just enough. Healthy food portions are not stringent at all times. While parents must keep an eye on nutritional value of foods there can be changes seasonal or otherwise in diets.

Follow your instinct and also let the kids help you decide on what should be the menu for the day. Take the kids to the market and show them how to read food labels and how to select fresh food and fruit.

Introduce play by making potato heads, eyes and ears for oranges, decorate the plate of food for the child in the form of a story, draw eyes and a mouth for the pancake or sandwich, and more.

Healthy food for kids will give a better start in life to the kids, make their bones stronger, and their mind quicker.


A word of caution is, never get taken in by advertisements for packaged foods. Remember they are marketing tools to generate more profit. As sensible parents decide for yourselves what are healthy food for kids and what are not.


About the Author

Ahendita is an experienced writer and editor with over 30 years work experience. She has authored books, magazine articles, web content, e-books, and promotional materials.

Leave a Reply