Keeping Your Child Fit and Healthy

img-kychf-girlMilkFeeding your child can be challenging to say the least. Feeding more than one child can be even more challenging. Between food jags, sport commitments and many different food preferences, you may feel like you are making 4 different meals. Then you may face the daunting task of trying help make sure a child who is struggling with maintaining a healthy weight eat healthy when another child needs to gain weight. How do you get everyone in the family on the same eating routine, while meeting everyone’s individual needs? Here are some suggestions and resources to get you started until you can meet with a healthcare provider or dietitian who can help you develop a plan that is individual to your needs:

Many of the tips I am going to give you come from Ellen Satter, internationally recognized authority in child nutrition and feeding. A full list of her books are located in Helpful Book Resources.

Be true to the line of division no matter what. Parents are responsible what, when and where children eat. Children are responsible for how much and whether they will eat
img-kychf-cartwheelChildren intuitively eat what tastes good and what they are hungry for. They intuitively learn to like new foods. It is when parents become to control their child’s eating habits that eating stuggles can begin.
To provide the basis for healthy eating, you must provide scheduled snack and meals and make them nutritious, plentiful and appealing.
As the adult, you need to evaluate your eating style. If it is not full of variety, you can not expect your child to cultivate an appetite for variety.
Don’t expect to like all new foods you try. You may take a couple of tries to 20 tries
Feed children the right proportion sizes: This is a starting guide for serving size of foods in the various food categories


Age 1 – 3 Age 3 – 5 Age 6 – 8 Age 8+


1–2 tbsp 1 oz. 1–2 oz. 2 oz


1/4 1/2 3/4 1 egg

Cooked dried beans

1–2 tbs 3–5 tbs 5–8 tbs 1/2 cup

Pasta, Rice or Potatoes

1–2 tbs 3–5 tbs 5–8 tbs 1/2 cup


1/4 slice 1/2 slice 1 slice 1 slice


1–2 tbs 3–5 tbs 5–8 tbs 1/2 cup


1–2 tbs 1/4 pc 5–8 tbs or 1/2 piece 1/2 cup or 1 piece


1/4–1/3 cup 1/3–1/2 cup 1/2–2/3 cup 1 cup


Adapted from Secrets Of Feeding A Healthy Family, 1999, Ellyn Satter

img-kychf-readingHelpful Book Resources

Child of Mine: Feeding With Love and Good Sense: 2000, Ellyn Satter

How to get your Kid to eat enough but not too much: 1987, Ellyn Satter

Secrets Of Feeding A Healthy Family: 2006, Ellyn Satter

Your Child’s Weight Helping Without Harming: Birth Through Adolescence: 2005, Ellyn Satter

Play Hard, Eat Right: A Parent’s Guide to Sports Nutrition for Children, 1995, By The American Dietetic Association

Fit Kids: Raising Physically and Emotionally Strong Kids with Real Food, Eileen Behan, RD

Helpful Websites