Dietary and Nutrition Guidelines for Children

Many adults are aware of the new government dietary guidelines and pyramid that show how many servings from each food group should be eaten daily. Most parents are diligent about making sure that their children are getting servings of food from each food group daily. What many parents do not realize is that children have their own needs and should not follow the adult dietary guidelines.

When helping their children to follow the correct dietary guidelines for their age parents should be aware of what constitutes a serving size.

One serving of grains equals:
â�¢ �½ cup of oatmeal
� 1 cup of dry cereal
â�¢ �½ cup of cooked pasta or rice

One serving of vegetables equals:
� 1 cup of leafy vegetables
â�¢ �½ cup of other vegetables, raw or cooked
â�¢ �¾ of a cup of vegetable juice

One serving of fruit equals:
� 1 medium piece of fruit
â�¢ �½ cup of chopped or canned fruit
â�¢ �¾ cup of fruit juice

One serving of dairy equals:
� 1 cup of milk or yogurt
â�¢ 1 �½ ounces of cheese (about the size of two dominos)

One serving of meat and beans equals:
� 2-3 ounces of cooked lean meat (about the size of a deck of cards)
â�¢ �½ cup of cooked dry beans
� 2 tbsp of peanut butter or 1/3 cup of nuts

According to the new government dietary guidelines for children, those between the ages of two and three should eat the following each day:
� 3 ounces of grains
� 1 cup of vegetables
� 1 cup of fruits
� 2 cups of diary
� 2 ounces of meat, beans or nuts

According to the new government dietary guidelines for children, those between the ages of four and eight should eat the following each day:
� 4-5 ounces of grains
â�¢ 1 �½ cups of vegetables
â�¢ 1 �½ cups of fruit
� 2 cups of diary
� 3-4 ounces of meat, beans or nuts

According to the new government dietary guidelines for children, those between the ages of nine and thirteen should eat the following each day:
� 6 ounces of grains
â�¢ 2 �½ cups of vegetables
â�¢ 1 �½ cups of fruits
� 3 cups of diary
� 5 ounces of meat, beans or nuts

Proper nutrition is essential for the growth and development of all children. With planning and creativity every parent can ensure that that his or her children are getting enough foods from the recommended food groups each day.

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