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Child Nutrition Articles

Arginine, an Essential Nutrient for growth
The Importance of Keeping Track of your Child’s Growth
Which foods have the most probiotics?
Does “brain food” help children study well?
Healthy Habits to Keep a Child’s Immunity Strong
Why you should pay attention to your child’s appetite
How to Support Your Child’s Immune System through Nutrition
4 Important Nutrients Your Child Might Not Be Eating Enough
How Protein Fuels Child Development
Why Kids Need Healthy Snacks
Nutrition Tips to Help your Child Stay Healthy during School Age
Signs that Tell Your Child is Undergoing Growth Spurt
How to Choose Healthy Drinks for your Child
Why kids go through a picky eating phase and how to address
Healthy Ingredient Swaps for Kids’ Meals
Nutrition’s Role in Building Strong Immune System in Children
Healthy Food Swaps for Kids so they don’t miss out on nourishment
Why the Food in Between Matter: Beverage Choices

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5 Ways to Engage Your Picky-eater Child

5 Ways to Engage Your Picky-eater Child

From the very beginning to their children growing into adults, it is a given for parents to worry about them eating well. This can turn into forcing little ones to finish food via fear tactics or give in and spoil the child. Both do not address picky eating behaviors with the risk of being harder to correct when older. As children are, alternatives must be provided, so when food alone is not enough, learn how child-friendly nutritional supplements like Pediasure 3+ are ready to provide support.1, 3

  1. Planning meals together gives a sense of responsibility, thus control
    Even the most responsible parents need help and what better place to look for it if not from their children? By listening to their opinions, you can directly provide your counter healthier choices they might love. Not only does these activities give them a sense of responsibility, autonomy to their favourite ingredients, but also accountability. But all in all, if the meals include what they like, they may be more motivated to finish it.1, 2
  2. Make grocery shopping a fun event lets them see that there are way more options
    This will expose your children to the sights and the wonderful fun colors of fruits and vegetables. Share facts on interesting looking ones and even throw in a story about how their favorite characters relate to some of them. You can even teach values, how to pack groceries, and counting change. If your children are old enough, you have fun and teach them that since fresh fruits weigh more than a bag of potato chips, it means you get more food.1, 2
  3. Cooking and having fun is a great way to bond
    Food is what brings family together so the act of cooking itself can be another source of bonding activities. It can show children how much work and effort it takes to cook and eating it will be appreciative of the effort. Start off simple by reading recipes, whisking eggs, mixing sauces, and assembling final dishes. For more excitement, throw in a hint or two that they might get access to the “secret” family recipe if they do well.1, 2
  4. Link good food to good health for a positive attitude
    It’s important for your children to have a good relationship with food to avoid nutritional issues later in life. For example, you can highlight lemons are high in Vitamin C for boosting immunity so they never miss playdates. Or why they must eat fish for protein because it is to become strong and fast to beat the fellow classmate in a race. Or milk for calcium for stronger bones and muscles to carry all their toys

All in all, though your child’s picky eating will not change overnight, it is up to you to provide the tools to curb it. If you are worried that your child is still not getting enough nutrients through food, Pediasure 3+ child nutritional supplement is here to help. Available in powder form for convenience, Pediasure3+ has been scientifically designed to fulfill a child’s nutritional needs with 34 essential nutrients to support growth, even if they are little picky eaters.

Request a Free Sample Today.

  1. https://abbottfamily.com.sg/articles/pickyeater/5-ways-to-engage-picky-eaters#
  2. https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/childrens-health/in-depth/childrens-health/art-20044948
  3. https://abbottfamily.com.sg/products/page/pediasure-rtd

How to teach Healthy eating Habits to your children

How to teach Healthy eating Habits to your children

Kids who learn about good nutrition during childhood are much more likely to have healthy eating habits.1

Helpful Tips Parents can Adopt

Ask your kids for help

When preparing breakfast or any other meal of the day, ask your kids to help. Be it washing vegetables or serving, letting them help gives them the ability to develop team working skills.

Limiting their consumption of unhealthy snacks

Limit the option of having sweets and fried snacks available in the household. Instead, encourage eating of healthy snacks like fruits, veggies, whole wheat items, and yogurt.

Make fruits and veggies a large part of daily meals

Encourage your kids to enjoy fruits and veggies by exposing them to a wide variety of seasonal fruits. The key is to start them off early. You may use the Food Pyramid as a learning point or consult a Nutritionist for a more customized meal plan.

Be optimistic

Instead of feeling discouraged by your child’s dislike of certain foods, be optimistic. You can even incorporate their favorite cartoon characters’ attitudes or strengths as a motivation for them to eat healthier. Tell your kids that eating certain fruits and vegetables will help them be like their favorite characters.

Lead by example

If you want your child to develop good habits, you as a parent must lead by example. Parents are powerful role models in early childhood. Model healthy eating with yourself first before you attempt with the children. Always explain why some foods are really good for them and give praise when they do accept healthier habits. Also minimize distractions when possible so you yourself can focus on your child.

Offer a variety

Do not force your child to eat what they really do not like. Switching it with alternatives is the key to getting them to try new foods. You might be surprised by what your child will love to eat.

Set an example

Besides yourself as a parent as an example, have opportunities for siblings or other age similar relatives lead.

 

Use utensils

At the dinner table, also teach them good table manners. Manners such as using utensils instead of their hands and not to make inappropriate noises when eating.

Reference: https://pediasure.com/healthy-eating-kids/feeding-children


Complete Balanced Diet and Nutrition for Kids

Complete Balanced Diet and Nutrition for Kids

A complete and balanced diet plays a crucial role in a child’s overall growth and development. Carbohydrates, protein, fats, vitamins, and fiber in required amounts per meal comprise a healthy and balanced diet. These 5 food groups provide nourishment for growing children and each are responsible for providing nutrient-specific benefits.

Carbohydrates provide a source of energy. In a child’s active lifestyle, carbohydrates are a vital source of energy to keep them active 1-3 .

Proteins can be found in meats, fish, poultry, eggs, nuts, and beans. Due to children’s growth requirements, they need adequate amounts of protein for optimal growth and to repair body tissues. 1,3

Fats make a great source of energy too and are needed by the body to absorb fat soluble vitamins such as Vitamins A, D, E, and K. Fats also insulate all nervous system tissues in the body and are the building blocks of hormones. 1,4

Vitamins are important to keep children healthy. 1 An example would be Vitamin C, an important antioxidant that helps with bone formation and the absorption of iron. It can be found in fruits like strawberries and oranges. Vitamin E, found in nuts, seeds and leafy vegetables, is meanwhile a key antioxidant for a healthy nervous system and an important nutrient to support developing cells. 7

Minerals are needed to develop healthy teeth, bones, and muscles when children are in their formative years.  A significant development of teeth, bones and muscles happens during a child’s first 10 years.1 An example of a mineral is calcium which is an abundant mineral in the body and essential for building strong bones, teeth and muscle. Another important mineral is potassium which plays a role in multiple key functions in the body. It is found in vegetables and fruits.

Fiber is important in helping children develop and maintain good functioning intestines as well as supports their body’s immune system and also helps children in having a regular bowel movement.5, 6 Fiber also helps in reducing the risk of constipation and other digestive disorders. Fruits such as apples, bananas, oranges, also vegetables such as broccoli, collard greens, and swiss chard make great sources of fiber.

References:

  1. National Institute of Nutrition ICMR. Dietary Guidelines for Indians – A Manual.; 2011. http://ninindia.org/DietaryGuidelinesforNINwebsite.pdf endorsed by Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations http://www.fao.org/nutrition/education/food-based-dietary-guidelines/regions/countries/india/en/
  2. World Health Organisation. Healthy Diet Fact Sheet No. 394. September 2016. http://www.who.int/elena/healthy_diet_fact_sheet_394.pdf. Accessed October 7, 2016.
  3. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and U.S. Department of Agriculture. 2015 – 2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans. 8th Edition. December 2015. https://health.gov/dietaryguidelines/2015/guidelines/. Accessed October 7, 2016
  4. FAO of the United Nations. Fats and Fatty Acids in Human Nutrition.; 2010. http://www.fao.org/docrep/019/i1953f/i1953f.pdf
  5. Anderson JW, Baird P, Davis RH, et al. Health benefits of dietary fiber. Nutrition Reviews. 2009;67(4):188-205. doi:10.1111/j.1753-4887.2009.00189.x.
  6. Stewart, Nathan, ” The health benefits of dietary fiber consumption of adults in the United States” (2014). Graduate Research Papers. Paper37.http://scholarworks.uni.edu/grp/37
  7. https://pediasure.com/child-development-nutrition/powerful-nutrition-kids

Food Pyramid For Kids

Food Pyramid For Kids

How well a child is nourished and progressively grows within the first 5 years of their life can be used as an indicator of their growth rate when older. Though it is a logical thought for parents to pile on milk and calcium rich foods to promote height, variety is the real essence of nutrition. If you are wondering why your child’s growth is slow, though they are eating quite a lot of food, you may need to revisit their diet. The Food Pyramid, also known as a nutrition flag or a nutrition ladder, provides a framework for what a healthy diet for optimal growth is. Variety is key and sometimes requires supplementation (eg. Pediasure) according to your child’s doctor’s recomondations.1, 5

What does a basic Food Pyramid look like?

The design of the Food Pyramid varies depending on ethnicity and region, but they all contain the 5 food groups, Fruits, Vegetables, Grains, Proteins, and Diary. Top to bottom or the other way around depending on a Food Pyramid discipline, narrow apex indicates lower consumption quantity, while progressively wider bands indicate food groups that need to be consumed more of. In general, cereals, grains, and beans to be eaten adequately, while fruits and vegetables to be consumed generously or more than grains. Animal and dairy should be there sparingly in your child’s diet, while oil, sugar, salt, or processed packaged foods only as treats or sparingly served.1, 2, 3

A food pyramid is only the beginning

If parents are worried about their child gaining too much weight instead of height, promoting physical activity will help more than depriving them of their favorites. For a minimum of 60 minutes a day, have them play outside or on school days, sign them up for sports or similar activities, and field trip clubs on the weekends.1

It is important to control the quality more than the quantity. If a child has bad food habits, believe it or not, they are mirroring their parents. Forcing your own food fads and prejudices can cause malnutrition in young children (e.g. vitamin B12 deficiency on a vegetarian diet because it is best from animal sources). Watch out for carbohydrates as well because not all of them are created equal. Feed your child healthy carbs found in freshest clean natural and unprocessed foods because those retain the most nutrients. These foods coincidentally have high fiber content that will keep your child fuller for longer, thus controlling weight.1, 3

The Food Pyramid can be combined with the Healthy Plate Principle of ½ plate fruits & veggies, ¼ grains and carbs, and ¼ proteins and healthy fats. Serving wiser per day, provide 3 – 5 servings of grains & carbs, 2 servings of fruits & veggies, 2 servings of meat, and 1 serving of dairy or an alternative.3, 4 But since children can be selective eaters, parents have to supplement nutrition. For optimal growth, look towards Pediasure for help. Complete and balanced with 37 vitamins and minerals, which include bone building calcium, vitamin D, K, healthy fats, and exclusive Triple Protein Complex for muscle function. With the direction of your child’s doctor, Pediasure is a great meal accompaniment or partial meal replacement so that your child stays well-nourished and achieves optimal growth.1, 5

Request a Free Sample Today!

References:

  1. National Institute of Nutrition ICMR. Dietary Guidelines for Indians – A Manual.; 2011. https://www.nin.res.in/downloads/DietaryGuidelinesforNINwebsite.pdf endorsed by Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations
  2. https://www.fao.org/nutrition/education/food-dietary-guidelines/regions/countries/thailand/en/
  3. https://www.fao.org/3/as979e/as979e.pdf
  4. https://www.healthhub.sg/live-healthy/578/A%20Healthy%20Food%20Foundation%20-%20for%20Kids%20and%20Teens
  5. https://pediasuremyanmar.com/formulation-support/

Additional Readings:

  1. World Health Organization. Healthy Diet Fact Sheet No. 394. September 2016. https://www.who.int/elena/healthy_diet_fact_sheet_394.pdf. Accessed October 7, 2016.
  2. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and U.S. Department of Agriculture. 2015 – 2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans. 8th Edition. December 2015. https://health.gov/sites/default/files/2019-09/2015-2020_Dietary_Guidelines.pdf. Accessed October 7, 2016

Healthy Habits to Support Your Child’s Immune System

Healthy Habits to Support Your Child’s Immune System

A habit is a routine or behavior that you do subconsciously. Did you know that with some positive reinforcement, you can help your child build healthy habits to keep their immunity up? The following are healthy habits that will support your child’s immune system.

Best Healthy Habit Picks in Keeping Your Child’s Immunity Strong

1. Having a healthy eating habit that’s balanced supports your child’s growth

To best instill healthy eating habits, take charge in making sure fruits and vegetables are a staple in every meal, encourage slow eating to avoid gorging, make meal time a family affair, and involve the kids in food preparation and shopping to better understand their preferences.

2. Wash & Wash for Good Hygiene

Hygiene is one of the most important steps to avoid getting sick. Mandatory handwashing with soap after bathroom breaks and before handling food for your child is the best thing to do. Around the house, do regular cleaning to prevent bacteria breeding grounds. If your child has recently fallen ill, avoid crowded areas because prevention is always better than having to take the cure.1

3. Staying Active & Make Good Lifestyle Choices as a Family

If you want your kids to build a healthy habit, you must do so too! Get them into sports in school or over the holidays to keep them occupied. Throughout the day, remind them to drink plenty of water because a hydrated body absorbs more nutrients, along with cleansing and detoxing. All in all, after expending all that energy, it will make getting your child to sleep a lot easier at night time.5, 3

4. Counting the stars & lulled to sleep

Children require up to ten hours of sleep, depending on age. Inconsistent sleep hinders the ability to prevent infectious diseases. If getting your child to sleep becomes difficult, creating bedtime rituals, implementing a solid routine, or even adding a bedtime story can help.4, 2, 3


Child’s Immunity and Growth

Child’s Immunity and Growth

The importance of good nutrition in raising healthy children is fundamental. But did you know that to help children grow and develop physically, a strong and developed immune system plays a vital role too?

Nutrition is in fact an important determinant of our “immune responses” which is how the body recognizes and defends itself against bacteria, viruses and substances that are foreign and harmful. Poor nutrition affects one’s immune system which increases the risk of infection, leading to poor appetite and the danger of this becoming a vicious cycle.

More than adults, children need complete and balanced nutrition to develop a strong immune system, reducing sick days that interfere with their growth and development.

A few ways to help children develop their immunity and fuel their growth is by supporting their nutrition. Growing children need Vitamin C to build their immune system and get sufficient antioxidants. Zinc is also necessary to protect against falling ill and to recover sooner from illnesses. Moreover, probiotics and prebiotics help support a healthy digestive system and immune system too.

In conclusion, adequate nutrient supply is necessary to support the growth potential as well as the immune system of children.


Is your child a Picky eater? What to do if your child is a picky eater?

How Parents Should Deal with a Picky Eater?

Back when we were children, we have gone through many forms of picky eating. You may have liked beef, but not goat or hated fresh tomato slices in burgers, but have no problem eating tomato ketchup on it. From preferring to play come mealtime to outright being afraid of some foods, to your own misperception of your children’s hunger as a parent, picky eating behaviors comes in many forms. Determine which one your child has and start addressing it with activities, fresh foods and nutritional supplements (eg. Pediasure) where necessary. 1, 6, 7

 

  1. Prefers to play instead of eating
    If there is energy left to spend, then it is difficult for anyone, let alone a child, to sit still and eat. Explore the behaviors throughout the day that may have caused them to not be hungry. Have they smacked too much? A late previous meal? Overeating at each meal? They could also prefer to play because eating cuts into their fun time and you as a parent could have allowed this to happen in the first place. To stimulate hunger at appropriate times, set and manage meal schedules, snack times, and make sure they have had a day of fresh air and exercise. High activity during the day causes them to be hungry at mealtime. Make up special rewards like if they come to meal time on the dot 5 times in a row and eat, they get a certain extra amount of play time on the weekends. Pack each meal with protein, fiber, and vitamin rich foods so children can stay fuller longer and control energy levels.2, 3, 4, 5
  2. Fear of feeding/Highly Selective
    Knowing the importance of nutrition for growth, food refusal and picky eating behavior is quite frustrating for parents. But in reality it is quite normal and as children grow, their sensory for certain flavors and textures change so it affects what they prefer to eat or not. Does your child have a fever? Is their mouth hurting? Are they good with dental care? Have they experienced any sort of trauma associated with meal time? Since you can control what, when, and where of meals, adopt meal times as family bonding vs just eating. Children love being involved so if you let them be part of the process of cooking, then they will be more willing to eat it since they made it. Let them tell you what they like and take them along shopping to give them options to choose from. The key is to not pressure and threaten your child as that will add additional fears. First address what is causing them the refusal of the food and when meal time, it is best to have an agenda.2, 3, 4, 5
  3. Parental Misperception of Appetite
    Children at a young age are still growing and their hunger patterns are not yet stabilized. Their level of energy expenditure throughout the day also matters how hungry they will be. Learn to understand your child’s hunger signals and feed them when they show signs of hunger and stop at signs of being full. As long as you’re maintaining your feeding roles and staying consistent with mealtime boundaries, your child should be in charge of whether and how much they eat. Some children can be intimidated by large portions, so reduce each serving to half and they will be more likely to ask for more.2, 3, 4, 5

All in all, to properly address picky eating, take charge of what, when, and where of meals, while letting your child be the master of whether they eat or not and quantity. Encourage your kids to be active while you are providing them with well-balanced meals. If you are worried that your child is not getting enough nutrients throughout their picky eating behavior curbing journey with just simple food, nutritional supplements such as Pediasure can provide support in growth and development. Enriched with a total of 37 nutrients that include protein, vitamin D, calcium, vitamin E, and filling prebiotic fibers, it can help fill in where food cannot for picky eaters. Also in a child approved flavor and texture when made with water or mixed into food, fulfilling a child’s nutritional needs is made easier so that they grow up happy and strong. For more information or samples to try, please visit Pediasure Myanmar today.1, 6, 7

 

References

  1. https://pediasure.com/healthy-eating-kids/picky-eaters
  2. https://pediasure.com/healthy-eating-kids/picky-eaters/habits-tips
  3. https://pediasure.com/healthy-eating-kids/picky-eaters/meal-prep-ideas
  4. https://pediasure.com.ph/child-nutrition/what-to-do-picky-eater
  5. https://www.sarahremmer.com/10-reasons-why-your-child-refuses-to-eat-and-what-to-do/
  6. https://pediasure.com.ph/about/pediasure-plus-growth-supplement-milk
  7. https://pediasuremyanmar.com/formulation-support/
Consistently offer new food.
  • At least once a day, offer your child a small amount of food that she doesn’t eat or hasn’t tried before. Put a small amount of the new food on her plate along with food that your child likes.

3 Role of Natural Vitamin K2 in Kids

Role of Natural Vitamin K2 in Children

Did you know Vitamin K2?

Vitamin K2 is beneficial for strong bone formation.

Without it, decreased bone mass, and increased risk of bone fracture can occur.

(Natural Vitamin K2 helps the functions of osteocalcin and it is beneficial for strong bone formation.

Vitamin K2 activates osteocalcin which binds calcium and transport to bones to ensure natural strength and growth of bones.)

Vitamin K2 found in fermented foods.

Kids need to get enough calcium to get strong bones and Vitamin K2 also plays an essential role in bone metabolism and support the development of strong, healthy bones needed to grow taller. When inadequate nutrition and growth are a concern, parents may consider supplementing their dietary nutrition to improve nutrient absorption.

Ref: Van Summeren MJ et al. Br J Nutr (2008), 100, 852-858. Vitamin Status is associated with childhood bone mineral content.

Role of Arginine in Kids

Role of Arginine in Kids

During the first five years of life, all children have the same opportunity to grow taller as long as they have access to sufficient nutrition and a nurturing environment free from illness. That’s because essential nutrients are absolutely vital for bone growth.

Clinical study showed stunted children have lower serum levels of Arginine compared to non-stunted children* and Arginine consumption has been associated with increased growth velocity in children.

Arginine is found in protein-rich foods such as nuts, grains, legumes, meat, seafood, eggs, and dairy products. Arginine promotes the multiplication of cells at the growth plate in bones to help bones grow longer.

If the diet is unable to provide the necessary nutrients such as Arginine for the development of the child, parents may consider supplementing their dietary nutrition to improve nutrient absorption.

*Based on an observational study in healthy children with lower arginine intake of < 2.2g/d compared with an arginine intake between 2·5 and 3·2 g/d and protein intake < 58 van Vught et al. Brit J Nutr. 2013;109:1031-9

 

Ref: Van Vugh AJ et al. Br J Nutr (2013), 109, 1031-1039. Dietary arginine and linear growth: the Copenhagen school child intervention study.

Importance of Physical Activity For Growth

Importance of Physical Activity For Growth

Are you allowing your child to be in front of a screen too much? Learning from technology is good, but moderation is key. Here are some activities that are helpful to your child’s development.
Plant a Seed

If your child already loves digging, have them help with the garden. Teach your child to water the plants every day and to remove the pests from it too. Your child will learn how a plant grows as they take care of it day by day.

 

 Zoo Visits

Going to the zoo with your child is a learning experience for them and will spark their curiosity. Seeing a lion or a giraffe for the first time will make an impression on your child, and will have them talking about it for days.

 Toy Wash

Perfect indoor (or outdoor) activity for your child. Get one tub with soap and another one without. Not only is it a fun activity for your child, it combats bacteria that are lurking on the toys.

Go for a Picnic

Set a picnic date and prepare simple food like sandwiches, crisps, biscuits, and drinks that both your child and you would enjoy. It’s an eye-opening experience for your child to explore the world outside.

Little Kitchen Helper

Allow your child to help you in the kitchen when you prepare a meal. Teach your child to wash vegetables or let him or her beat an egg. It’s a great opportunity for your child to play at being a sous-chef.

 Treasure Hunt

Make a list of items to hide around the house. Give your child clues (written or drawn) for them to find.

2 To 3 Years Old

Plant a Seed

If your child already loves digging, have them help with the garden. Teach your child to water the plants every day and to remove the pests from it too. Your child will learn how a plant grows as they take care of it day by day.

 Zoo Visits

Going to the zoo with your child is a learning experience for them and will spark their curiosity. Seeing a lion or a giraffe for the first time will make an impression on your child, and will have them talking about it for days.

 Toy Wash

Perfect indoor (or outdoor) activity for your child. Get one tub with soap and another one without. Not only is it a fun activity for your child, it combats bacteria that are lurking on the toys.

3 Years Onward

Go for a Picnic

Set a picnic date and prepare simple food like sandwiches, crisps, biscuits, and drinks that both your child and you would enjoy. It’s an eye-opening experience for your child to explore the world outside.

Little Kitchen Helper

Allow your child to help you in the kitchen when you prepare a meal. Teach your child to wash vegetables or let him or her beat an egg. It’s a great opportunity for your child to play at being a sous-chef.

 Treasure Hunt

Make a list of items to hide around the house. Give your child clues (written or drawn) for them to find.


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