Healthy Eating, Healthy Children – Part 1

This is the first post in a three-part series about nutrition for children and how KinderCare supports healthy eating in our learning centers.

KinderCare believes nutrition and healthy eating habits are fundamental skills for young children. Here’s a healthy eating tip for ensuring your child receives the proper nutrition for growth and learning:

Fruits and vegetables are key to healthy eating for childrenFocus on Fruits, Vary the Vegetables

Dietary guidelines recommend that we choose to eat a rainbow of colorful fruits and vegetables each day. In particular, we are encouraged to select from a variety of vegetable subgroups including dark green and orange vegetables and beans.

At KinderCare child care centers, a medley of fresh, frozen, canned, and juiced fruits and vegetables are offered daily at meals and snacks. We limit 100 percent fruit juice to two servings per week at snack only. Additionally, we aim to serve at least three weekly servings of fresh fruit and or raw (or lightly steamed) whole vegetables.

Our menus rotate on a four-week schedule to provide variety for your child. Menus are grouped by ages:

  • Infants and toddlers age 2 and under
  • Children ages 3 to 5
  • School-age children (age 5+ through 12 years)

Here’s an example of one of KinderCare’s weekly menus:

Monday

  • Breakfast: Toasty O’s, orange juice bar & berries, and milk
  • Lunch: Homemade cheeseburger pasta, broccoli, applesauce, and milk
  • Afternoon Snack: Graham crackers, bananas, and soy nut butter

Tuesday

  • Breakfast: English muffin, apple slices, milk, and turkey ham
  • Lunch: Homemade turkey chili, whole wheat bread, green beans, fruit mix, and milk
  • Afternoon Snack: Homemade crispy rice & oat bar and apple juice

Wednesday

  • Breakfast: French toast sticks, peaches, and milk
  • Lunch: Homemade cheesy chicken enchiladas, fresh zucchini & corn, apricots, and milk
  • Afternoon Snack: Strawberry yogurt and orange slices

Thursday

  • Breakfast: Oatmeal, bananas, and milk
  • Lunch: Scrambled egg patty, turkey sausage, whole wheat bun, roasted potatoes, diced melon, and milk
  • Afternoon Snack: Fresh carrots & broccoli florets, wheat crackers, and ranch dressing

Friday

  • Breakfast: Banana crunch bread, fruit mix, and milk
  • Lunch: Fish sticks, brown rice, mixed vegetables, pears, and milk
  • Afternoon Snack: Apple slices and cheddar cheese cubes

 

KinderCare also provides age appropriate substitutions as well as vegetarian options.

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