Monday, 13 October 2014

NUTRITION AND FOOD REQUIRMENTS FOR PRESCHOOL CHILDREN (1-6 YEARS)





DR. ANITA VERMA (PT)                                                                                         
 (B.P.T), (PGDPPHC),(M.I.A.P)
Wellness consultant
Preventive & promotive healthcare specialist                                              
Email: evahealthcare@gmail.com

NUTRITION AND FOOD REQUIRMENTS FOR PRESCHOOL CHILDREN (1-6 YEARS)

The years between 1 and 6, growth is generally slower than in the first year of life but continue gradually. Activity increases markedly during the second year of life , as the child become increasingly mobile. Development of a full dentition by about the age of 2 years also increases the range of food that can be easily eaten. There is an increased need for all nutrients, but the pattern of specific tissues. During these years children continue to develop new food behaviors. Protein, calcium, iron, vitamin A , vitamin B12, are very important minerals and vitamins required to be take care for kids. Mothers should calculate and monitor the intake of food containing all this for RDA.


Recommended dietary allowances (RDA) for pre – school children
Nutrient
Years

1-3
4-6
Weight kg
12.2
19
Energy k. cal
1240
1690
Protein g
22
30
Fat g
25
25
MINERALS AND VITAMINS


Calcium mg
400
400
Iron mg
12
18
Vitamin A
400
400
Vitamin B12 mg
0.2-1
0.2-1


Protein

The recommended protein allowance per unit of body weight is 1.8 per kg body weight for 1 to 3 yrs  and old 1.5 g per kg of body weight for the 4- 6 yr old . Protein is required for tissue building and other function of body, along with protein carbohydrate and fat are also important. If a young Childs diet is inadequate in the amount of carbohydrate and fat, protein will be used for energy rather then for tissues building and other important body functions. Weight will be lost and there rate of growth will decrease.

Fat

Fat energy including invisible fat for children should be 2.5 % of total energy and essential fatty acid energy is 5 – 6 %. Excessive intake of fat ( such as from drinking too much whole milk) may dull a child apatite and crowd out other nutrition food.

Vitamins and minerals

Requirements for vitamins and minerals remain high as growth and development progress. A varied died usually provides most vitamins minerals in amount needed by your children. The incidence of vitamin a deficiencies sings is high and serum vitamins A level are generally low among Indian children whose dietary intake is less then 100 mg. daily requirement of vitamin A is 400 mcg. Deficiency of vitamin A in children can cause Bitot’s spots, night blindness, or in several cases total blindness also. Milk, eggs, carrots, and green leaves, vegetables, yellow fruits e.g papaya , mango etc. should be included in the diet

     

Guidelines to be considered while planning a diet for pre school child.

Ø       The diet should be adequate in quantity and quality of  different nutrients
Ø       Toddlers want be feed themselves and should encouraged to do so
Ø       Thereby finger foods such as carrot can be given
Ø       The diet should include variety of foods
Ø       The child who is taught to eat every thing on his plate is much more likely to enjoy optimal health then is the one who picks and chooses.
Ø       The food served should be of different shapes, flavors and colors; this will improve the food intake.
Ø       The child should be never forced to eat more then he can take
Ø       Young children have high taste sensitivity therefore they prefer mildly flavored foods
Ø       Food preferences should be taken in to consideration
Ø       Child should never be hurried while taking food
Ø       They have short attention span and are easily distracted from eating
Ø       The person feeding should not show any dislike of that food in front of the child this may lead to rejection of the food by the child.


NUTRITON RELATED PROBLEMS OF PRESCHOOL CHILDREN  

Nutritionally adequate diet with suitable calories levels to bring about desirable growth and development can prevent obesity, under weight, growth failure dental caries and anemia .continuous monitoring of growth and nutritional status by health professionals and parents is essential to nip any budding problems in the kids. The primary case for malnutrition is inadequate and faulty diet. Apart from poverty and socioeconomic factors environmental factors also play an important role in aggravating the dietary deficiency diseases. Thus a marginal intake of nutrients which by itself may not lead to clinical deficiency may do so when infectious disease super imposed.