Portion Sizes For Kids: Are Your Kids Eating Too Much?

By Myka Bomediano, Parent Herald March 18, 04:20 am

Proper diet is essential, especially during childhood because it links to his brain development and even mental stability. Therefore, too little food intake could result to a malnourished child. Too much food, on the other hand, may be cause of an early onset of childhood obesity.

How do you know if your child already ate enough? A report from New Parent said that experts agree the little ones -- babies, toddlers, and preschoolers -- know best. 

"Children do not need to be taught how much to eat," Eileen Behan, RD, author of The Baby Food Bible wrote. "But you must support this by showing them how to recognize feelings of hunger and satiety by feeding them when [they're] hungry and allowing them to stop eating when they indicate a sense of fullness."

If you've ever checked the nutrition facts label on processed food that you buy, you will see that the calories and nutrient information is based on a 2,000 calorie diet. While you might be able to finish the suggested serving size, it may not be the same portion that's right to serve your children. Remember that your child's calorie needs are far different than your own.

Take note that smaller children need small, frequent meals. Babies, for instance, get full quickly. They have small stomachs so they may get full quickly. This means that if a child turns away, he is already full, so don't force him another spoonfull.

Instead, feed him when he shows signs of hunger, and stop when he turns away. As the child grows, he will start eating more and extend time between feedings until eventually, he can be fed at regular meal times.

Portion sizes differ based on your child's age, but take note that it is not the only factor to consider. As Healthy Children noted, age, appetite, and actvity will all play a part on the right portions to serve kids.

To ensure that he is getting the nutrition he needs, put healthy food on his baby table instead of loading him up on sugar and empty calories. For a more detailed list of appropriate portion sizes for infants and younger kids, check the chart here and here.

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