When children are at home, they may eat the same food as their family but with a few more snacks in between meals; smaller tummies need smaller portions more frequently. :-) Therefore, it is wise to always have a good selection of fruits and vegetables in the house, and offer a child water to drink when thirsty, as it is the best thirst-quencher.

Diet in Kindergarten

Surprisingly, many kindergartens offer children an inadequate and unhealthy diet. Some Scandinavian studies have shown that early school programs can have far too little health food, like vegetables and wholegrain bread products, with far too many celebratory foods like cakes and soft drinks. Since many children eat two or three meals a day in kindergarten, it is important that the food they get there is nutritious and healthy.

Nutritionally, it is easy to make healthier food choices. To increase the amount of veggies your child eats, provide your children with carrots and celery in small strips or chunks, cherry tomatoes, cucumbers and red bell peppers for breakfast and lunch, and lightly steamed or sautéed dark, leafy greens for dinner. White bread can be replaced with a slightly denser bread, which contains more vitamins, minerals, iron and fiber (Grade 2 or 3 in Europe). For festive occasions, like Christmas or birthdays, divide fruit and place it on a serving plate for children. For example: apple and orange boats, banana chunks, grapes and other fruits that are available or in season. There are many ways to make holiday celebrations fun and healthy.

In many kindergartens, children get a beautiful birthday crown on their birthday, inscripted with their name and Congratulations! The crown is gently put on their head while their birthday song is sung: Happy birthday to you! Children relish the special attention and run home to their family with excitement and pride. Cakes, muffins and soda are superfluous to the real joy of a birthday and are not necessary to make this a special day. If your children are currently used to sweets, after a short period of demand, children will soon get used to celebrations without excessive sweets, especially if healthy and tasty replacement foods are provided. The crown placed on their head is the greatest celebration of all :-)

If your child goes to a kindergarten where there are lots of birthday celebrations and the nutrition is inadequate, as parents you can take this as an opportunity to volunteer more and supply more nutritious options for your child and his or her class (like bringing in fruit and veggies). Just kindly, communicate this concern to teachers 

and other parents. Over all, children are growing and need the best food they can get.

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