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Q:

Are there any foods that I should avoid giving my toddler because they are high in salt or sugar?

Hi everyone,

I have a 2-year-old toddler who is a picky eater and I struggle to get him to eat healthy foods. I have noticed that he loves eating foods that are high in sugar and salt, like cookies, chips, and sugary drinks. I'm worried that too much of these foods could be harmful to his health.

Can anyone suggest some foods that I should avoid giving my toddler because they are high in salt or sugar? And what are some healthier alternatives that I can offer him instead? I would really appreciate any advice or tips that you have.

Thank you!

All Replies

mara72

Hi there,

I completely understand your concerns as a fellow parent. I have a 3-year-old son and I had the same worries when he was younger. The best thing you can do is to try and limit your child's intake of sugary snacks and drinks as much as possible.

Some of the foods that I avoid giving my son include packaged snacks like granola bars, fruit snacks, and crackers as they are often high in salt and sugar. Instead, I offer him fruit, vegetables, and healthy snacks like popcorn (without added salt or butter).

Another strategy that has worked for me is to make my own versions of popular snacks. For example, I make homemade granola bars with oats, nuts, and dried fruit instead of buying packaged ones with added sugar. I also use dates and honey to naturally sweeten desserts instead of sugar.

It's also a good idea to read food labels carefully and look out for terms like "high fructose corn syrup" and "added sugars." Finally, moderation is key. It's okay to indulge your child occasionally, but make sure that most of their daily intake is from healthy, whole foods.

Hope this helps!

leann.gusikowski

Hi there,

As a parent of a 6-year-old, I can definitely relate to your concerns about your toddler's diet. One thing that has worked well for me is to be creative with the foods that my child eats.

For example, instead of giving my child candy or other sugary snacks, I make my own healthy treats like homemade fruit popsicles or a yogurt parfait with fresh fruit and granola. I also have found that introducing healthy dips like hummus or tzatziki can make raw veggies more appealing to my child.

Another thing that has helped me is to make sure that I am also setting a good example. As parents, we are our child's biggest role models, so if they see us eating and enjoying healthy foods, they are more likely to do the same.

Lastly, I have found that making mealtimes a fun and relaxed experience can help my child to enjoy her food more. We talk about our days, play games, and try new foods together. This has helped my child to feel more curious and adventurous about food.

In conclusion, it's important to remain patient and persistent when it comes to your child's diet. Small changes and creativity can make a big difference.

rosie.davis

Hello,

I completely understand the concerns you have as my 2-year-old son loves his sweet treats too. One thing that has helped me is to minimize the availability of sugary snacks in the house.

Instead of buying packaged snacks, I try to make healthy ones at home like homemade granola bars or fruit muffins that contain natural sweeteners like mashed bananas or dates. When it comes to drinks, I offer water or diluted fruit juice instead of sugary drinks like soda.

Another thing that has helped me is to diversify my child's diet with different foods. I try to offer a variety of fruits and vegetables with every meal and experiment with different seasonings and spices to make the food more interesting.

I sometimes involve my son in the meal planning and cooking process too. For example, I allow him to pick out which vegetable he wants for dinner, or let him add toppings to a veggie-packed pizza.

Lastly, I try my best to lead by example. If I am eating a balanced and healthy diet, my son is more likely to do the same. Making healthy eating habits a family affair has helped to create a positive environment around food.

Overall, it's important to remember that there's no one-size-fits-all solution to healthy eating for toddlers. Keeping an open mind, being creative, and trying new things can all make a big difference in promoting healthy food choices.

feest.sabryna

I completely agree with all the tips mentioned above. As a mother of a 7-year-old, I also have experienced the challenge of getting my child to eat foods that are healthy and low in salt and sugar.

One strategy that has helped me is to introduce a variety of healthy snacks. Rather than giving my child processed snacks, I offer fruit and yogurt bowls, smoothies, or even nut butter on whole grain toast. It's also helpful to get creative with presentation, such as arranging the food into fun shapes or colors to make it more appealing to young ones.

Another step that has worked for me is avoiding giving my child foods that have added salt, sugar, or preservatives. Instead, I read food labels and choose products that are low in sodium, added sugar, and have minimal ingredients. This allows me to keep a check on what my child consumes.

Lastly, I've noticed that kids tend to love visuals, so I like to show my child pictures of healthy foods and explain how they will nourish her body. When my child has an understanding of how healthy foods can help benefit her, she is more willing to try them.

In conclusion, finding healthy food options for kids may require experimentation and patience, however, it is worth doing to ensure their health and wellbeing.

ebert.maximo

Hi everyone,

It's really interesting to read all the suggestions shared here. As the parent of a 1-year-old, I'm just starting to introduce solid foods to my child and I'm worried about giving her foods that are high in salt or sugar.

One strategy that has worked well for me is to make my own baby food at home. I use fresh, whole ingredients and try to avoid adding any salt or sugar. For example, I steam and puree carrots, peas or sweet potatoes and serve them to her in small portions.

I have also started giving her mashed bananas, pureed pears, and unsweetened applesauce as a natural way to satisfy her sweet tooth. I use breast milk or formula to make the purees thinner and more palatable.

In addition, I've found that offering finger foods and encouraging self-feeding has been a great way to develop my child's taste for healthy food. I give her small portions of soft, easily mashed foods such as avocado, cooked sweet potato, and scrambled eggs.

Finally, moderation is key. It's important not to completely eliminate all sugary or salty foods, but rather to limit them and offer healthy alternatives. Introducing a variety of flavors and textures right from the start can help your child develop a love for healthy foods.

I hope these tips help you as you navigate your child's healthy eating journey!

germaine.gleason

Hello,

As a mother of a 5-year-old, I understand your concern about your toddler's sugar and salt intake. One thing that has helped me is to try and introduce new flavors to my child's diet.

For example, instead of giving my child packaged snacks or sugary drinks, I try to introduce her to new fruits and vegetables every week. We go out to the farmer's market or the grocery store and pick out new items to try. This has helped her to discover new flavors and textures that she enjoys.

Additionally, I have found that making healthy meals fun can make a big difference. For example, I make colorful smoothie bowls with fresh fruit and natural sweeteners like honey or agave. I also let my child pick out her own toppings like granola and nuts.

Another tip is to limit TV time during meals. This can help your child focus on the food and enjoy it more. I have also found that involving my child in meal planning and preparation has helped her to appreciate healthy foods more.

Lastly, it's important to remember that small changes can make a big difference. Don't stress out too much about your child's diet, but try to make small changes over time. Every healthy choice is a step in the right direction.

fkoelpin

I completely agree with user 1! It's important to limit your child's intake of sugary snacks and drinks. I have a 4-year-old daughter, and I struggled with the same issue. But then I realized that, as her mom, I have the power to control what she eats.

One thing that I've found helpful is to make healthy, homemade versions of her favorite snacks, like apple chips and banana oatmeal cookies. I use natural sweeteners like honey and maple syrup, and whole grains like oats and quinoa flour.

Another thing that's helped me is to involve my daughter in the cooking process. She loves picking out fruits and vegetables at the grocery store, and helping me prepare meals in the kitchen. This has made her more excited about eating healthy foods, and she's more willing to try new things.

Lastly, I've found that setting a good example for my daughter is key. If she sees me eating fruits and veggies, she's more likely to want to eat them too. We make it a fun challenge sometimes to see who can eat the most colorful plate during dinner.

In the end, it's a process, but with patience and persistence, you can help your child develop healthy eating habits that will last a lifetime.

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