As a mother, feeding your child is one of the most important things you can do for them. It’s drummed into your head before they’re even born how eating a healthy, balanced diet is important for you as a mother, but babies and toddlers in particular need to receive all of the necessary nutrients for healthy growth and development.
When I was pregnant with Harry I didn’t really think much about feeding beyond the three-hourly milk feeds I soon became familiar with. I did have visions of myself wearing a pretty apron, cooking up nutritious meals for him and his brother, which they would wolf down with delight, but of course that didn’t happen.
You see, Riley has always been a fantastic eater and will literally eat anything you put in front of him, but Harry, Harry is fussier than I could have ever imagined and mealtimes have become a battle of wills. Though it pains me to say it, he is a fully-fledged VIP member of the “beige club”. White bread, pasta, rice, chips, chicken – He’s all over that stuff like a rash, but try and add the tiniest bit of colour to his plate and he has a full on meltdown.
I think as parents, it’s perfectly natural for us to worry about whether our children are getting enough nutrients, especially if they refuse to eat sometimes. But the truth is, it’s perfectly normal for toddlers to refuse to eat or even taste new foods and as long as they’re active and gaining weight, then they’re getting enough nutrients to grow, even if it may not seem like it to you.
The trick, I have found, is not to worry about what Harry eats in a day, or if he doesn’t eat everything at mealtimes. It’s more important to think about what he eats over a week.
Providing he’s eating something from the four main food groups (milk and dairy products, starchy foods, fruit and vegetables, protein), even if it’s always the same favourites or secret ingredients that I’ve blended in to pasta sauces, I don’t need to worry. Gradually I introduce other foods or go back to the foods he didn’t like before and try them again.
The best way for him to learn to eat and enjoy new foods is to copy me so I try to eat with him and Riley as often as i can so that i can set a good example.
Another step I have taken is to supplement his diet with SMA PRO Toddler Milk.
SMA Nutrition has recently launched an improved formula for SMA PRO Toddler Milk, which is supported by 50 years of protein research. It contains NUTRI-STEPS, a unique blend of ingredients specially tailored to help provide the important nutrients toddlers need to build a nutritional foundation for life:
- Vitamin D and calcium for normal growth and development of bones
- Iodine to contribute to the normal growth of children
- Iron to help support normal cognitive development
- Omega 3 & 6 essential fatty acids to support normal development and growth*
Just 2 x 200ml servings provide at least 100% of your toddler’s recommended daily amount of Vitamin D and that is why I recommend using SMA PRO Toddler Milk as part of a healthy toddler diet.
You can find out more about what’s in SMA PRO Toddler Milk using the interactive feature on their website.
IMPORTANT NOTICE: SMA PRO Toddler Milk is suitable for young children from 1-3 years, as part of a healthy balanced diet and is not a breast milk substitute. Breastfeeding should continue for as long as possible.
*The beneficial effect of essential fatty acids is obtained with a daily intake of 10g of Linoleic acid and 2 g of a-linolenic acid.