BEING HEALTHY - IMPROVING YOUR DIET
Foods can be divided into one of five groups.
When taken in the correct amounts these foods will provide all the vitamins and minerals your child needs for good health and therefore supplements should generally not be necessary. Additionally vitamins and minerals obtained by food are more effective than those obtained from supplements.
Bread, Cereals and Potatoes
They are source of complex carbohydrate, fibre, B vitamins. They may also provide calcium, iron, copper & Vitamin E.
Foods in this group include pasta, rice, bread, breakfast cereals, pitta bread, scones, chapattis, rolls, crispbreads and potatoes (including sweet potatoes).
His/her diet should include 4 to 6 portions of these foods per day. A portion would be an egg sized potato, 2 tablespoons of cooked rice/pasta/noodles or 3 tablespoons of breakfast cereals.
Meat, Fish and Alternatives
The foods in this group are a source of protein, Iron, B vitamins, magnesium, zinc, copper, magnesium, selenium, omega 3 fats and Vitamin D.
These foods include fish, meat, poultry, offal, seeds, nuts, textured vegetable protein (such as Quorn), tofu (soya curd) and other beans and lentils.
Your diet should include two portions per day. A portion would be 4 oz of lean red meat or poultry, 6 oz of white fish, 2 oz of oily fish or 3 tablespoons of beans or pulses.
Milk and Milk Products
Foods in this group are a source of calcium, protein, zinc, vitamins B2 & B12 and fat soluble vitamins A and D in the full cream versions.
These foods include milk, yoghurt, cheese, fromage frais and crème fraiche.
Your diet should include 2 to 3 portions per day. A portion would be 1/3 (200 mls) of a pint of milk, 150 g pot of yoghurt and 1oz (25g) of hard cheese such as cheddar.
Fruit and Vegetables
The foods in this group are a source of Vitamin C, Fibre (particularly soluble fibre), potassium and various antioxidants. The antioxidants help to prevent some of the damage caused by fats in the diets.
Foods in this group are all fruit and vegetables including fresh, frozen, dried, canned and juiced varieties.
Your diet should include 5 portions per day. A portion would be equivalent to an apple, a banana, two plums or a glass of fruit juice.
Sugary and Fatty foods
Sugary foods and fatty foods are a concentrated source of energy (calories). The fatty foods will provide a source of fat soluble vitamins and essential fatty acids, however these would be obtained in sufficient amounts from other items in alternative food groups.
Foods in this group include honey, butter, margarine, cooking fats and oils, crisps, chocolate, sweets, honey, biscuits, cakes, fizzy drinks, fried foods and pastry.
These foods should make up less than 1/12 of your total intake.