It is not uncommon for many of us to struggle to meet our daily fruit and veg needs. Especially when trying to increase our children’s fruit and veg consumption to help support their growth and development.
Why is it important for our children to include fruit and vegetables in their daily diet?
- Rich source of Fibre (Healthy Digestive System)
- Rich source of vitamins, minerals, phytonutrients (nutrients naturally present in plant which protects health known as antioxidants & flavanoids)
- Help protect against chronic diseases like heart disease, stroke, some types of cancers
- Help prevent excessive weight gain
- Relatively low in calories
Australian Dietary Guidelines Daily Recommendations for ALL ages:
- Aim for 2 serves of fruit
- Aim for 5 serves of vegetables
What Does a Serving Look Like?
- 2 small pieces of fruit (e.g, 2 plums, 2 kiwis, 2 mandarins)
- 1 medium piece of fruit (e.g, banana, pear, apple, peach)
- 1 cup of canned or chopped fruit (e.g, berries, mango, pineapple)
- 125ml (½ cup) fruit juice (no added sugar)
- 30g dried fruit (E.g., 4 dried apricot halves,1½ tablespoons of sultanas)
Vegetables (standard serve 75g)
- ½ cup cooked green or orange vegetables (E.g, broccoli, spinach, carrots, pumpkin)
- ½ cup cooked dried or canned beans, peas or lentils
- 1 cup green leafy or raw salad vegetables
- ½ cup sweet corn
- 1 medium tomato
How Do You Know You’re Meeting Fruit/Veg Needs in Your Meals?
Meal should be made up of half a plate of fruit/vegetables.
Another analogy is using the chopping board – ensuring that half your chopping board consists of fruit/vegetables prior to combining with the rest of your ingredients.
The Rainbow Effect:
A method used frequently with children who would benefit from increasing their fruit/veg intake is ‘The Rainbow Chart’.
This is an activity which the whole family can be involved in.
It is important to include in the diet fruit and vegetables of varying colours. This is because each colour fruit/veg has its own benefits which protect our health. For example, watermelon is rich in vitamin A, riboflavin, potassium compared to broccoli which is rich in vitamin C, Folate and B6.
- Start with one colour of the rainbow – pick a fruit & vegetable of that colour to try for that week
- Using a chart system – tick/Put star sticker if achieves this goal
- To move onto new colour and pick new fruit & veg to try every other week following
- Repeat colours in cyclical period to try new fruit and vegetables of varying colours
- Week 1: Yellow Foods
- Choose Yellow Fruit (E.g, Banana) and Yellow Vegetable (e.g, Yellow Capsicum)
- Week 2: Red Foods
- Choose Red Fruit (E.g, Strawberry) and Red Vegetable (e.g, Radish)
Hidden Fruit/Veg for Fussy Eaters
A lot of parents find that they struggle to increase fruit/veg in their children’s diet due to the dislike of certain fruit/veg. A nice easy way to increase their intake of certain fruit/veg would be to incorporate it into their usual go-to meal choices.
Home-made Tomato Sauce
Stock up your sauce with lots of veggies like peppers, zuchinni, carrots, tomatoes, onions, spinach and blend to preferred consistency. Without altering taste of sauce you could find yourself getting 1-2 extra serves of veg into your children’s meal.
Adding the likes of mixed berries, spinach, banana or varying fruit is a nice way to meet your child’s daily needs through one quick and easy Smoothie. Ensure to choose milk as liquid basis over fruit juice.
How Do I Book An Appointment with Precision Physio for Help?
We’re taking the health of our clients, members and staff very seriously and our preference would be for you to call to book an appointment so that we can make sure to explain our approach to keeping you safe. You can call any of these numbers to schedule a session:
- Precision Physio Concord: 02 9736 3950
- Precision Physio St Marys: 02 9623 2220
- Precision Physio Mt Druitt: 02 9188 2552
Evolving with the current environment, we are also now offering online appointments, meaning that we can support anyone who is unable to leave their home. Sessions are done via our state of the art Telehealth system and as long as you have a laptop or tablet with an inbuilt camera, or a phone with camera, we can help! Online consultations would be especially effective for Nutrition and Diet based session.
To learn more about online consultations, please call us on any of the numbers listed above.