Chapter 16 Feeding Toddlers & Young Children ©2015 Cengage Learning. Toddler Development and Eating Behaviors • Developments that influence toddlers’ eating behaviors: – Physical changes • Rate of growth slows considerably • Choking remains a hazard • Appetite decreases – Motor skills improve; toddlers can use utensils and drink from a cup, but need much practice – Small stomach capacity; must eat often Toddler Development and Eating Behaviors (continued) • Social development – Experiences frequent mood swings – Struggles with autonomy and asserting independence – Still experimenting with strong taste and texture preferences; not uncommon for toddlers to spit out food or use their hands to remove it from their mouth – Enjoys adult attention and approval – Neophobic ©2012 Cengage Learning. All Rights Reserved. Preschool- and School-Age Children: Development and Eating Behaviors • Developments that influence older children’s eating behaviors: – Physical changes • Growth continues at a slower pace and often in spurts • Appetite is good, but children prefer smaller meals and eating often Preschool- and School-Age Children: Development and Eating Behaviors – Motor skills • Are able to feed themselves independently; may still have many spills and accidents • Enjoy helping with food preparation Preschool- and School-Age Children: Development and Eating Behaviors – Social development • Younger children commonly dawdle during mealtime; older children are often in a hurry to finish and return to their activities. • They imitate the food preferences of others. • Older children are often eager to try new foods. Supporting Positive Feeding Practices • Adults are responsible only for providing nutritious foods and meals for children to eat. – Follow MyPlate recommendations (Figure 16-1; http://www.choosemyplate. gov). – Consider variety, flavor, texture, color, and temperature when planning meals (Figure 16-2 and 16-3). Supporting Positive Feeding Practices • Children determine what they will eat and how much food they are willing to eat. – Serving sizes should be appropriate for child’s age. – Expect skipped meals and picky eating. – Avoid letting children fill up on milk if they won’t eat. • Respecting these roles reduces power struggles and helps children develop trust and independence. Supporting Positive Feeding Practices • Children are in the process of establishing lifelong eating and activity habits, so it is important to: – Be a positive role model. – Encourage children to try new foods and activities. • Watch this beautiful story for children by clicking on the link: http://cdc.gov/CDCTV/KneesLifted/index.html Children with Special Feeding Needs • Children who have developmental delays or medical conditions may also have special feeding needs. They: – May not recognize when they are hungry or not be able to express hunger – Have a tendency to overeat – Are more prone to choking – May be taking medication that interferes with nutrient absorption or increases the need for certain nutrients – Have an increased tendency toward food allergies Mealtime Environments • Time meals and snacks so children will feel hungry. Encourage physical activity to improve their appetite. • Consider the ease of eating foods, especially with younger children. • Warn children 5 to 10 minutes before a meal so they have time to anticipate and prepare for a change in activity. Mealtime Environments • Maintain regular times for meals. • Make mealtime a pleasant and relaxed experience. • Don’t use food as a reward. • Acknowledge desirable eating habits. • Provide chairs, tables, and eating utensils that are comfortable for children to use. • Involve children in meal preparation. Snacks • Snacks can make a positive contribution to children’s diets by supplying nutrients that may be lacking. • Snacks should be nutrient-dense foods. High-fat, highsugar items fill children up but also replace essential nutrients. • This is a good time to introduce new foods for children to try. • Avoid letting children eat whenever they are hungry. Health Problems Related to Eating Habits • • • • • Dental caries Obesity Hypertension Cardiovascular disease Diabetes (Type II) ©2012 Cengage Learning. All Rights Reserved. TV and Food Choices • The average child in the United States watches over 40,000 television commercials every single year. – Children watch as many as 200,000 food ads between 2 and 12 years of age • Advertisers spend over $12 billion each year on advertising aimed specifically at the young people in America's households. ©2012 Cengage Learning. All Rights Reserved. TV’s Double Negative • Time spent in sitting and watching television might be better spent in physical activity that would increase calorie needs and thus make meeting nutrient needs for the child easier. • The majority of foods advertised during children's programs are for calorie-dense foods high in sugar and/or fat. – High sugar, high fat, empty calorie foods • Cereals, cookies, drinks – Ads for fast foods – Less than 5% of ads are for healthy foods ©2012 Cengage Learning. All Rights Reserved. Case Study • Maria, age 7 years, is new to the community and has recently enrolled in your after-school program. She and her parents speak Portuguese, but very little English. The other children are intrigued with Maria and her “different” language. They eagerly attempt to teach her some English words by pointing to and repeating the names of foods and objects with exaggerated clarity. Although Maria seems to enjoy their attention and is responding to their efforts, you (teacher) are concerned that she still eats very little during snack time. Case Study Questions 1. Why should you be concerned that Maria is not eating? 2. What steps can you take to learn more about her family’s food preferences? 3. Where might you access information about foods and food preferences native to Maria’s culture? 4. Where might you access materials to aid in Maria’s care and your ability to communicate with her family? 5. Where might you locate an interpreter for assistance?