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Serving Sizes: Mom, You Are Over Feeding Me!

Submitted by on April 1, 2013 – 12:55 pmNo Comment

Proper Serving Sizes for Kids

Proper Serving Sizes for Children

by Sonja Kabell, Founder of Creating Healthy Lifestyles

“Mom,  you are over feeding me,” said my eight year old son, Thomas, “You are making me fat.”

What? Making you fat. What does this kid know? I am the weight management consultant.  He doesn’t know what he is talking about.

After looking more closely at what I had served him…Well, he was right.

As parents, we tend to over serve our kids a lot of times and don’t realize it. Even though I do feed my family a well balanced diet – fruit, vegetable, lean meats, whole grains and low fat dairy – I tend to serve them the portion size that an adult would eat. To add insult to injury, I insist that they eat all the food on their plate. I am over feeding them.

What Does One Serving Size Look Like?

Time for a portion check. We must remember our kids have tiny tummies and their serving size should be accordingly.  What does that need to look like?

  • 1 cup of leafy vegetables are 1/2 of cooked vegetables is one serving size of vegetables
  • A medium apple, orange or pear that is the size of a tennis ball is a serving of fruit
  • 1 fist size for grains, rice or bread
  • A deck of cards is equal to a portion of meat, poultry or fish
  • 1 cup of milk or 3/4 cup of 100% fruit or vegetable juice equals one serving
  • A stack of four dice equals 1 serving of cheese

Now that we have an idea of the portion size, time for a quality check as well. We need to make sure we are feeding our kids the right type of food which is not always to most convenient foods. I know, I know, you are busy, right? However, it is very important to give your child the same nutrition that is required for a healthy lifestyle as an adult. Their little bodies will struggle to process over processed, high fat, low nutrient, unhealthy foods.  Childhood obesity is on the rise and it is directly due to children eat too many unhealthy calories and not getting enough exercise. Just like adults, kids need eat healthy foods.

Number of Servings for Kids

According to the USDA, a 6-11 year old child needs to following number of servings per day:

  • 1 serving of protein
  • 2-3 servings of milk and milk products (chose lower fat options)
  • 5 servings of vegetables
  • 3 servings of fruit
  • 6 servings of grain (chose whole grains instead of white flour)
  • LIMIT high fat food, processed food, fast food, sugars and sodas.
  • Water should be consumed without limits

Making a healthy food choices is the better choice. Not only for the parents but for the kids! Help your kids start with good habits that will last a lifetime.

For more information, go to the choosemyplate.gov or contact me for more information at www.sonjakabell.com.

Sonja KabellSonja Kabell is a Weight Loss and Wellness Consultant, and  Founder of Creating Healthy Lifestyles. You can reach Sonja at 972-935-6484. Visit the Creating Healthy Lifestyles Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/creatinghealthylifestyles.

 

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