Your child means everything to you, including his or her growth, development, and overall health. At Children's Healthcare Associates in Chicago, IL, new parents and pediatricians partner in raising strong kids who have vibrant health. Proper nutrition helps children achieve developmental milestones, learn well, and grow as they should.
The current state of childhood nutrition
The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) says that American children and adolescents typically consume 40 percent of their daily calories from junk food--soda, pizza, whole milk, ice cream, and more. The result? Childhood obesity is rampant, affecting more than 18 percent of American youngsters. As these children grow into adults, they carry an increased risk of diabetes, heart disease, hypertension, tooth decay, anemia, osteoporosis and more.
Important information for your child
New and veteran parents alike may wonder how to provide the right nutrition for their children. Specifically, the CDC recommends consuming a variety of fruits and vegetables, whole-grain bread and cereals, low-fat proteins and dairy products and adequate hydration. That means plenty of water every day. The CDC elaborates that water helps adolescents and children think efficiently, positively impacting their ability to learn.
Additionally, parents should offer regular meals (breakfast, lunch, and dinner) three times a day. Routine eating helps regularize blood sugar and energy levels, stabilizes weight, and improves overall mood and mental health.
Parents, you can model good nutrition by eating healthy foods and avoiding constant calorie awareness or talking about being too fat or too thin. Improve family earing habits gradually by introducing healthier food choices one by one.
For new parents of newborns...
At Children's Healthcare Associates in Chicago, IL, our professional team helps new parents navigate the rapidly changing nutritional needs babies have. They answer questions about breastfeeding, bottle feeding, when to transition to solid foods, proper quantities, growth and development, fussy eaters and more.
If you are an expectant parent, get the prenatal care you and your baby need. Good nutrition begins before your little one officially enters the world.
So, contact us with any questions you may have. Our two convenient locations are open Monday through Saturday. For the Chicago, IL, location, phone (773) 348-8300. In Northbrook, IL, call (847) 480-1500.