Pre-school children

Key points  

  • Toddlers and pre-school children are growing rapidly and are active so their energy requirements are high relative to their body size.
  • An adequate intake of protein, calcium, iron and vitamins A and D is important during this time.
  • While pre-school children can start to adopt some of the principles of the eatwell plate, a diet which is low in fat and high in fibre may not supply enough energy for a young child.
  • An eating pattern based on small meals and snacks selected from the four main food groups should be encouraged.
  • A healthy family approach to diet and lifestyle should be encouraged, as food preferences are often established during this early stage of life.