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Healthy eating for children (7 years and older) and youth

By eating the right amount and type of food recommended in Canada's Food Guide, children and teens can get the nutrients they need to grow and thrive, including calcium which is especially critical during these bone building years.  Offer healthy foods most of the time and set a good example by eating well yourself, including breakfast.  Continue to provide meals and offer snacks at predictable times when the kids are home.  Involve your kids with the planning and cooking of meals to increase their acceptance of a wide variety of foods. 

Tween and teen years are about autonomy and identity. Teens want to make their own food choices. Environment plays a big role so keep quick and healthy snacks on hand.   It is important that the healthier choices are the easiest choices.

Eating together

When we eat together at least once a day we eat less fast food and more nutritious foods such as vegetables and fruits. Kids gain better social and learning skills too.

Eating together doesn’t have to mean the whole family has to sit down together to a fancy meal. The important thing is that at least one adult and a child, or two or more adults sit down and eat together.

Preparing, cooking, and eating together provides us with time to connect in our busy lives.  It is a time for parents to role model healthier choices and to “check in” with kids.  

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As a step towards reconciliation, Interior Health acknowledges the land that we live, work, and play on as the traditional territories of the Dakelh Dene, Ktunaxa, Nlaka’pamux, Secwepemc, St’at’imc, Syilx and Tsilhqot’in peoples. It is with humility that we continue to strengthen our relationships with the First Nation, Métis, and Inuit peoples of the interior.
MoH     PCQO