Nutrition Tips

General Tips about Nutrition

  • Provide healthy breakfast before each school day.
  • Serve healthy school snacks (whole grain, vegetables, fruits, cheese).
  • Promote intake of fruits and vegetables.
  • Provide information and skills to make healthy food choices.
  • Ensure opportunity for family meals.
  • Restrict intake of energy dense, micronutrient-poor food (Packaged food).
  • Restrict intake of sugars like sweetened soft drinks.
  • Limit exposure to marketing practices (ads, limit TV).

Assessment of child’s nutritional status

A child’s nutritional status can be assessed by assessing their growth using

  • Growth Charts
  • BMI

Growth charts:  Growth charts are a standard part of any checkup, and they show health care providers how kids are growing compared with other kids of the same age and gender. They also allow doctors and nurses to see the pattern of kids’ height and weight gain over time, and whether they’re developing proportionately. The growth chart is an extremely important method of screening children for malnutrition.
Boys and girls have different growth charts because they grow at different rates and differences in the onset of puberty.

Body Mass Index:  Body Mass Index (BMI) is an important measurement used to determine whether your child is overweight, underweight, or at an ideal weight for his or her age.

The body mass index formula is easy to determine. It’s a simple calculation that takes into account your weight and height.

  • The imperial BMI formula = Weight (lbs) x 703 ÷ Height (Inches²)
  • The metric BMI formula = Weight (KG) ÷ Height (Metres²)

The weight categories for children are defined as follows:

  • Underweight is a BMI of less than the 5th percentile.
  • Normal weight is a BMI from the 5th percentile to below the 85th percentile.
  • Overweight is a BMI above the 85th percentile to below the 95th percentile.
  • Obese is a BMI greater than or equal to the 95th percentile.