When it comes to the topic of food, nutrition, and raising our children there is a lot of information out there and it can be overwhelming when trying to figure out where to start.
This month I thought I’d share some of my favorite go to nutrition resources for raising healthy eaters from birth to beyond. I’ve broken this post down into some of the most popular topics regarding children and nutrition. As a mom raising two girls and registered dietitian, I hope you find these resources helpful regardless of where you are in nourishing your growing family.
Raising Healthy Eaters
Let’s face it, feeding children and teaching them about proper nutrition can be overwhelming. Fearless Feeding by Maryann Jacobsen and Jill Castle, provides balanced information for different stages of a child’s life. Written by two family nutrition experts, this book covers everything from when to introduce solids to helping a vegetarian teen make the right choices. Fearless Feeding is an excellent resource for any parent wanting to end food struggles while nourishing their growing family!
Another excellent resource for parents looking to expand their knowledge of good nutrition and increase their confidence in the kitchen is Child of Mine: Feeding With Love and Good Sense by Ellyn Satter.
Infant and Toddler Nutrition
One of my favorite books for new moms is Born to Eat by Wendy Jo Peterson, MS, RDN and Leslie Schilling, MA, RDN. These savvy ladies combine the concept of baby-led weaning with the non-diet approach to nourishing your child. This anti-baby food style of weaning involves introducing babies to table foods that the rest of the family is eating. Healthier children, parents, and families are fostered by teaching children to honoring self-regulation and focus on a whole food foundation.
If you are interested in learning more about Baby Led Weaning, check out these free resources from baby-led weaning specialist, Katie Ferraro, Registered Dietitian Nutritionist and mom of 7 (yes, you read that correct – 7 kiddos under the age of 5!)
Your Child and Their Weight
If your child is struggling with his or her weight, Your Child’s Weight: Helping Without Harming by Ellyn Satter, MS, RD, LCSW, BCD is an excellent resource. Ellyn conquers the topic of overweight/obesity in childhood by teaching parents to earn their children’s trust. She guides parents in how to nourish and feed, while learning how to trust their child in regulating their own intake. I recommend using this book as a supplement to working with your child’s physician and a registered dietitian.
Teens and Adolescents:
When it comes to talking about food and nutrition with teens and adolescents, I recommend skipping the diet and calorie talk and instead introduce the topic of mindfulness and intuitive eating. Two of my favorite resource are: Eating Mindfully for Teens and Intuitive Eating Workbook for Teens. These books help to teach teens how to eat more mindfully while address the topics of stress eating, overeating, emotional eating, and binge eating. The concepts of mindfulness and intuitive eating are actually good for any and every age because it focuses on reconnecting you with your body, honoring hunger and fullness cues and cultivating a positive body image.