ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

What to Feed My 2 Year Old?

Updated on August 10, 2012
Make food fun for your toddler to get them eating and enjoying a variety of nutritious foods and setting up healthy habits for life!
Make food fun for your toddler to get them eating and enjoying a variety of nutritious foods and setting up healthy habits for life! | Source

Feeding Young Children

Toddlers at this age are moving on from their baby eating habits and more towards a diet like your own. It is important to introduce new flavors and textures to the child as food preferences are set early in life and it is important to develop their taste for healthy foods now so that they develop healthy habits.

Toddler Self Feeding

A two year old should already have explored self feeding and it is important to continue to give them the opportunities to use these skills. At this stage, it is important that you take a back seat and let your child feed themselves.

Be patient with your toddler, being a picky eater is all a part of growing up. Don't force foods on them and offer them a variety of nutritious foods. Sometimes they might refuse to start off with and then happily eat away once everyone else does.
Be patient with your toddler, being a picky eater is all a part of growing up. Don't force foods on them and offer them a variety of nutritious foods. Sometimes they might refuse to start off with and then happily eat away once everyone else does. | Source

How to Get Your Child to Eat

Most toddlers like to use their new-found independence. At meal times you can let them assert their independence by giving them some sense of control. At this age, the child is also learning hunger and fullness cues and it is important to help them understand this while also setting boundaries.

Remember, with a two year old, you are still the one who makes the decisions on the foods that they will eat however, your child will decide how much to eat and whether to eat at all. It is important to encourage healthy eating at this stage in order to develop good eating practices for the rest of their lives.

While skipping meals is a difficult concept for many parents and carers to understand, but it is important not to push food on a child that is not hungry as they are learning to respond to their own internal hunger cues. At the opposite of this situation, it is also important that you don't let your child eat on demand all day long either.

Low Fat Milk is an excellent source of Calcium and Vitamin D for your 2 Year Old
Low Fat Milk is an excellent source of Calcium and Vitamin D for your 2 Year Old | Source

Toddler Nutrition - What to Feed a Toddler

Calcium and Vitamin D

Toddlers require calcium and vitamin D to help build strong bones. Milk is an excellent source of these vitamins. For children under the age of two, it is recommended that they drink whole milk (full fat), however, once your child reaches two it is often recommended that you give them low fat milk - though this depends on the child and you may want to talk with your doctor before doing so. Limit their milk intake to around 16-24 ounces per day.

Iron

Iron intake is important for toddlers as iron deficiencies can develop. Iron deficiencies will affect their physical, mental and behavioral development and can lead to anemia, so it is important to ensure they consume enough iron. To prevent iron deficiency, increase the child's intake of iron rich foods such as red meat, poultry, fish, beans and iron fortified foods (eg. Cereal and Breads). If you are concerned that your child may not be eating enough iron, consult your doctor.

Foods Toddlers Should Not Eat

Choking Hazards
While your child is getting older and learning their boundaries, accidents can still happen, for this reason it is important that you avoid foods that could present choking hazards and supervise your child while eating. Foods that may present a choking risk include popcorn, peanuts, whole grapes, hard candies, chewing gum, tough meats etc.

Be mindful of introducing new foods to your toddler and watch for signs of a reaction such as puffy eyes and lips
Be mindful of introducing new foods to your toddler and watch for signs of a reaction such as puffy eyes and lips | Source

Food Intolerance and Food Allergies in Toddlers

Toddlers are at a higher risk of developing allergic reactions when introducing new foods, especially if there is a family history of food allergies or allergy related conditions such as asthma, eczema, rashes etc. For this reason, be mindful when introducing new foods and watch for any potential reactions and talk to your doctor if you have any concerns. If a sibling or family member has a food allergy such as peanuts or shellfish, you may choose to delay introducing these foods until they are 3+ years old.

How Much Should a 2 Year Old Eat?

Toddlers have little stomachs and therefore cannot eat the volume of food that an adult can. For this reason, it is important to give them foods that are packed with nutrients so that they can grow strong and healthy.

At 2 you should offer your child 3 meals a day and 2 to 3 healthy snacks. Maintaining a regular schedule of meals and snacks is essential when developing healthy food practices. Know that toddlers ate known to skip meals.

VIDEO: Healthy Food Choices for a 1- to 2-Year-Old

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No comments yet.

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)