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Children: Diet and Emotions

Updated on March 14, 2015
A Happy Home, A Healthy Life Style, a Wholesome Diet grows  Healthy Children
A Happy Home, A Healthy Life Style, a Wholesome Diet grows Healthy Children

Stress and Disease

Eating Behavior Starts Before Birth

Physician advise mothers who are carrying babies that they need to begin to eat a Balanced Healthy Diet to help the growing baby inside them grow in strength. For me, it meant no more “Caffeine.” I drink tea, coffee and soda, but not when I was pregnant. Then, I drank fruit juice [watched the sugar content] and water. Why? Because everything a mother consumes through her mouth, her nose, and skin, is also consumed by the growing baby inside her. At the time, I was confused as many probably are as to what a “Balanced Healthy Diet” might be. Doctors refer patients to “Nutritionists” to chat about nutrition because they have limited face-on-face time with a patient. My doctor didn’t refer me to anyone, and I was determined to figure out what I should do so I went to the bookstore and purchased about 20 books on baby. So for 20 days I read horror stories of what not to do, and began to understand how to begin providing nutrition to my child.

We had the discussion of “Breast” vs. “Bottle” Feeding. This choice makes a real difference if mommy is prone to smoking, taking drugs [prescription or illegal], or drinking. Breast-feeding becomes a health risk for the baby if the mommy is exposed to health hazards in their workplace, has bad teeth, chronic acid indigestion, or other poor health issues. If however, mommy is in good health, follows the guidelines for Balanced Diet, is calm and happy when baby feeds, it is not such an issue. Many feeding issues begin in the infant.

Once our bouncing bundle arrives, he / she is something like that Taoist Sage sitting on the mountainside allowing the environment to envelop him. Sensing everything around him in silent meditation. Unless misfortune has struck, baby has all his senses: sight, hearing, tasting, touching, and smelling. With these senses, baby feels his environment and makes a mental note of what is happening. If parents offer happy alternatives to lying in the crib, by changing babies surrounding to calm or happy outdoor and indoor activity with the family, baby will grow calm, happy and feel loved. A healthy baby will most likely have traits that his father and mother have genetically that cause predispositions. So, if dad or mom is allergic to some food it is better to wait until later to experiment with baby. If dad or mom is allergic to bees, better bring along a bee pack when you have an outdoor picnic, “just in case.”

Whether or not to use processed baby food is another worry. Everyone wants to provide the appropriate nutrition and whether baby food is in a can, organic, or home made is a choice everyone has to make. When our parents or grandparents were babies there was no canned baby food, so do we need to use it? My baby doctor suggested that we use the blender and provide baby food that we eat; we eat a “Balanced Diet” with all the “Essential Nutrition.” We also chose “soy milk,” and provided a supplemental baby vitamin for our baby because we wanted to make sure our baby had all the necessary food elements to grow strong and healthy. Note: there are many practitioners who believe that if an infant is fed adequate “wholesome foods” the only supplement they need is Vitamin D. The Council on Foods and Nutrition in the American Medical Association believe that B-complex would have some value for children with special problems. They also suggest that children be introduced to a wide variety of “wholesome foods.” Here is one of many Recommended Daily Dietary Allowances for Children:

Age - Weight - Height - Calories - Protein

1 to 2 - 26 - 32 - 1100 - 25

2 to 3 - 31 - 36 - 1250 - 25

3 to 4 - 35 - 39 - 1400 - 30

4 to 6 - 42 - 43 - 1600 - 30

6 to 8 - 51 - 48 - 2000 - 35

8 to 10 - 62 - 52 - 2200 - 40

From age 10, the Daily Dietary Allowance changes slightly because of sex.

Here is a chart for the Daily requirements for Girls:

Age - Weight - Height - Calories - Protein

10 to 12 - 77 - 56 - 2250 - 50

12 to14 - 97 - 61 - 2300 - 50

14 to 16 - 114 - 62 - 2400 - 55

16 to 18 - 119 - 63 - 2300 - 55

Here is a chart for the Daily requirements for Boys:

Age - Weight - Height - Calories - Protein

10 to 12 - 77 - 55 - 2500 - 45

12 to14 - 95 - 59 - 2700 - 50

14 to 18 - 130 - 67 - 3000 - 60

Remember the “Daily Dietary Allowances listed is just one of many charts available. The majority of plans include, “Food Groups.” This way has proven to be a successful leaning tool to help families assure that their children’s bodies acquire all the “wholesome elements” of a healthy diet. If you are interested in learning the most recent information check out the Department of Agriculture website. There is a personal and individual chart you can make for your child, print, store and track their progress for free. Go to

Understanding food is indeed an important step in developing Life Style Eating Patterns, but there is another element often forgotten. I mentioned it before. When a baby eats they need to be in a happy, calm environment. This is true for the growing child as well. Stress and binge eating begins early. Why do you think you go grab candy or smoke when you are upset? Because you have been programmed to stimulate your mouth when in a hostile environment. Too many individuals pick the dinner table as the time to correct children. This hostility is associated with food and it leads to a variety of lifetime eating disorders

Remember, that baby is mapping his environment using his senses. He or she does not need to understand what you are talking about; he or she will understand the TONE you use when you are speaking. He or she will then associate that tone with an activity he or she is doing at that time. So your simple “discussion” at the table will cause joy and exploration of foods children eat, if it is pleasant and calm, or sour the food you have prepared for the children to eat, if it is hostile! Request, if you live in a marriage or relationship where yelling, throwing food, or tossing over the table with the prepared food is waiting to be consumed, if this is a constant thing, and you have not chosen to get therapy or escape, do not subject your children to that behavior when they are eating. Two wrongs do not make a right! Feed your children at a different time. Let them watch TV and eat as long as it is a funny, calm show or listen to peaceful music. Surely a more peaceful and positive Eating Environment will help the child to grow fit and healthy with not only “wholesome food” but emotionally. On the other hand, constant stressful and negative eating environments will lend itself to an unhealthy eating lifestyle. Ever go to a restaurant where you sit next to a crying baby. Is it easy for you to eat when that child keeps crying? Or, how about when the parents of that crying child start yelling at each other blaming the other for the disruption. Isn’t that pleasant? Well the little ones are no different from you. Make their eating experience a joy and they will eat more “wholesome foods” choose a variety of healthy foods and live a healthier Life Style.

Tips on Raising Healthy Children


Submit a Comment
  • Galadriel Arwen profile imageAUTHOR

    Galadriel Arwen 

    7 years ago from USA

    Whole grains are a great food source. Now, the 3-5% of the population want us to believe that wheat and whole grains are not good for us and make us fat. Gullible and hurtful to the farmers who grow wheat and whole grains and the bodies that are not allergic [require gluten free]and benefit from them in so many ways!

  • profile image

    Alan Greer 

    7 years ago

    I believe that avoiding ready-made foods could be the first step so that you can lose weight. They could taste good, but highly processed foods currently have very little vitamins and minerals, making you try to eat more only to have enough energy to get throughout the day. When you are constantly having these foods, converting to whole grain products and other complex carbohydrates will assist you to have more energy while feeding on less. Good blog post.

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