Food and Nutrition Guidelines

Food and Nutrition Guidelines
Food and Nutrition Guidelines
for Pre-School Services
Food and Nutrition Guidelines for Pre-school Services
Foreword
As Minister of State at the Department of Health & Children with a special responsibility for
Children, I am delighted to publish these Food & Nutrition Guidelines for Pre-schools.
These guidelines are relevant to pre-school children aged 0-5 years and are intended as a resource
and guide for all relevant stakeholders; carers, parents and pre-school inspectors.
This booklet also fulfils the important commitment to “sufficient, nutritious and varied food,
available to a pre-school child”, under the Childcare Regulations 1996.
As outlined in the guidelines, the early years are critically important for the formation of good habits
and a positive attitude towards healthy, varied eating. Research findings show a correlation between
a wide range of positive health behaviours and the consumption of fruit and vegetables, amongst
school children, and healthy eating is essential for long-term health benefits.
I am grateful for the on-going efforts and commitment demonstrated by Health Promotion
Departments, Community Dietitians, Health Board Personnel and key support agencies nationwide,
who ensure the dissemination and fulfilment of the healthy eating message.
Brian Lenihan T.D.
Minister of State at the Department of Health and Children
with a special responsibility for children
1
Food and Nutrition Guidelines for Pre-school Services
Food and Nutrition Guidelines for Pre-school Services
Table of Contents
TITLE
PAGE NO.
Table of Contents
2
Summary of Key Recommendations
4
Introduction
5
PLAN HEALTHY VARIED MEALS
24
Sample menu
25
Budget
25
TABLE 7 : Sample 5 day menu
26
TABLE 8 : 5 day menu plan
27
Main meal suggestions
28
Checklist for menu planning
29
Section Three: Important Issues
Section One: Children Less Than 1 Year old
30
Food refusal and fussy eating
30
FOSTER GOOD DENTAL HEALTH
32
Tips for healthy teeth and gums
32
PREPARE FOOD IN A CLEAN AND SAFE WAY
33
START WITH HEALTHY EATING FOR INFANTS
6
Food purchase
33
Breastfeeding
6
Food storage
34
Supporting the breastfeeding mother
6
Kitchen hygiene
34
Expressed breast milk
7
Food preparation
35
Formula feeding
7
Re-heating food
35
Feeding infants
8
Safety
35
Timing of feeds
8
Starting foods in addition to breast milk/formula feeds
8
Checklist for infant feeding
10
TABLE 1 : Guidelines for Introducing Complementary Foods
11
Section Two: Children From 1 to 5 Years Old
2
HELP CHILDREN LEARN TO EAT
Section Four: Healthy Eating Policy
DEVELOP A HEALTHY EATING POLICY
37
TABLE 9: Sample Pre-School Nutrition Policy
38
Food for special occasions
39
Rewards and treats
39
OFFER A WIDE VARIETY OF FOODS
12
Outside catering companies
39
Food Pyramid
12
Learn through food
39
Suggestions to give variety
13
Food related activities
40
TABLE 2 : Snacks
16
Physical activity is important too
41
OFFER SUITABLE SIZED PORTIONS
17
TABLE 3 : Recommended number of daily servings and portion size
17
OFFER HEALTHY FOOD CHOICES AND TOOTH-FRIENDLY DRINKS FREQUENTLY
18
Drinks
18
TABLE 4 : Milk drinks
19
TABLE 5 : Non-milk drinks
20
ACCOMMODATE SPECIAL FOOD NEEDS OF INDIVIDUAL CHILDREN
21
Peanut allergy
21
Community Nutrition & Dietetic Services
43
Vegetarian diet
21
Pre-school Inspection Teams
44
Vegan diet
22
Consultation Group
47
Food customs of different cultures
22
Other Contacts
48
TABLE 6: Some food customs
23
Acknowledgements
49
Conclusion
42
Section Five: Further Information
3
Food and Nutrition Guidelines for Pre-school Services
Food and Nutrition Guidelines for Pre-schools:
Summary of Key Recommendations
Food and Nutrition Guidelines for Pre-school Services
Food and Nutrition Guidelines for Pre-school Services
0 – 5 Years of Age
Introduction
A child’s early years are important for their future health and well being, and good nutrition during this
time lays a healthy foundation for all of childhood and life. These Food and Nutrition Guidelines for Preschool Services have been developed in response to the objectives and goals of the National Health
Promotion Strategy 2000 - 2005 and the National Children’s Strategy - Our Children - Their Lives (2000).
• Start with healthy eating for infants
The aim of these Guidelines is to provide practical information to pre-schools on a varied and healthy
diet for children from 0 to 5 years of age in a pre-school setting, in the context of promoting health
and the Child Care Regulations 1996, which state:
• Offer a wide variety of foods
• Offer suitable sized portions
• Offer healthy food choices and tooth-friendly drinks frequently
“A person carrying on a pre-school service shall ensure that suitable,
sufficient, nutritious and varied food is available for a pre-school child attending
the service on a full-time basis.”
Article 26 (1) of the Child Care Regulations 1996
Children’s food needs for different daycare periods
Children spend varying amounts of time in Pre-school services and so they are there for a different number of
meals. Food should be offered to young children at least every 3 hours.
• Accommodate special food needs of individual children
• Plan healthy, varied meals and snacks
• Help children learn to eat
Children in full day care (more than 5 hours) Offer at least two meals and two snacks, for example – breakfast, snack, lunch and snack. One meal should be
a hot meal. If children are there for a long day, an evening meal may also need to be provided. If a main meal is
not provided for some reason, ensure that parents know this so they can offer suitable meals at home.
Children in day care for up to 5 hours maximum per session Offer at least two meals and one snack, for example – breakfast, snack and lunch. It is not necessary to have a
hot meal, however the meal should include at least 1 serving from each of the four main shelves of the Food
Pyramid.
Children in day care up to 3.5 hours per session Offer one meal and one snack – for example, snack and lunch. This group may also include after-school care.
• Foster good dental health
• Prepare food in a clean and safe way
• Develop a healthy eating policy
The food served in pre-school services is of key importance in the young child’s health, particularly for
children in full day care. Some areas of nutritional concern for young children are;
• ensuring appropriate energy intake for growth and development,
• the prevention of iron deficiency anaemia,
• adequate intake of vitamin C and calcium.
The pre-school service provides an excellent setting for promoting positive habits and attitudes to healthy
eating and being active as part of a healthy lifestyle. The provision of nutritious food positively enhances
not only a child’s health, but also allows the child to take full advantage of the learning opportunities
provided in pre-schools.
These Guidelines were developed by Community Dietitians in consultation with the Health Promotion Unit
of the Department of Health and Children and a broad range of key stakeholder groups. The Pre-School
Guidelines are intended as a standard resource for Pre-School Managers and Pre-School Inspection Teams.
They can also be used for in-service health board training of pre-school workers.
The Community Nutrition and Dietetic Service and the Pre-School Inspection Team in each health board
area can provide further information and assistance in using this document, in implementing the
Guidelines and in supporting pre-schools in developing a healthy eating policy for the pre-school.
Current contact details are in Section Five.
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Food and Nutrition Guidelines for Pre-school Services
SECTION ONE : CHILDREN LESS THAN ONE YEAR OLD
Start with healthy eating for infants
Breastfeeding
Breast milk is the best food for infants. Breast milk is an ideal blend of nutrients, which provides
everything a baby needs for growth and development in the first six months of life. Fully breastfed
babies do not need any extra water.
Breast milk is also easy for the baby to digest, so the young baby may want more frequent, smaller
feeds than formula fed babies. Be prepared to offer expressed breast milk whenever the baby seems
to want it.
Breast milk contains antibodies. These protective factors help to protect the baby from infections
such as coughs, colds and tummy upsets, as well as long-term health benefits. Continuing to
breastfeed may help protect the baby from illnesses they might pick-up from other children in the
pre-school.
Food and Nutrition Guidelines for Pre-school Services
Expressed breast milk
• Breast milk can look thin and slightly blue when fresh. It may turn pale yellow after freezing. When
left to stand, the cream will rise to the top. Shake the container before using the milk.
• If milk storage bags are used, it may be easier to cut off the bottom corner with a washed scissors
to form a spout rather than untie the top of the bag.
• Keep track of how much milk the baby is taking and ask the mother to bring extra as needed.
Some mothers bring extra milk to keep in the freezer at the pre-school in case the baby is extra
hungry one day.
• Frozen milk should be dated and the oldest milk used first. Let the mother know when
the stock of milk in the freezer is running low.
• Do not re-freeze thawed milk.
• Some mothers prefer their breastfed baby to be fed with a cup rather than a bottle and teat.
Discuss this with the mother and ask her to show you how she wants her baby fed.
• When the baby starts on solid foods, expressed breast milk can be used to mix into cereal or other
foods.
STORAGE GUIDELINES FOR EXPRESSED BREAST MILK
Fresh Milk
At room temperature (250C) : 6 hours
Refrigerated: 8 days
Fully breastfed babies have stools that are loose and yellowish with very little smell. They may have
small frequent bowel movements or large bowel movements less often.
Frozen Milk
Breastfeeding enhances the emotional and physical well-being of both mother and baby. Many
mothers find that breastfeeding after work helps them to get re-connected to their baby. Carers
should support breastfeeding mothers and encourage them to continue providing breast milk for
their baby, as appropriate, while in childcare.
Supporting the breastfeeding mother
• Provide a space that is private, warm and has a comfortable chair for the mother who
wishes to breastfeed her baby at the pre-school.
• Some mothers may wish to feed just before leaving the baby or on arrival to collect the
baby. Some mothers may come to feed the baby at lunchtime, particularly when the baby
is very young.
• If the mother wishes to feed the baby at the pre-school before going home, avoid giving
the baby a full expressed milk feed too soon before the going home time.
6
In a freezer compartment inside fridge: 2 weeks
In a freezer part of a fridge-freezer: 3 months
In a seperate deep freeze: 6 months
Thawed in a refrigerator: 24 hours (do not re-freeze)
Formula Feeding
Infants who do not receive breast milk should be given an appropriate infant formula. Wheydominant formula are generally recommended for infants who are not breastfed. Parents may
change to casein dominant formula to make the baby go longer between feeds. However, there is
no firm evidence that these milks are more suitable.
Follow-on formula can be used for infants over 6 months of age or they can continue with regular
infant formula. There is no need for a follow-on formula if children have a diet containing sufficient
iron-rich foods. Breast milk or formula milk should be the main drink for infants for the first year.
Encourage parents to bring the baby’s feeds already prepared for the day. If the feeds are prepared
at the pre-school, ideally this should be done in an area kept only for preparation of feeds. The
instructions on the tin should be carefully followed using freshly boiled (and cooled) water and the
correct amount of powder. Use feeds and bottles only for the baby to whom they belong. Do not
add anything to the bottle such as baby rice or rusks.
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Food and Nutrition Guidelines for Pre-school Services
Feeding Infants
• Babies should be held and have warm physical contact from an attentive adult while being fed.
• Whenever possible, the same person should feed the baby at each feed.
• Babies should never be left with propped bottles as this is both dangerous and does not meet their
emotional needs.
• Feeding bottles and expressed breast milk containers should be marked with the child’s name and
date.
o
• Keep milk feeds covered and in the fridge at 5 C. Store milk in the inside of the fridge not in the
door shelves, which get warmer.
• Do not microwave the milk. Warm by standing in a jug of hot water or in a bottle warmer. Do not
leave in the warmer for longer than necessary.
• Defrost frozen breast milk by standing it in a jug of hot water for about 15 minutes. Shake as it is
thawing. Only defrost as much as is needed for that feed.
• If milk is heated in a jug of water, ensure the jug is in a safe place where children cannot get
scalded by the water if it spills.
• Discard unfinished breast or formula milk after 1 hour. Let the mother know if the baby is leaving
a lot of milk at feeds so she can bring the milk in smaller quantities.
• Bottles and teats should be thoroughly washed after use and sterilised until the baby is 12
months old.
Timing of feeds
Infants follow their own individual patterns of feeding and sleeping. It is recommended that these
patterns be followed rather than try to adapt the baby to the pre-school schedule.
Watch the baby for feeding cues or signals such as restlessness, sucking on fists and mouthing.
Crying is a late signal for feeding.
Babies vary in the amount they take at a feed. Watch the baby for signs they have had enough. Do
not force them to take more than they want or to finish the bottle.
Starting foods in addition to breast milk or formula feeds
When to start solids?
As the infant grows, a more varied diet is needed to meet his/her growing needs. Solid foods
are added to complement the breast milk or formula – complementary feeding. Milk remains
the major part of the infant’s diet throughout the first year and continues to be important in
the diet after that time.
Breastfeeding provides all a baby needs for the first six months. Further research needs to be
carried out to indicate the best time to add complementary foods for an infant that is formula
fed. In Ireland, the current recommendation is 4-6 months for the introduction of
complementary foods in formula-fed babies. Some parents like to introduce small quantities
of food from 4 months, but this is not essential. Foods other than breast milk or infant formula
should not be started before 4 months.
Food and Nutrition Guidelines for Pre-school Services
Young children need regular small meals and nutritious snacks daily, this may include up to 2-3 small
meals and 2-3 snacks. Solids are not recommended earlier than 6 months for breastfed infants and
4-6 months for formula-fed infants, as they can displace the infant’s intake of breast milk or
formula. For example, if a very young baby is fed a few spoons of pureéd apple, he/she may not
have room in their stomach to take sufficient amounts of milk. Early introduction of foods other
than breast milk or formula, to the baby, may increase their risk of childhood obesity, wheezing or
allergies, as they are difficult for the very young baby to digest.
For babies who are breastfed and those who are formula fed, it is recommended that
complementary foods be introduced by the end of six months of age. Introducing complementary
foods too late can put the baby at risk of iron deficiency and of not receiving enough energy to grow
adequately.
Adding complementary foods also encourages the development of motor skills, dexterity,
exploratory behaviour and social development.
How to start?
TABLE 1, (page 11) outlines guidelines on suitable foods, consistency, and suitable drinks for
infants.
• First foods should be pureéd and of a soft runny consistency, without lumps, and should
be introduced one at a time, leaving a few days between the addition of each new food.
Introduce the spoon to the baby’s mouth gently and slowly so that the baby can suck the
food from the spoon.
• Iron containing foods should be started from six months including meat and iron-fortified
cereals, as iron is needed at this age.
• Cereals (gluten-free to the age of six months), fruits or vegetables are also suitable first
foods. Use expressed breast milk, infant formula or cooled boiled water to mix foods.
• Infants and young children have high-energy needs. Full-fat dairy products should be used
until age 2. However, high fat and high sugar processed foods should be used sparingly.
• In families where there is a confirmed diagnosis of allergy or atopy, breastfeeding should
be encouraged and medical advice provided on the introduction of complementary foods,
especially potentially allergenic foods.
• If the introduction of complementary foods is delayed past six months or foods are
excluded, on the parents advice, the adequacy of an infant’s diet may need to be assessed
by a Dietitian.
• During this period of introducing complementary foods, babies are learning the skills of
eating, so be patient. Gradually as they perfect their skills, more of their diet will come from
foods and less from breast milk or formula.
• Breast milk or infant formula remain the central part of the diet, until the baby is eating
solid foods well, or is about 12 months old.
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9
Checklist for Infant feeding
PRACTICE
10
1.
Breast feeding encouraged and supported
• a place to breastfeed available
• mothers encouraged to bring breast milk
2.
Parents encouraged to prepare their baby’s feeds
3.
Expressed breast milk or formula labelled with child’s name
and date
4.
Expressed breast milk or formula stored in the fridge at 5oC or below
5.
Unfinished expressed breast milk or formula discarded after 1 hour
6.
Bottles heated in a warmer or safely in a jug of water
7.
Bottles, teats and feeding utensils sterilised for infants
under 1 year
8.
Infants held while being bottle fed by an attentive adult
9.
All food spooned out of the jar, can or saucepan into a separate
dish before feeding
Minced or mashed to a less fine texture
Continue to give breast milk/formula milk
Cooled boiled water (if necessary)
Well-diluted unsweetened pure fruit juice
at mealtimes. Dilute 1 measure of pure
juice to 4 or 5
measures of cooled, boiled water
Peanuts
Unpasteurised cheese (will state made with
‘raw milk’ on label)
Undercooked eggs
Pureéd and of a soft consistency without
lumps. Start with a thin pureé and make
thicker as baby learns to take food from a
spoon
Breast milk
Formula milk
Cooled, boiled water (if necessary)
Gluten containing foods e.g. bread, pasta,
wheat, rye, oats, barley & breakfast cereals
Yogurts, fromage frais, cheese
Peanuts
Eggs
Consistency
Suitable Drinks
Foods to be avoided
Peanuts
Unpasteurised cheese
Undercooked eggs
Continue to give breast/formula milk
Cooled, boiled water (if necessary)
Well-diluted, unsweetened pure fruit juice at
mealtimes
Chunky mashed texture, moving to food
chopped into bite-size pieces. Serve some
finger foods that can be picked up for selffeeding
Food as previous column, but you can now Increase the variety of foods in the baby’s diet
Most family foods are now suitable
include:
Well cooked eggs
Other breakfast cereals (containing gluten)
Bread and pasta
Cheese (pasteurised) e.g. grated Cheddar
Yogurt
Pasteurised cow’s milk can be used in small
amounts in foods
• Always stay with baby when eating.
Pureéd meat, peas & beans
Pureéd fruit and vegetables
Pureéd potato
Gluten-free cereals e.g. baby rice pureéd with breast milk, formula milk,
boiled water or water from cooking
vegetables
11. All preparation of milk feeds and foods carried out in a clean
and safe manner
NO
STAGE 3
• Avoid using packet sauces, soups or stock cubes, as the salt content is high.
9-12 months
• Avoid adding sugar or salt to food.
STAGE 2
• Avoid adding food to baby’s bottle.
Over 6 months
• Allow children to use their fingers to eat food and help to feed themselves.
STAGE 1
• Introduce drinks from a feeding beaker or cup from about six months.
Introducing complementary foods
REMEMBER
Suitable Foods
10. Unused food in jars, cans or containers stored according to
manufacturers guidelines
YES
TABLE 1 : Guidelines for introducing complementary foods
Food and Nutrition Guidelines for Pre-school Services
Food and Nutrition Guidelines for Pre-school Services
11
Food and Nutrition Guidelines for Pre-school Services
Food and Nutrition Guidelines for Pre-school Services
Suggestions to Give Variety
SECTION TWO : CHILDREN FROM 1 TO 5 YEARS OLD
Offer a wide variety of foods
Variety means eating a wide selection of foods. Every food has some nutritional goodness to offer
in the form of energy, protein, fat, vitamins or minerals.
The Food Pyramid
The Food Pyramid on pages 14 & 15 is a visual guide to a healthy diet. Detailed information on the
recommended number of daily servings and portion sizes are included in TABLE 3, (page 17)
The Food Pyramid is made up of five food shelves:
• The wide bottom shelf contains foods that form the basis of all meals - the bread, cereals
and potato group. These foods provide energy for the child to grow and play. Children
need 4-6 or more servings of food from the bread, cereals and potato shelf each day.
• The next widest shelf is the fruit and vegetable shelf. These foods give vitamins and
minerals for good health. 2-4 or more servings each day is the target for this shelf. Frozen
fruit or vegetables are just as good as fresh. Remember, potatoes are not on this shelf.
• The next shelf is the milk, cheese and yogurt shelf. The foods on this shelf provide
calcium for strong bones and teeth. Milk and milk products also give protein and energy.
Children need 3 servings each day from this shelf. Butter and cream are not on this shelf while these foods do come from milk, they are very poor sources of protein and calcium.
Butter and cream belong to the small top shelf of the Food Pyramid.
• The fourth shelf has meat, fish and alternatives such as beans. These foods provide
protein for growth and iron to help the body function well. 2 servings from this shelf is the
target each day.
• The small top shelf of the Food Pyramid contains foods such as sweets, chocolate, biscuits,
cakes, fizzy drinks and savoury snacks, like crisps. This shelf is small to show these foods
should only be eaten in small amounts, occasionally. Filling up on top shelf foods spoils the
child’s appetite for more nutritious foods. This shelf also includes butter, oils and fats. While
young children are growing very fast and need some fat in their diet to provide energy for
their growth and development, too much fat can cause health problems. It is important
that the foods in this shelf are used in moderation in the pre-school.
Breakfast
• Wholemeal or white bread, scones or toast with butter or margarine.
• Porridge or breakfast cereals with milk. Choose iron-fortified cereals. Choose types without sugar,
honey or chocolate coating. Cereals with nut pieces are not suitable for young children because
of the risk of choking. Read the list of ingredients carefully.
• Fruit or diluted unsweetened pure fruit juice. Dilute one measure pure juice to 4 or 5 measures
water.
• Avoid tea for under fives.
Main meals
• Boiled potatoes, pasta, rice, bread or other foods from the bottom shelf of the Food Pyramid
provide the foundation for the meal. Include a food from this shelf at every meal, every day.
Wholemeal breads can be used for sandwiches – one slice wholemeal and one slice white bread
makes a colourful sandwich for children.
• A variety of fresh or frozen vegetables will add colour and texture to the meal as well as providing
important vitamins and minerals. Offer a vegetable or fruit at the main meal every day.
• Fresh fruit should be offered frequently. Use whole portions, half portions or fruit slices depending
on the child’s ability to handle the fruit pieces and their appetite.
• Offer a milky food such as yogurt, custard, cheese or a drink of milk.
• A dish or recipe containing peas, beans, lentils, soya products or quorn makes a protein-rich meal
for vegetarian children. Other children will enjoy it too.
• Eggs can be used for meals also - scrambled, boiled, omelette or quiche. Ensure they are
well cooked.
• Use lean meat in cooking. However, if there is any visible fat, remove this before cooking.
• Fish is good for children too. Oily fish such as sardines and mackerel are also a good source of
vitamin D for building healthy bones. Make sure all bones are removed from the fish.
• Avoid adding salt in cooking and at the table.
IRON
Too little iron in the diet causes anaemia, which can affect the child’s development. Good
sources of iron are liver and red meat (beef, lamb or pork), chicken and sardines. Iron is also
found in eggs, cooked lentils and beans, green vegetables, dried prunes, apricots, raisins and
iron-fortified breakfast cereals. Iron from non-meat sources is harder for the body to use. Give
foods or drinks that are high in vitamin C – for example orange segments or juice – at the same
meal, to help iron absorption (see pages 21 & 22). Tea and coffee contain tannin which reduces
the absorption of iron. These are not suitable drinks for young children.
12
13
Food and Nutrition Guidelines for Pre-school Services
Food and Nutrition Guidelines for Pre-school Services
A wide variety of foods from each of the four main shelves of the Food Pyramid should be included
every day, so the child will receive the variety of nutrients needed for growth and good health. There
are a variety of choices within a food group or shelf; for example, a child could choose bread instead
of breakfast cereal, or potato instead of pasta. Encourage children to try different food tastes.
DRINK PLENTY
OF WATER
SPARINGLY
There are different food guidelines for children and adults. Adults are encouraged to eat more fibre
and less fat, this results in a diet that is lower in energy and more filling. This advice is not suitable for
very young children as their stomachs are small and high fibre foods will fill them too quickly. After two
years of age, children can gradually eat lower fat foods, such as low-fat (semi-skimmed) milk and foods
with more fibre, provided the child is a good eater and has a varied diet.
VERY SMALL AMOUNTS
2
MEAT, CHICKEN, PEAS, FISH, BEANS, &
ALTERNATIVES
3
MILK, CHEESE
& YOGURT
4+
FRUIT, FRUIT JUICE &
VEGETABLES
6+
14
The Food Pyramid servings above are suitable for children from 5 years of age.
the guidelines recommended, according to the child’s
BREAD, CEREALS,
POTATOES, RICE & PASTA
For younger children, start with smaller and fewer servings and increase up to
own growth and appetite. See TABLE 3 (page 17)
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Food and Nutrition Guidelines for Pre-school Services
Food and Nutrition Guidelines for Pre-school Services
Snacks
• Snacks are important to help meet the energy needs of children.
• Remember that sugary snacks and sugary drinks spoil the appetite and take the place of healthier
more nutritious foods.
• Furthermore, sugary snacks and sugary drinks are not good for a child’s teeth. If they are given
occasionally, offer with a meal - not between meals.
• In TABLE 2, (page 16) offer snacks from the JUICY, THIRSTY, SMOOTH, CRUNCHY and CHEWY
snack choices to ensure a wide variety of foods in the child’s diet.
• Dried fruits (currants and raisins) used in recipes are a good alternative sweetener to sugar for the
older children. They are not recommended as between meal snacks because of the sugar content
and the risk of dental caries.
• Whole nuts and popcorn are not recommended as snacks for children under 5 years because of
the risk of choking.
• For younger children, take care to remove pips and seeds from fruit to help prevent choking.
Juicy
Snacks
Thirsty Snacks
Smooth
Snacks
Crunchy
Snacks
Chewy Snacks
Orange
Milk
Banana
Pineapple
chunks
Home-made
soup
Yogurt –
natural or fruit
Raw vegetable
slices, sticks or
wedges –
try them with
yogurt dip
Bread rolls, baps, pitta,
baguettes
Plum
Check Drinks’
TABLE 4+5,
(pages
19 + 20)
Milk pudding
Tomato
Seedless
grapes
Apples
Home-made
milkshake
using yogurt,
milk and fruit
Toast
Breakfast cereal
(without sugar,
honey or
chocolate
coating)
The table below outlines the recommended numbers of daily serving sizes for different age groups
.
TABLE 3 – RECOMMENDED NUMBER OF DAILY SERVINGS AND PORTION SIZE
FOOD SHELF
1-3
YEARS
3-5
YEARS
Meat, Fish and
Alternatives Shelf
2 small
servings
2
servings
An average sized pork or lamb
chop or homemade beef burger
2 slices (60g) of lean roast/boiled/grilled/ovenbaked meat or chicken/turkey
Medium sized fillet of fish or 2 fish fingers
2 eggs
9 dessertspoons of baked beans, peas
or lentils
3
servings
3
servings
1 glass of milk (1/3 pint)
1 carton of yogurt
30g of hard cheese
2 cheese slices
1 bowl of milk pudding (100g)
2-4
servings
4
or more
servings
1 medium sized fruit (50g) e.g. apple, orange
or banana
1/
2 glass of pure unsweetened fruit juice,
diluted well with water
3 dessertspoons of stewed or tinned fruit in
own juices or fresh fruit salad
3 dessertspoons chopped raw, salad or
cooked vegetables
Small bowl of home-made vegetable soup
4
servings
4-6
or more
servings
1
1
1
1
1
3
Iron – to help
healthy blood flow
Milk, Cheese and
Yogurt Shelf
TABLE 2 - SNACKS
Pear
Offer suitable sized portions
Scones –
plain, fruit or
wholemeal
Cheese slices,
cubes or strings
Cold meat slices
Dairy foods help
bones to grow
Fruit and
Vegetable Shelf
Fruit and veg to
help you glow
Breads, Cereals,
and Potato
Shelf
Plenty of these to
GO! GO! GO!
SERVING SIZE
slice of bread (white or wholegrain)
small bread roll
small bowl of breakfast cereal
small scone (plain,wholemeal or fruit)
medium potato (60g) – boiled or baked
dessertspoons of boiled rice or pasta (80g)
Crackers
(without salt
on top)
These serving sizes are only a guide. Children’s appetites vary. If the child eats
all the serving, offer some more food. For young children, start with smaller
and fewer servings and increase up to the guidelines, according to the child’s
own growth and appetite.
16
17
Food and Nutrition Guidelines for Pre-school Services
Food and Nutrition Guidelines for Pre-school Services
Offer healthy food choices and tooth-friendly drinks frequently
Children are not “little adults”
Children grow and develop at a fast rate and they need more energy for their size than adults
do. Therefore, snacks between meals are important to help children to meet their energy
needs for growth.
TABLE 4 : Milk drinks
Type of Drinks
MILK
Breast milk
A mother should be encouraged to continue breastfeeding as long as
she wishes. Breastfeeding with suitable complementary foods into the
second year continues to benefit the baby and mother.
Infant or followon formula
Infant formula can continue to be used. Follow-on formula is a modified
cow’s milk suitable for infants from about 6 months of age and
marketed to discourage parents from feeding children cow’s milk as the
main drink under 12 months of age. There should be no need for infant
or follow-on formula after 12 months if children have a diet containing
sufficient iron-rich foods.
Specialised infant
formula
Formula such as soya formula or other specialised formula should only
be used under strict medical supervision.
Whole cow’s milk
Whole cow’s milk is suitable as the main drink for most children from 12
months of age.
Low-fat
(semi-skimmed)
cow’s milk
Not suitable as the main drink for children under 2 years of age. Young
children need some fat in their diet. Low-fat (semi-skimmed) milk can
be introduced gradually after the age of 2 years, provided the child is a
good eater and has a varied diet.
Skimmed (fat
free) cow’s milk
Not suitable as the main drink for children under 5 years due to the low
energy content.
Goat’s or sheep’s
milk
Not suitable for children under 12 months of age due to inappropriate
nutrient content. Although these drinks may be seen as less allergenic
than cow’s milk or providing special nourishment, there is no scientific
evidence to support these claims.
Flavoured Milk
Usually sweetened in some way and therefore best given with meals,
rather than between meals. Do not offer under 12 months of age.
Soya drinks
(other than
infant formula)
Not suitable for children under 12 months. If children are given soya
drinks, make sure it’s under medical supervision, that the drink has
added calcium and is only given at mealtimes because of the high
sugar content.
Young children need regular small meals and nutritious snacks daily, this may include up to 2-3 small
meals and 2-3 snacks daily TABLE 2, (page 16).
Drinks
• Fluids are important for children - up to 6 cups of fluid should be encouraged each day, such as
water or diluted pure fruit juice.
• Water and milk are the most tooth-friendly drinks to have between meals. Encourage children
to drink water if they are thirsty. Water quenches thirst and does not damage teeth.
• Water from a water softening system can contain high levels of sodium (salt) and should not be
given to young children.
• Water for infants less than twelve months should be boiled and cooled before use. In some areas,
the water may need to be boiled for older children also. All water from mains or group water
supply is tested regularly. If you are concerned about your tap water, discuss it with the
Environmental Health Officer in your health board.
• If sweet drinks are used occasionally, offer these drinks only with meals and in small amounts
so children do not fill up with drinks rather than eating solid food.
• It is recommended that drinks be given by cup rather than from a feeding bottle over 12 months
of age.
• Continued bottle-feeding after 1 year may lead to excess
milk consumption, reduced capacity for solid foods and
thus “faddy eating”. It may also contribute to dental
problems such as “Nursing Bottle Syndrome”(see page 32).
• Constipation can be a result of a low fluid intake.
Encourage up to 6 cups of fluid per day. Physical activity
can help prevent constipation.
SUITABILITY
Check TABLE 4 & TABLE 5, (pages 19 and 20)
for suitable drinks.
NOTE: Children should not be put to bed with a bottle as this
can cause “Nursing Bottle Syndrome” (see page 32).
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Food and Nutrition Guidelines for Pre-school Services
TABLE 5 : Non-milk drinks
Type of Drinks
NON-MILK
Tap Water
Bottled Water
Pure
Unsweetened
Fruit Juice
Fruit Drinks, Juice
Drinks and
Squashes
SUITABILITY
Encourage water as a drink frequently during the day.
Can contain high levels of some minerals such as sodium, which can be
harmful to young children. If used, choose a bottled/mineral water with
less than 20mg of sodium (Na) per litre. This will be on the label. Fizzy
water in large amounts can harm teeth, as it is acidic.
Useful source of vitamin C. Children should be encouraged to have a
half glass with breakfast or their main meal to help the body absorb
iron. Fruit juices contain natural sugars and are acidic, therefore, for
dental health it is recommended that fruit juices are diluted (1 part juice
to 4-5 parts water) and given with meals.
Should be avoided as they contain sugar and acid, both of which are
harmful to teeth.
Sugar-free drinks and squashes contain artificial sweeteners and are
generally not recommended for infants and young children. If given,
they should be diluted with plenty of water (1 part squash to 8 parts
water) and used only in moderation.
Fizzy Drinks Minerals
Should be avoided as they contain a lot of sugar and acid, both of which
are harmful to teeth.
‘Diet’ minerals contain artificial sweeteners instead of sugar and should
also be avoided. Even without sugar, they are harmful to teeth because
of their acidity.
Tea and Coffee
20
Not suitable drinks for young children as they contain tannin, which
interferes with iron absorption. Caffeine is a stimulant and is not
suitable for children.
Food and Nutrition Guidelines for Pre-school Services
Accommodate special food needs of individual children
If the child needs a special diet, it is the responsibility of the parent or guardian(s) to inform the Preschool Manager of this, so that arrangements can be made to accommodate the child’s
requirements. Some special diet requirements such as gluten-free (coeliac), diabetic, nut-free or milkfree, can be quite complex. The parent should provide a copy of the diet sheet prepared for the child
by a Dietitian. Lists of prepared foods are available to give information on products that are free of
a particular item such as milk or gluten. Ask the parent for further details or information as needed.
If a food allergy is suspected, the parents should be encouraged to discuss this with their doctor. It
is unwise to restrict children’s food choices without professional assessment and individual
information.
Peanut allergy
Peanut allergy is usually severe - sensitive individuals may even react to peanut dust. Care should be
taken to prevent accidental consumption of food containing nuts or nut products or food that has
come into contact with them. Preparing food for peanut allergy sufferers in a designated area may
help. Peanut butter should be avoided and many prepared foods can contain nuts or nut flour.
Careful checking of food labels is necessary. Children with severe food allergies are advised to carry
identification.
It is recommended that children with a family history of asthma, eczema, hay fever or food allergy
should avoid peanuts and peanut products until the age of 3 years. Whole nuts are not
recommended for children under 5 because of the risk of choking.
Vegetarian diet
A vegetarian diet does not contain meat, poultry or fish. It does not include animal products such as
beef or pork fat and gelatine. It can include milk and milk products and eggs. Cheese may be excluded
if it contains animal rennet as the setting agent.
Discuss the particular food requirements with the child’s parent. Some people may use the word
vegetarian, but will actually eat fish and chicken. A well-planned and varied vegetarian diet is nutritionally
adequate and allows normal growth and development. Children on a very restricted or limited diet may
benefit from breast or formula milk over 1 year of age, as advised by their Doctor or Dietitian.
Nutrient-rich foods such as milk, cheese, yogurt and eggs can provide protein, vitamin A, calcium and
zinc. Vegetable sources of protein, for example quorn, tofu and pulses (peas, beans and lentils), should
be provided at each meal. See suggestions in the menu plans TABLE 7, (page 26).
It is important to ensure that the child receives enough dietary iron from a meat-free diet. Good nonmeat sources of iron are eggs, cooked lentils and beans, green vegetables, dried prunes, apricots,
raisins and iron-fortified cereals. Iron is better absorbed if the child has foods or drinks that are high in
vitamin C – for example citrus fruits or juices – at the same meal as eggs, beans, grains or other
vegetable sources of iron and protein. Tea and coffee contain tannin and reduce the absorption of iron.
21
Food and Nutrition Guidelines for Pre-school Services
Food and Nutrition Guidelines for Pre-school Services
Increasing Iron Absorption
Non-Meat sources
of Iron
Eggs
Beans and lentils
Green vegetables
Dried fruit
Breakfast cereals
TABLE 6 : SOME FOOD CUSTOMS
Foods rich in vitamin C
+
Mandarins
Oranges
Kiwi fruit
Tomatoes
Pure fruit juice - diluted
More
=
FOOD
JEW
SIKH
MUSLIM
HINDU
BUDDHIST
Eggs
No
bloodspots
Yes
Yes
Some
Some
Milk/Yogurt
Not with
meat
Yes
Not with
rennet
Not with
rennet
Yes
Cheese
Not with
meat
Some
Some
Some
Yes
Chicken
Kosher
Some
Halal
Some
No
Mutton/Lamb
Kosher
Yes
Halal
Some
No
Beef
Kosher
No
Halal
No
No
Pork
No
Rarely
No
Rarely
No
Fish
With scales,
fins and
back bone,
no shellfish
Some
Halal
Some
No
Nuts, Pulses,
Fruit &
Vegetables
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
iron
absorbed
Vegan diet
A vegan diet contains no animal products at all. These diets need careful planning and vitamin
supplementation. Parents of children on vegan diets should discuss their child’s nutritional needs
with a Dietitian. This information can then be discussed with the Pre-School Manager accordingly.
Food customs of different cultures
Some ethnic communities may have different food customs from those the pre-school staff are used
to. The food customs may involve what foods are eaten, how the foods are prepared, what
combinations of foods are used or when particular foods are eaten. Periods of celebration and
celebration foods may bring new events to the pre-school.
There may be periods of fasting, though very young children do not normally fast. However, the
meals eaten at home may be different during fasting periods, such as a main meal late at night or
breakfast very early. Check with parents if the child’s food intake at the pre-school needs to be
adjusted during this time. Always consult with the parents of the child so that their individual food
preferences and customs can be catered for.
Some food customs are listed in TABLE 6, (page 23). This is not a comprehensive list and there may
be differences in food choices between families of the same ethnic community. If the exact source
of the food is not known, such as the source of the fat in a product, families following a particular
practice may wish to avoid this food.
Source: Multicultural Foods In Britain. Leeds Metropolitian University. Feb 1993. Teaching
Pack and Video by June Copeman, Sarah Hirst, Pinki Sahota.
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23
Food and Nutrition Guidelines for Pre-school Services
Plan healthy varied meals and snacks
Planning a menu in advance helps to ensure that children are offered nutritious varied meals. This
section brings together the guidelines from the previous sections into menus. The aim is to:
• Include foods from each of the four main shelves of the Food Pyramid so the child will receive
the variety of nutrients needed for growth and health.
• Include foods from the bread, cereal and potato shelf; the fruit and vegetable shelf; the milk,
cheese and yogurt shelf; and the meat and alternatives shelf. Choose servings relevant to the
child’s age. TABLE 3, (page 17) for more information.
• Offer suitable foods and drinks frequently. Young children need 2-3 small meals and 2-3 snacks
each day.
• Respect parents’ wishes and accommodate any special dietary needs of the children. See pages
21-23.
Children’s food needs for different daycare periods
Children spend varying amounts of time in Pre-School Services and so they are there for a
different number of meals. Food should be offered to young children at least every 3 hours.
Children in full day care (more than 5 hours) Offer at least two meals and two snacks, for example – breakfast, snack, lunch and snack.
One meal should be a hot meal. If children are there for a long day, an evening meal may
also need to be provided. If a main meal is not provided for some reason, ensure that
parents know this so they can offer suitable meals at home.
Do not assume that the child has had breakfast. Work together with parents to ensure that
children have breakfast either at home or at pre-school and also that they had an evening
meal either at pre-school or at home. This is important to ensure that the child is not over
or underfed.
Children in day care for up to 5 hours maximum per session –
Offer at least two meals and one snack, for example – breakfast, snack and lunch. It is not
necessary to have a hot meal, however the meal should include at least 1 serving from each
of the four main shelves of the Food Pyramid. See TABLE 3, (page 17).
Children in day care up to 3.5 hours per session Offer one meal and one snack – for example, snack and lunch. This group may also include
after-school care.
CHECK TABLES 2, 4 & 5 (PAGES 16,19 & 20 RESPECTIVELY) FOR HEALTHY SNACKS
AND DRINKS CHOICES AND USE THE FOOD PYRAMID (PAGES 14 & 15) AS A GUIDE
FOR SERVING SIZES, FOR DIFFERENT AGES, FOR ALL MEALS.
Food and Nutrition Guidelines for Pre-school Services
Cooking methods
Use a variety of cooking methods for the main dishes. Boil, stew, roast, oven-bake, steam, poach or
casserole rather than fry. Frying adds a lot of extra fat to the food so, therefore, try not to fry more
than once a week. Most foods suitable for frying can also be oven-baked.
Use monounsaturated oils (rapeseed/canola/olive) or polyunsaturated oils (sunflower/safflower) in
cooking and offer a choice of monounsaturated or polyunsaturated margarine or spread.
Colours, Textures, Tastes and Finger Foods
Food can be made to look more attractive to children by serving a combination of colours. Try
dividing the food into three or four defined areas of colour on a plate.
A combination of different textures is appealing to children. They will appreciate a variety of smooth,
crunchy, chewy foods TABLE 2, (page 16).
Children should be encouraged to try different food tastes on a regular basis. However, children may
not accept meals containing too many different or new flavours, so try and introduce new tastes,
one at a time.
Finger foods, for example slices of toast or bread, vegetable sticks and fruit chunks, can be provided
to encourage young children to feed themselves and try new foods.
Salt
Avoid adding salt in cooking and at the table. Restrict the use of packet soups, stock cubes, packet
sauces and other processed foods as they often have a high salt content. High levels of salt are
difficult for the child’s body to handle and can cause health problems.
Sample menu
A sample one-week menu is outlined in TABLE 7, (page 26), to offer guidance in providing
nutritious food for children in the various pre-school service day care periods. Encourage parents to
suggest healthy dishes to include in your menus.
A blank menu is provided to encourage the development of menus in accordance with guidance
provided throughout this document. This blank menu plan can be photocopied for each week’s
menu. TABLE 8, (page 27).
Budget
Healthy eating does not need to cost more money. Less processed foods are
generally less expensive than processed foods. Planning meals, buying fruit
and vegetables in season and paying attention to portion size can result
in cost-effective meals.
Children who attend the pre-school for other short periods generally do not have a
meal. However, choose nutritious snacks, for these children, from the suggestions on
TABLE 2, (page 16).
When planning the menus, in addition to nutritious food choices, also consider the
cooking method, colour, tastes and textures.
24
25
FRI
Evening Meal
5.00pm
Mid Afternoon
3.00pm
Lunch
12.00 - 1.00pm
Mid Morning
10.00am
Milk,
Tea brack or brown bread with
sliced bananas
Grilled/ oven baked fish,
Carrots, Boiled rice,
Semolina with sultanas,
Water to drink
Milk,
Cheese chunks with crackers
Baked beans with
brown or white toast,
Tomato slices or apple
Milk or water
Milk,
Kiwi Slices
Home-made beef burgers
(grilled)
Peas,
Oven chips
Mandarin
Water to drink
Milk,
Fruit Yogurt
Ham with wholemeal bread,
Pineapple pieces,
Milk or water
Milk,
Banana
Lentil and
vegetable lasagne,
Apple crumble,
Water to drink
Milk,
Brown Roll with
butter/margarine
Pizza with tomato
and cheese,
Pear,
Milk or water
Scrambled eggs,
Broccoli,
Mashed potato,
Chopped banana with
mandarin pieces,
Water to drink
Milk,
Scone with butter/margarine
Macaroni cheese,
Mandarin orange,
Milk or water
Lean mince meat and
vegetables made
into Bolognaise sauce,
Spaghetti/potatoes,
Custard with peach
slices in natural juice,
Water to drink
Milk,
Pear slices or
Carrot sticks
Tuna and tomato in brown/white
sandwich,
Banana,
Milk or water
Diluted pure unsweetened
orange juice,
Wholegrain wheat cereal
with milk,
Brown or white bread with
butter/margarine, jam/marmalade
Diluted pure unsweetened
orange juice,
Shredded wheat
cereal with milk,
Brown or white bread
with butter/margarine,
jam/marmalade
Milk,
Apple chunks
FRI
THURS
Milk,
Brown bread with
butter/margarine
Diluted pure unsweetened
Diluted pure unsweetened
orange juice,
orange juice,
Puffed rice cereal with milk,
Porridge with milk,
Brown or white bread with
Brown or white bread with
butter/margarine, jam/marmalade butter/margarine, jam/marmalade
WED
THURS
Diluted pure unsweetened
orange juice,
Cornflakes with milk,
Brown or white bread with
butter/margarine, jam/marmalade
TUES
WED
Breakfast
MON
TUES
TABLE 8 : 5 Day Menu Plan
MON
MEAL TIMES
Breakfast
Mid Morning
10.00am
Lunch
12.00 - 1.00pm
Mid Afternoon
3.00pm
26
Evening Meal
5.00pm
MEAL TIMES
TABLE 7 : Sample 5 Day Menu
Food and Nutrition Guidelines for Pre-school Services
Food and Nutrition Guidelines for Pre-school Services
27
Food and Nutrition Guidelines for Pre-school Services
Main meal suggestions:
Food and Nutrition Guidelines for Pre-school Services
Checklist for Menu Planning
• Pork pieces in a casserole with pineapple and rice.
The aim of the checklist is to:
• assist the Pre-school Manager in providing a healthy, varied diet for pre-school children;
• increase the number of healthy food choice options on the checklist that are available.
• Beef casserole with carrots and potatoes.
Read and tick what is being completed at present within the establishment.
• Homemade beef burgers (grilled or oven-baked), oven chips and vegetable or salad.
• Savoury mince with peas and mashed potatoes/pasta shapes.
• Roast chicken with carrots/parsnips and roast potatoes.
• Grilled fish pieces (without batter) with sweetcorn and rice.
PRACTICE
1.
Are 2-3 small meals and 2-3 snacks offered daily?
2.
Do main meals include a food from each of the four main shelves
of the Food Pyramid?
• Bread, cereals, potatoes, pasta and rice
• Fruit and vegetables
• Milk, cheese and yogurt
• Meat, fish and alternatives
3.
Does food look pleasing on the plate – different colours,
presentation?
4.
Are a variety of different tastes and textures of foods offered?
5.
Are parents given the opportunity to provide suggestions for the
menu?
6.
Are copies of the menu made available to the parents and/or
displayed in the pre-school in a prominent area?
7.
Do children with special dietary requirements receive the correct
foods, for example, in the case of food allergy?
8.
Are religious and/or cultural food requests observed?
9.
Is one person responsible for food and nutrition issues?
YES
NO
• Mince, lentils or chickpeas with stir fried vegetables and rice.
• Chicken pieces in a casserole served with broccoli and potatoes.
• Lasagne made with minced beef, chicken, lamb, fish or beans/lentils and vegetables.
• Lamb casserole with carrots and turnips and potatoes.
• Mince, lentil or bean shepherd’s pie with vegetable or salad.
• Tuna chunks with sweetcorn and carrots in a cheese sauce with pasta.
• Fish in white sauce served with rice and green beans.
• Salad with chunks of cooked fish or chicken, grated carrot, lettuce, chopped tomato, and
cooked pasta.
• Winter vegetable casserole with carrots, turnips and potatoes, topped with grated cheese and
breadcrumbs.
• Fish chunks, cauliflower and baked potato in a tomato sauce served in the baked potato shell.
• Chicken risotto served with a green vegetable.
• Mince made into a meat loaf served with mashed potatoes/pasta shapes and carrots.
• Stir-fried vegetables (mainly pulses) with rice/egg noodles.
• Macaroni and cheese served with sliced tomato or green vegetable.
• Wholemeal cheese and egg quiche with cooked green vegetable or salad.
• Vegetable burger with carrots & mashed potato.
• Cauliflower cheese with peas and boiled potato.
• Thick home-made soup - lentil, vegetable, chicken, served with a bread roll and cheese, follow
with some whole or sliced fruit.
Use lean meat with fat trimmed off or skimmed off after cooling.
Offer extra vegetables such as a bowl of quartered tomatoes,
carrot sticks or cucumber chunks.
10. Are food safety guidelines followed at every stage of food
provision?
If you answer No to any of the above questions, it may be a good idea to review your practice.
Refer to Contacts List, as appropriate, for more information, see page 43
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Food and Nutrition Guidelines for Pre-school Services
SECTION THREE – IMPORTANT ISSUES
Help children learn to eat
The pre-school years are a great time to help children form positive attitudes towards food and
physical activity and to develop good eating habits. Ongoing encouragement is necessary to
promote a positive body image.
During the weaning stages, infants are introduced to new tastes and textures. They will handle the
food as a way of learning about it and may tip it out of the bowl, smear it around the high chair
tray and play with it in other ways. This is all part of the learning experience.
Children may want to and should be encouraged to eat most food and drink by himself or herself
as they develop eating skills. Children aged 2-5 years should be allowed to serve themselves, under
supervision, during meals as this may encourage them to try different kinds of foods.
Child-sized utensils, crockery, tables and chairs may also make it easier for children to feed
themselves and learn to eat independently. However, all young children should be supervised while
eating and assisted or encouraged as needed. A feeding cup is recommended for children over 12
months rather than a bottle.
Carers should involve older children in helping to prepare food, and in helping to set and clear
tables. Use mealtimes as an opportunity to talk about food and where food comes from.
Encourage good table manners. Children can learn from the carer about table manners and can
practice their speaking and listening skills. Avoid distractions such as television. If a carer eats at the
same time as the children, it is important that they set a good example and be a role model by
following healthy eating guidelines, sitting at the table to eat and promoting a positive attitude to
healthy food.
Make the eating area colourful and bright. Give children sufficient time to eat. Do not force children
to eat.
Food refusal and fussy eating
Many children go through phases of refusing to eat certain foods or foods that are served in certain
ways. Sometimes they will eat very little at some meals. This is often a way of showing
independence and is very common in children under the age of five.
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Food and Nutrition Guidelines for Pre-school Services
Children can refuse food for a variety of reasons and these can include:
• Poor appetite
• Disliking the particular food
• Illness
• Limited food appeal
• Emotional upset
• Manipulative behaviour
Children’s health will not suffer if they do not eat a healthy, varied diet for a short while. If you think
a food fad is becoming a problem, then discuss this with the parents. The parents can talk to their
Doctor, Public Health Nurse, Practice Nurse or Dietitian.
DO
✓ Serve meals at regular times so children know when to expect food.
✓ Make mealtimes fun.
✓ Children often follow the example of adults so carers should sit and eat with the children where
possible.
✓ Keep the Food Pyramid on the wall of the eating room in the pre-school and regularly include new
foods from the shelves. Introduce new foods in small portions and on several occasions.
✓ Watch for high intakes of snacks or drinks especially milk, juice or squash and reduce if interfering
with appetite.
✓ Remember that children have only little tummies and fill up easily. Keep portions small and offer
more as needed.
✓ Watch for an “off” day becoming an “off” week. Children’s appetites are not constant. If you are
concerned it may be important to write down what a child eats during the week and report back
to parents/guardians.
✓ Make food look interesting - colours, taste and textures are very important.
✓ Be prepared to offer the food in another form, for example, pasta with the sauce beside it rather
than on top of it.
✓ Allow the child to eat with other “good” eaters whenever possible.
✓ Praise when food is eaten.
✓ The child should feed him/herself, if possible. Also offer finger foods.
✓ Take time over meals and talk to children about different foods. Give them time to eat without
being rushed.
✓ When it is obvious that no more food is going to be eaten, remove the food.
DON’T
✗ Don’t force a child to eat or to clear their plate of food.
✗ Don’t get upset with the child.
✗ Don’t criticise the child in front of other children.
✗ Don’t bribe with sweet foods or other foods you know the child will eat as this gives a wrong
message.
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Food and Nutrition Guidelines for Pre-school Services
Foster good dental health
It is important to care for children’s teeth from the very start. Both tooth decay and tooth erosion
are common in young children. Prolonged use of a bottle can result in ‘Nursing Bottle Syndrome’,
where the teeth decay from the prolonged contact with the milk or juice in the bottle. Introduce a
cup or beaker from about 6 months and aim to stop bottle feeding from 12 months of age.
Tooth decay in first teeth can be very painful and can affect the development of permanent teeth.
Tooth decay is linked with the frequency and the amount of sugar contained in the foods taken.
These foods include table sugar, sweets, honey, cakes, chocolate, biscuits, bars, soft drinks and
squashes.
If sugary foods and drinks are provided, it is important that they should be given with meals rather
than between meals. Many snack foods contain sugar and can cause tooth decay so it is important
to choose wisely. Refer to TABLE 2, (page 16) for healthy snack choices.
Tooth erosion is a wearing away of the enamel. It is caused by high consumption of acidic foods,
fizzy drinks and undiluted fruit juice. Children who drink fizzy drinks or fruit squashes once or more
a day are twice as likely to suffer from tooth erosion as children who consume these drinks less
often. Using a straw for these drinks can reduce the damage as the drink goes towards the back of
the mouth. However, limiting these drinks is a better solution.
Children should be encouraged to use their teeth to chew. Give foods such as raw apples, carrots,
crusts, toast and other foods in a form that encourages chewing.
Tips for healthy teeth and gums
DO
✓Reduce the frequency and the amount of contact that sugary foods and drinks have with teeth and
offer with meals - not between meals.
✓Encourage calcium rich foods, for example, milk, cheese and yogurt. These foods will protect and
help to build strong teeth.
✓Give milk and water as between meal drinks, these are the most tooth-friendly drinks.
✓Dilute pure unsweetened fruit juice to a ratio of 1 part juice to 4-5 parts water and offer with meals.
✓Encourage a feeding cup, that doesn’t have a teat, from 6 months of age. This is important,
particularly for children who take high sugar drinks, for example, soya infant formula.
✓It is recommended that bottle-feeding should be stopped from the age of 12 months.
✓Frequent use of paediatric medicines containing sugar can promote tooth decay – use sugar-free
alternatives.
✓Contact a dental practitioner for additional information on dental hygiene.
✓Play games and tell stories that encourage children to see visits to the dentist as normal checks for
their oral health, not as frightening or painful.
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Food and Nutrition Guidelines for Pre-school Services
DON’T
✗ Do not give sweet drinks in baby’s bottle – this can result in tooth decay.
✗ Do not dip the bottle teat in anything.
✗ Do not put food such as rusks in baby’s bottles.
✗ Children should not be put to bed with a bottle as this can cause ‘Nursing Bottle Syndrome’
✗ If a child uses a soother, do not dip it into sugar or sugary drinks (honey, jams or syrup) to
encourage the child to use it.
✗ If giving sugary foods and drinks occasionally, try to give with or straight after meals, not between
meals.
✗ Avoid acidic drinks,TABLE 5, (page 20) on drinks.
✗ Avoid sugary snacks, TABLE 2, (page 16) on snacks.
Reducing the intake of soft drinks would have a major impact on the sugar content of children’s
diets and on children’s dental health.
Prepare food in a clean and safe way
It is essential that food provided to pre-school children is stored, prepared and presented in a safe and
hygienic environment. Extra care is needed for infants and young children as they may have a lower
resistance to food poisoning. Food poisoning can be a serious illness for infants and young children.
Bacteria and viruses cause food poisoning. You cannot tell by looking at food, smelling it or tasting it if
the food contains these germs. These germs multiply very quickly at room temperature. Keep cold foods
in the fridge or freezer and keep hot foods very hot while waiting to serve.
Some raw foods contain bacteria. Thorough cooking will kill these. However, germs can be transferred
from raw foods to other foods by hands, chopping boards, cloths or utensils. Use separate boards and
utensils and wash thoroughly between uses. Wash hands frequently. In some cases children may bring
food from home to eat while they are in childcare. It is helpful if the childcare setting has its own food
& nutrition policy. This can be given to parents in helping them in choosing and preparing food they
send from home.
Further information in relation to food safety and hygiene may be obtained from the environmental
health department of the local health board. The Food Safety Authority of Ireland has produced several
useful publications in relation to food safety and hygiene in storing food, food preparation and when
shopping. Courses are also available.
Food Purchase
• Buy food that is clean and undamaged.
• Buy food from a reputable source where it is stored in a clean and safe manner.
• Read the labels on foods. The ingredients are listed by order of weight with the largest
amount first. Check for added sugar and salt as well as animal products and nuts if you
wish to avoid these.
• Note the ‘use by’ or ‘best before’ date. Eat it, cook it, freeze it or throw it out by the date.
• Once the food is opened, use it as a fresh food. The ‘use by’ date applies to unopened food.
• Keep cold foods cold on the way home from shopping or check that delivery trucks do so.
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Food and Nutrition Guidelines for Pre-school Services
Food and Nutrition Guidelines for Pre-school Services
Food Storage
Food Preparation
• Do not leave perishable food at room temperature for more than two hours. Perishable
food brought from home, including sandwiches, should be kept in a fridge or cool place
below 5°C.
• Separate chopping boards should be used for raw meat and fish, for cooked foods and
for raw fruit and vegetables.
• Insulated cool boxes, or a cool box with cool packs, should be used for carrying food
when taking children on trips or outings.
• Cool leftovers as quickly as possible. Cover and, when steam has evaporated, put in the
fridge. Avoid putting large quantities of warm food in the fridge as it raises the
temperature of the whole fridge.
• Cover foods in the fridge.
• Eggs should be kept in the fridge, separate from other foods.
• Raw meat and raw fish should be stored on a different and a lower refrigerator shelf to
other foods. Check the raw food is not dripping.
• Food stocks should be rotated and food beyond its ‘use by’ date discarded.
• Do not leave food in cans or packaging once opened, empty into another container for
storage.
• Do not re-freeze foods.
• Fruit and vegetables should be washed well and peeled. Root vegetables such as carrots
and parsnips should always be peeled and topped and tailed.
• Discard the skins and cuttings from food preparation to prevent contamination of the
prepared product.
• Do not leave food around the kitchen uncovered.
• Eggs given to babies or toddlers should be cooked until both the yolk and the
white are solid.
• Do not use unpasteurised milk or milk-based products, such as cheese and yogurt, made
from unpasteurised milk. If a parent brings in goat’s/sheep’s milk for their child, check
with the parent if the milk needs to be boiled.
• If you are serving food from a can or a jar and the child is unlikely to eat all the contents,
spoon a portion into a separate dish or container before serving it to the child. Store any
unused portions according to the manufacturer’s instructions. If food is served straight
from the jar and the child does not finish it, the remainder should be thrown away.
• Wash fridge frequently.
• Thaw frozen food completely before cooking unless instructions state “cook from
frozen”. Thaw in the fridge rather than at room temperature.
Kitchen Hygiene
Re-heating Food
• Work surfaces should be thoroughly cleaned with disinfectant after each meal
preparation.
• If food is to be eaten warm, it should be re-heated until piping hot and then cooled
down before serving. Re-heat food only once.
• People who are unwell should not prepare food for others.
• Avoid keeping food hot for long periods.
• Cover cuts and sores with waterproof dressings.
• Tea towels and dishcloths should be boil-washed daily.
• Stir foods, if possible, during re-heating to ensure all parts are heated.
• Do not heat a baby’s bottle in a microwave as hot spots can occur and burn the baby’s mouth.
• Carers should always wash their hands with soap and water before preparing food,
between handling raw and cooked foods, before helping children to eat and after
toileting children or changing nappies or blowing their nose.
34
• It is also important that children are taught basic hygiene themselves, for example, not
eating food that has fallen on the floor, washing their hands with soap and water before
meals and after going to the toilet.
Safety
• Uneaten food should be removed from the table and disposed of. Any milk remaining in
a baby’s bottle after one hour should be disposed of.
• Children must be supervised while in high chairs.
• Never leave children or infants alone while they are eating in case they choke.
• High chairs must have a safety harness.
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Food and Nutrition Guidelines for Pre-school Services
Food and Nutrition Guidelines for Pre-school Services
SECTION FOUR – HEALTHY EATING POLICY
F irstly, always cook food thoroughly
O nly use clean water
O nce thawed, cook food immediately
D on’t forget to re-heat cooked food thoroughly
Develop a healthy eating policy
Ideas about healthy eating can vary between individual childcare workers and between individual
parents. The best way to ensure there is agreement is to have a written healthy eating policy for the
pre-school. A policy is a written list of things you have agreed on and intend to do.
An agreed written policy also helps to ensure that the food sent with children by their parents to the
pre-school complies with the healthy eating requirements in the Childcare Act. The pre-school
manager is responsible for all the food eaten within the pre-school setting.
The pre-school may already have ways of doing things or an ‘unwritten policy’. The advantage of
writing down the points is that it gives everyone a chance to discuss and agree the guidelines. It also
provides information to new parents and staff about your approach to healthy eating. Policies can
change and need to be reviewed annually.
S tore as directed on the label
A void contact between raw food and cooked food
F requently wash your hands
E nsure that you keep kitchen surfaces very clean
T ake care that hot food is very hot and cold food very cold
Y our food should be protected from insects, rodents and pets
36
Involve parents in the discussions on developing a food and nutrition policy. Let them know you are
writing a policy and ask for their views. Share drafts of the policy with them. It is important to
include some parents in the group developing the policy.
Ensure all staff are willing to work within the policy. Provide training as needed to ensure staff are
confident implementing the policy. Monitor the policy on a regular basis. Address any aspects that
are not being followed.
When the policy is written, provide a copy for all parents and staff. Give new
parents and new staff a copy when they arrive and check that they
understand how the policy relates to them. Post the policy and weekly menus
in a visible location, maybe where children’s coats are hung. Parents can see
what food is provided at the pre-school and this helps them to plan what
foods to give at home. Parents can also offer suggestions for menu items.
A sample policy is shown in TABLE 9, (page 38). Discuss with pre-school staff
and with parents which of these statements apply to your pre-school and add
others that might be more suitable. Additional help can be sought from your
Community Nutrition and Dietetic Service and/or Pre-school Inspection
Team. Their contact details are listed on pages 43 and 44.
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Food and Nutrition Guidelines for Pre-school Services
TABLE 9 - SAMPLE PRE-SCHOOL HEALTHY EATING POLICY
• Mothers will be supported to continue breastfeeding their children.
• Infants will be held upright while bottle feeding. No bottles will be propped.
Food and Nutrition Guidelines for Pre-school Services
Food for special occasions
Food is often part of a celebration, for example a birthday cake. There is nothing wrong with
occasional sweet foods. However, in a large childcare setting there may be so many special events
that sweet treats are available nearly everyday.
• Formula milk feeds for infants will be provided by parents and ready to use. Staff will not
make up formula feeds.
Encourage parents to keep sweet treats for home celebrations and in the pre-school to mark the
occasion with decorations, party games and non-food treats such as face painting rather than
sweets, crisps and fizzy drinks.
• A weekly menu will provide the children with varied foods. This menu will be on display
in advance. Recipes and food ingredients are available to parents.
Holidays, festivals and religious occasions of various cultures can provide an opportunity to introduce
children to various cultures. These events can be marked by special foods but also by other activities.
• Parents are encouraged to offer menu suggestions or comments on the nutrition policy.
• All children will have suitable food available depending on their age, development and
needs, using the recommended servings table as a guide.
• Breakfast will be available each morning. Parents are responsible to inform the pre-school
if their child needs breakfast on arrival.
• Full fat milk will be served with morning and afternoon snacks. A low-fat or semi-skimmed
milk option will be available at parents’ request for children over 2 years of age, who eat a
varied diet.
• Water will be available at all times.
• Fizzy drinks and fruit squash will not be provided.
• Diluted pure unsweetened fruit juice will be served with main meals.
• Children will have access to bread or fruit if they are hungry between scheduled meal and
snack times.
Rewards and treats
Rewards are often given to children as a means of reinforcing good behaviour or if they have done
well at a task. Aim to use other types of rewards rather than food rewards, such as sweets.
Ideas for rewards
•
•
•
•
•
•
Smile
Praise
Pat on the back
Choosing a story to be read
Being the ‘leader’ in an activity
Having first choice in something
•
•
•
•
•
Star or sticker
A rubber stamp on the back of the hand
A paper crown
A badge
A clap from the other children
• Children will be allowed to have dessert if they do not eat their main course.
• Parents will be advised if their child is not eating well.
• Parents of children on special diets will be asked to provide as much information as
possible about suitable foods. In some cases, parents may be asked to provide food
themselves.
• Carers will sit with the children when they eat and encourage good eating habits.
• Children will sit when eating or having a drink.
• Withholding food will not be used as a form of punishment.
Outside catering companies
Some pre-schools may get their meals from outside catering companies. If this is your situation,
discuss these guidelines with the company. A catering company should be able to meet these
guidelines and provide varied, nutritious meals suitable for children of different ages. They should
provide a menu cycle in advance. The food should be prepared and delivered in accordance with
food safety guidelines. They should provide any necessary information and training on how to
prepare the food for serving, such as re-heating directions.
• Parents are asked not to send sweets, crisps and other snack foods to the pre-school.
• Birthday party food should be discussed in advance with the staff.
• All food in the pre-school will be stored, prepared and served using good food safety
practices.
• Staff will receive training in relation to healthy eating and food safety.
Learn through food
Food is an important part of life. Pre-school can provide an opportunity to learn about food, where
it comes from, how it grows, general good health, and food cultures. Learning how to choose and
enjoy many different nutritious foods in early childhood can provide the foundation for a lifetime of
healthy food choices.
• Children will be encouraged to play outside every day, weather permitting, to ensure they
receive sunlight which helps their bodies to make vitamin D.
• This policy will be displayed in the reception area. It will be reviewed annually.
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Food and Nutrition Guidelines for Pre-school Services
Food and Nutrition Guidelines for Pre-school Services
Physical Activity is important too
Food related activities
• Participate in National Healthy Eating Campaigns. Check dates and theme with your
Community Nutrition and Dietetic Service. Contact details on page 43.
• Make pictures with food, for example, using dried pasta and pulses, rice and seeds.
• Cut out food pictures from magazines for collages. The colourful pictures could then be
displayed in the pre-school. This could be combined with a tasting session of various fruits
and vegetables.
• Active children have a better appetite. A child that is inactive and has a poor appetite may not get
all the nutrients he or she needs in a small amount of food.
• Playing outside in summer sunshine helps children to get vitamin D for healthy bones and teeth.
Limit exposure in strong sunlight and use hats and sunscreen as necessary.
• Physical activity builds up muscle strength and fitness and develops skills of balance, co-ordination
and climbing.
• Make food prints using halved small potatoes, carrots, apples or parsnips.
• Active children are more likely to be active adults. An active lifestyle reduces the risk of ill health
as an adult.
• Make a seed ball for the birds.
• Healthy eating and regular physical activity help make a healthy body.
• Have a pretend play café or shop.
• Timetable periods of physical activity every day throughout the year.
• Grow mustard seeds, cress or sprout seeds.
• Make papier maché fruit and vegetables.
Aim for at least 1 hour of physical activity most days of the week. Some or all of this
activity should take place in the pre-school.
• Get the children to draw pictures of characters – “The Garden Gang” - with names like
Kieran Kiwi, Olivia Orange or Bart Broccoli playing in the garden. Organise a display of
raw fruit and vegetables and ask children to identify using fun names.
• Sing food-related songs and rhymes, for example, ‘Ten juicy apples sitting on a wall...’.
• Play food smells game for example, vinegar, orange or onion.
• Play food-tasting game where the children have to guess what foods they taste without
seeing what they are eating.
NO ACTIVITY
• Let children help to prepare food, depending on age and ability. Remember to encourage
both boys and girls to be involved.
• Play ‘Happy Families’ card games with ‘families’ of foods from each shelf of the Food
Pyramid.
• Ask the children to think of the many ways in which we use milk, cheese and yogurt each
day. This may include milk on cereal, milk on its own as a drink, milk and yogurt in a
home-made milkshake, cheese on toast, cheese strings/slices/triangles on their own,
cheese on crackers, yogurt on fruit and so on. Explain that these foods are rich in
calcium, which is good for bone health.
• Ask the children to name all the foods they associate with the word SNACK. You can talk
through with the children which choices are healthy and which are not-so-healthy. This
game can be used to highlight the topic of dental health with young children.
LOW ACTIVITY
MEDIUM ACTIVITY
MEDIUM / HIGH ACTIVITY
HIGH ACTIVITY
40
Plenty of play and physical activity are essential for children’s health.
Aim for at least 1 hour most days of the week.
Food and Nutrition Guidelines for Pre-school Services
Conclusion
Food and Nutrition Guidelines for Pre-school Services
SECTION FIVE – FURTHER INFORMATION
Good nutrition and healthy eating habits build a healthy foundation for children. These Food and
Nutrition Guidelines can assist in providing healthy food in the pre-school as well as developing
positive attitudes to eating and physical activity as part of a healthy lifestyle.
Further assistance and information is available from the Community Nutrition and Dietetic Service
in each Health Board area, as listed on page 43.
Community Nutrition and Dietetic Services
1. Western Health Board, West City Centre, Seamus Quirke Rd, Co Galway. Ph: 091 548335
2. North Western Health Board, Health Promotion Service, Main Street, Ballyshannon,
Co Donegal. Ph: 071 9852000
3. North Eastern Health Board, Health Promotion Department, Railway Street, Navan,
Co Meath. Ph: 046 9076400
4. South Eastern Health Board, Health Promotion Department, Dean Street, Co Kilkenny.
Ph: 056 7761400
5. Mid-Western Health Board, Health Promotion Centre, Parkview House, Pery Street,
Co Limerick. Ph: 061 483215
6. Midland Health Board, 28 Pearse St, Mullingar, Co Westmeath. Ph: 044 84950
7. Southern Health Board, Health Promotion Dept., Eye, Ear & Throat Hospital, Western Rd,
Co Cork. Ph: 021 4921642
8. East Coast Area Health Board, Health Promotion Department, Block B, Civic Centre,
Main Street, Bray, Co Wicklow. Ph: 01 2744295/4296
9. South Western Area Health Board, Health Promotion Dept, 3rd Floor, 52 Broomhill Road,
Tallaght, Dublin 24. Ph: 01 4632800
10. Northern Area Health Board, Health Promotion Service, Park House, 3rd Floor, 119-197
North Circular Road, Dublin 7. Ph: 01 8823400
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Food and Nutrition Guidelines for Pre-school Services
PRE-SCHOOL INSPECTION TEAMS
Food and Nutrition Guidelines for Pre-school Services
SOUTHERN HEALTH BOARD PRE-SCHOOL SERVICES
Southern Health Board Pre-School Office,
Floor 2, Abbeycourt House, Georges Quay, Cork
Ph: 021 4923826
SOUTH EASTERN HEALTH BOARD PRE-SCHOOL SERVICES
Kilkenny
Community Care Centre, James Green, Kilkenny Ph: 056 7784600
Tipperary
Community Care Centre, Western Road, Clonmel, Co. Tipperary Ph: 052 77000
Waterford
Community Care Centre, Cork Road, Waterford Ph: 051 842800
Wexford
Community Care Centre, Grogan’s Road, Wexford Ph: 053 23522
NORTH WESTERN HEALTH BOARD PRE-SCHOOL SERVICES
Sligo/Leitrim/West Cavan
Pre-School Services, North Western Health Board, Markievicz House, Sligo
Ph: 071 9155100 Ext: 5346 or Ext: 5286
Donegal
Pre-School Services, North Western Health Board, County Clinic, Letterkenny, Co.Donegal
Ph: 074 9123669.
NORTH EASTERN HEALTH BOARD PRE-SCHOOL SERVICES
Meath
Pre-School Office, Family Resource Centre, NEHB, Commons Road, Navan, Co. Meath
Ph: 046 9073178
Louth
Pre-School Office, North Eastern Health Board, The Ramparts, Dundalk, Co. Louth
Ph: 042 9389170
Cavan/Monaghan
Pre-School Office, Monaghan Local Health Care Centre, North Eastern Health Board, Rooskey, Co. Monaghan
Ph: 046 30466
WESTERN HEALTH BOARD PRE-SCHOOL SERVICES
Galway
Early Child Care Services, 9b Liosbán Industrial Estate, Tuam Road, Co.Galway
Ph: 091 771928
Mayo
Early Child Care Services, 2nd Floor, Mill Lane, Bridge Street, Castlebar, Co. Mayo
Ph: 094 9034776
Roscommon
Early Child Care Services, Abbeytown House, Abbey Street, Co.Roscommon
Ph: 090 6626732
44
North Lee Community Services Area Pre-School Inspection Team
Southern Health Board, Floor 2, Abbeycourt House, George’s Quay, Cork.
Ph: 021 4923975/4923884
Fax: 021 4923953
South Lee Community Services Area Pre-School Inspection Team
Southern Health Board, Floor 2, Abbeycourt House, George’s Quay, Cork.
Ph: 021 4923975/4923884
Fax: 021 4923953
North Cork Community Services Area Pre-School Inspection Team
Southern Health Board, Gouldshill House, Mallow, Co. Cork.
Ph: 022 30200
Fax: 022 30211
West Cork Community Services Area Pre-School Inspection Team
Southern Health Board, Coolnagarrane, Skibbereen, Co. Cork
Ph: 028 40490
Fax: 028 40511
Kerry Community Services Area Pre-School Inspection Team
Southern Health Board, Quayside House, Princes Street, Tralee, Co. Kerry
Ph: 066 7184509
Fax: 066 7184512
MIDLAND HEALTH BOARD PRE-SCHOOL SERVICES
Laois/Offaly
Pre-School Services Office, Midland Health Board, Harbour Street, Tullamore,Co. Offaly
Ph: 0506 28108
Longford/Westmeath
Pre-School Services Office, St. Lomans Hospital, Springfield, Mullingar, Co. Westmeath
Ph: 044 84460
MID-WESTERN HEALTH BOARD PRE-SCHOOL SERVICES
North Tipperary Pre-School Inspection & Information Services,
Annbrook, Limerick Road, Nenagh, Co Tipperary
Ph: 067 38308
Clare Pre-School Inspection & Information Services,
River House, Gort Road, Ennis, Co Clare
Ph: 065 6863902
Fax: 065 6863983
Limerick Pre-School Inspection & Information Services,
87 O'Connell Street, Limerick
Ph: 061 483591
45
Food and Nutrition Guidelines for Pre-school Services
ERHA PRE-SCHOOL SERVICES
EASTERN REGION DUBLIN, KILDARE AND WICKLOW
Pre-School Officer Area 1 & 10
Loughlinstown Health Centre, Loughlinstown Drive, Co Dublin
Ph: 01 2822122
Fax: 01 2821594
Pre-School Officer Area 2 & Dublin South City
The Maltings Business Park, 54-55 Marrowbone Lane, Dublin 8
Ph: 01 4544733
Fax: 01 4544827
Pre-School Officer Dublin South West & Dublin West
Community Services, Cherry Orchard Hospital, Ballyfermot, Dublin 10
Ph: 01 6206323
Fax: 01 6206358
Pre-School Officer Area 6
Rathdown Road, Dublin 7
Ph: 01 8825198
Fax: 01 8825168
Pre-School Officer Area 7
Rathdown Road, Dublin 7
Ph: 01 8825197
Fax: 01 8825167
Pre-School Officer Area 8
The Cottage, 2 Church Road
Ph: 01 8402835
Fax: 01 8901636
Pre-School Officer Kildare & West Wicklow
Poplar House, Poplar Square, Naas, Co Kildare
Ph: 045 873241
Fax: 045 879225
46
Food and Nutrition Guidelines for Pre-school Services
CONSULTATION GROUP
Ms Marie Gleeson, Pre-school Officer, South Western Area Health Board
Ms Rosemary Maher Plant, Oral Health Promotion Officer, South Western Area Health Board
Ms Mary Kearney, Child Care Manager, South Western Area Health Board
Ms Michele Corcoran, Pre-School Service, South Western Area Health Board
Ms Bernadette Manning, Community Services Officer, South Western Area Health Board
Ms Yvonne Gray, Oral Health Promotion Officer, South Western Area Health Board
Ms Sheila Reaper Reynolds, Schools Health Promotion Officer, South Western Area Health Board
Ms Charlotte Johnston, Senior Community Dietitian, Midland Health Board
Ms Anne Harmon, National Parents Council, Co Louth
Ms Dolores Robert Lyons, National Parents Council, Co Laois
Ms Mary Cooney, Health Promotion Officer for Schools, Mid Western Health Board
Ms Lorna Roche, Education and Training Co-ordinator, Mid Western Health Board
Ms Carol O’ Sullivan, Mid Western Health Board
Ms Sharon Mahon, Oral Health Promotion Officer, South Western Area Health Board
Dr. David J. Clarke, Principal Dental Surgeon, East Coast Area Health Board
Mr Colm O Ceallachain, Roinn Chigire, Department of Education and Science
Dr. Ann Marie Brady, East Coast Area Health Board
Ms Breda Gavin, Community Dietitian, East Coast Area Health Board
Dr. Dan O’ Meara, Dental Department, Midland Health Board
Dr. Maria Kenny, Dental Department, Midland Health Board
Ms. Ann Higgins, Mary Immaculate College, Mid Western Health Board
Mr. Stephen McDermott, Principal Dental Officer, East Coast Area Health Board
Mr. Des Kelly, Chairman, National Parents Council, Dublin
Ms Deirdre Sadlier, Executive Director, Dental Health Foundation
Ms Anastasia Crickley, Pavee Point, Dublin
Ms Rachel Devlin, Child Care Manager, South Western Area Health Board
Ms. Maureen Palmer, Dun Laoghaire Institute of Art Design and Technology
Mr John Lahiff, SPHE National Co-ordinator, Marino Institute of Education
Ms Bernadette McDonnell, Child Care Policy Unit, Department of Health and Children
Ms Marie Therese Crotty, National Heart Alliance, Irish Heart Foundation
Ms Margaret Fitzgerald, Food Safety Authority of Ireland
Ms. Geraldine Quinn, Scientific Support Manager, Food Safety Promotions Board
Ms. Olive McGovern, Youth Project Officer, Department of Health and Children
Mr. Gerry Gavin, Chief Dental Officer, Department of Health and Children
Mr. Gearoid O’ Dufaigh, Assistant Principal, Environmental Health Unit, Department of Health
and Children
Ms Anne Walsh, Health Education Officer, Health Promotion Department, North Western
Health Board
Ms Nola Corcoran, Community Dietitian, North Eastern Health Board
Ms Ann O’Donnell, Limerick Corporation
Ms Mary Lally, Department of Marine and Natural Resources,
Mr. Brendan Keating, City Manager, Limerick Corporation
47
Food and Nutrition Guidelines for Pre-school Services
Mr. Paddy McGrath, Environment and Cultural Department, Wood Quay, Dublin
Mr Tony Carberry, Department of Finance
Mr Kevin Cahillane, Department of the Environment and Local Government
Mr Tony Dalton, Department of Education and Science
Ms Patricia O’Connor, Department of Education and Science
Mr Paul Kennedy, Department of Education and Science
Ms Marion Hehir, Department of Social and Family Affairs
Ms May Carroll, Department of Social and Family Affairs
Ms Deirdre Nichol, Department of Social and Family Affairs
Mr Brian O’ Raghallaigh, Department of Social and Family Affairs
Ms Maureen McGowan, Community Dietitian Manager, East Coast Area Health Board
Ms Sheena Rafferty, Community Dietitian Manager, Northern Area Health Board
Ms Olive Carolan, Community Dietitian Manager, North Eastern Health Board
Ms Margaret O’Neill, Community Dietitian Manager, South Western Area Health Board
Ms Marguerite O’Donnell, Community Dietitian Manager, Western Health Board
Ms Freda Horan, Community Dietitian Manager, Southern Health Board
Ms Corina Glennon, Community Dietitian Manager, Midland Health Board
Ms. Susan Higgins, Community Dietitian Manager, South Eastern Health Board
Ms. Emma Ball, Community Dietitian Manager, North Western Health Board
Ms Kay Finn, Community Dietitian, Mid Western Health Board
Ms Annemarie Callery, Development Officer, North Western Health Board
Ms. Anne McAteer, Education Officer, North Western Health Board
OTHER CONTACTS
Safefood: Food Safety Promotion Board, Eastgate, Little Island, Cork, Ph: 021 2304100
Food Safety Authority of Ireland, Lower Abbey Street, Dublin, Ph: 01 8171301
Food and Nutrition Guidelines for Pre-school Services
ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS
The Health Promotion Unit of the Department of Health and Children wishes to thank the
following:
The Western Health Board, for initiating the Pre-School Guidelines
The Working Group:
Genevieve Becker and Brid O’Neill, Community Dietitians, Western Health Board
Freda Horan and Mary Dineen, Community Dietitians, Southern Health Board
Dara Morgan and Margaret O’Neill, Community Dietitians, South Western Area Health Board
Community Dietitian Managers:
Marguerite O’Donnell, Western Health Board; Emma Ball, North Western Health Board; Olive
Carolan, North Eastern Health Board; Susan Higgins, South Eastern Health Board; Corina Glennon,
Midland Health Board; Sheena Rafferty, Northern Area Health Board; Maureen McGowan, East
Coast Area Health Board; Audrey Lyons, Mid Western Health Board; Margaret O’Neill, South
Western Area Health Board; Freda Horan, Southern Health Board.
The Pre-School Inspectors
The Department of Nutrition and Dietetics, Our Lady’s Hospital, Crumlin
The Department of Nutrition and Dietetics, The Children’s Hospital, Temple Street
The Paediatric Interest Group, Irish Nutrition and Dietetic Institute
The Food Unit, Department of Health and Children
The Childcare Policy Unit, Department of Health and Children, Bernadette McDonnell
The Health Promotion Unit, Department of Health and Children; Ursula O’Dwyer (Consultant
Dietitian); Paul Flanagan; Oilbhe O’Donoghue; Sylvia Cox and Brian Brogan
Special thanks to Dara Morgan, Community Dietitian, South Western Area Health Board, who
reviewed various draft documents and The National Children’s Nurseries Association, for the
opportunity to present and discuss the Guidelines at their annual Study Conference.
April 2004
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