Meat, Dairy, and Starch
Chicken contains much less fat than other meats, as most of the fat lies in the skin, which can be removed. However, chicken with the skin on is higher in fat than beef and other red meats.
Red meat is best included in your child's diet two or three times a week, as it is the best source of readily absorbed iron. Iron requirements rise when the body is growing fast; so it is especially important to make sure your child gets enough iron between 6 months and 2 years.
White fish such as haddock and cod are an excellent source of low-fat protein and contain selenium, calcium, and magnesium. Eating fish helps fight free radicals and also boosts the immune system.
Salmon provides a good source of essential fats that support brain function and the immune system. Indeed, it is thought that the essential fatty acids in oily fish may help children who suffer from dyslexia or dyspraxia. An oily fish such as salmon should be included in all of our diets at least once a week.
Dairy and Starch
Cheese is high in saturated fat, which is not good for adults but is a great energy food for children. Cheese is also a good source of riboflavin (vitamin B2), which is essential for converting proteins, fats, and carbohydrates into energy. Cheese is a good source of Vitamin B12 for people who don't eat meat.
Pasta is a good source of complex carbohydrates, which provide us with sustained energy. This is why it is so popular with athletes. Try mixing some whole-grain pasta with regular pasta to increase the fiber content of the meal.
Brown rice provides a good source of energy, some protein, B vitamins, and minerals. It is much more nutritious to eat brown rice, as white rice has lost most of its important minerals and vitamins during processing. The starch in rice, particularly brown rice, is absorbed slowly, thereby providing a steady release of glucose for sustained energy.
Sweet potatoes are high in vitamins A and C and a particularly rich source of phytochemicals, which can help protect against disease.
Yogurt provides a good source of calcium, protein, and phosphorus, which are all important for strong, healthy bones and teeth. Yogurt is more easily digested than milk.