Eat Meals, Not Snacks
The real deal: Children are notorious nibblers, and for good reason. Their high-calorie needs -- and small stomachs -- make eating throughout the day an absolute must. Experts recommend serving little kids five to six small meals every day instead of three larger ones. Snacks also help fill in nutrient gaps: For instance, yogurt gives your child a calcium kick, and fruit delivers fiber. In addition, letting kids munch when they're hungry -- and not forcing them to finish a meal if they're stuffed -- will teach them to heed their body's own hunger and fullness signals and help ward off weight problems later on, Carter says. Just don't offer snacks within an hour or two of regular meals.