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Nutrition Through The Ages…

Infant Nutrition: 0-12 months

• Good nutrition is essential for infants.
• During first year, infants grow and develop
faster than at any other time.
• For their size, infants require more
Nutrient Needs for Infants
• Calories
– High-calorie needs based on body weight.
– Infants gain weight very quickly.

• Protein
– Critical for infant growth.
– Infants who breastfeed or drink
recommended amount of formula consume
adequate protein.
Nutrient Needs for Infants
• Fat
– Do not limit for children under 2.
– Needed to support an infants’ rapid growth.
– More than 50% of calories should come from fat.

• Vitamins and minerals

– Vitamin and mineral needs are based on the
average amount consumed by thriving infants’
breastfed by well-nourished mothers.
Infant’s First Food
• For the first 4-6
months an infant’s
nutritional needs can
be met by breast milk,
infant formula or a
• Breast milk or formula
should continue
throughout the first
year of life.
Introducing Solid Foods
• Signs that infant is ready for
solid foods:
– Sits with little support
– Shows interest in food
– Can move foods from the front
to the back of the mouth
– Can turn away to signal
Introducing Solid Foods
– Generally start at 4-6 months with
iron-fortified, single-grain infant cereal

– Strained baby meats, vegetables and

fruits; 100% fruit juices; plain toast
and teething biscuits – 7-9 months.

– Chopped soft fruits and vegetables;

meats; unsweetened dry cereals
plain; soft bread; and pasta – 10-12
Birth to 1 Year
• Introduce challenge of drinking from sippy
cup around 6 to 9 months.
• Limit amount of juice (AAP does not
recommend juice for infants under 6 months
and no more than 168 gms a day for older
• One by one, offer a variety of foods to baby.
• Begin with single foods.
• Plain tastes best.
• Increase amount of solid foods as baby grows.
Toddler Nutrition:
12 months – 2 years

• Adequate nutrition is necessary for toddlers to

achieve their full growth and developmental
Transition to Table Food
• Introduce new table foods slowly and
add only one food at a time.
• Finger foods can help in the transition
from pureed foods to table foods.
• Nutritious snacks should be used
instead of sweetened beverages, snack
foods or desserts.
Toddlers and Preschoolers
• Set a schedule.
• Keep serving sizes “child friendly.”
– Rule of thumb = 1 tablespoon of food per year of age.
• Listen to children’s hunger cues.
• Avoid forcing membership into the “clean-plate
• Learn about the feeding relationship between
parents and child.
• Lifetime eating habits and attitudes are formed
during these early years of childhood.
Nutrient Needs of Toddlers
• Appetite
– Toddler’s growth rate slows, which results
in decreased appetite and interest in food.
– It is important to understand a decreased
appetite is normal.
– Toddlers can self-regulate their calorie
• Providing variety of foods by following
MyPyramid every day is best assurance of
getting adequate calories, vitamins and
minerals needed.
• Recommendations for MyPyramid are only for
individuals 2 years and above.
• My Pyramid Plan based on 1,000 calories for
toddler 2 years of age:
– Grains – 3 ounces (1.5 ounces whole grains)
– Vegetables – 1 cup (2 servings)
– Fruit – 1 cup (2 servings)
– Milk – 2 cups
– Meat & Beans 2 ounces
– Oils – 3 teaspoons daily
– Extra Fats & Sugars - limited
• Concern during transition from strained foods to
regular table foods.
• Foods that are hard, tough to chew, small and round
or sticky are most often choked on, unless the shape
or texture can be modified.
Hot dogs Whole grapes
Tough stringy meats Hard, raw vegetables
Chunks of meat Popcorn
Fish with bones Small or hard candies
Peanut butter Jelly beans
Nuts Gum
Hard raw fruits Gummy textured candy
Marshmallows Raisins
Preventing Overweight in Infants
and Toddlers
• Avoid overfeeding.
• Do not force infants to eat.
• Wait until 4-6 months before adding
solid foods.
• Limit juice to 3-4 ounces.
• Do not use food as a reward.
• Encourage physical activity.
School-age Nutrition Needs
– Follow MyPyramid.
– 6-11 year olds need 1,200 to 2,200 calories depending on
age, gender and activity level.
• In general, boys require slightly more than girls and active
kids require more than inactive kids. (28.3495 gms)

Grains Vegetables Fruits Milk Meat/Beans

1,200 4 oz. 1.5 cups 1 cup 2 cups 3 oz.

1,400 5 oz. 1.5 cups 1.5 cups 2 cups 4 oz.

1,600 5 oz. 2 cups 1.5 cups 3 cups 5 oz.

1,800 6 oz. 2.5 cups 1.5 cups 3 cups 5 oz.

2,000 6 oz. 2.5 cups 2 cups 3 cups 5.5 oz.

2,200 7 oz. 3 cups 2 cups 3 cups 6 oz.

School Age Nutrition Needs
• Children need to make their own
food decisions
• Breakfast – Breakfast – Breakfast
– A well-nourished child is ready to learn.
– Regular breakfast skipping is linked to less school
achievement and performance.
– Kids who eat breakfast are less likely to be
overweight and more likely to get enough calcium.
• Beating the time barrier
– Keep quick-to-fix healthy foods on hand: ready-to-
eat whole-grain cereals, bagels, toaster waffles
and breads; yogurt, fresh fruit, low-fat milk and
cheeses, peanut butter.
School-age Nutrition Needs
• The Vegetable Challenge
• Add veggies to kid favorites.
• Fortify ready-to-eat soup with
extra vegetables or canned beans.
• Offer raw finger-food veggies.
• Serve vegetables with bright colors and
crisp texture.
• Start a “veggie club.”
• Nothing works – offer more fruit.
• Important part of a balanced diet for a
• Growing kids need extra energy during
the day to support growth and development.
• Planning can help ensure that snacks eaten will
be healthier ones.
• Can cut down on feelings of hunger and less
likelihood of overeating at mealtimes.
• Keep serving sizes in mind as well as nutrient
• Keep in mind to choose those that are low in fat,
added sugars and calories.
Healthy Snack Choices
• Low-fat milk • Cut-up fresh vegetables
• Low-fat yogurt with fruit with low-fat salad
• dressing
String cheese
• Baby carrots
• Instant pudding made
with nonfat milk • Graham crackers
• Frozen fruit bars • Pretzels
• Fresh fruit • Dry cereal
• Individual servings of • Vanilla wafers
applesauce or fruit • Animal crackers
• Raisins • Plain popcorn
Picky! Picky!! Picky!!!
– Relax. Picky eating is often a normal phase.
– Kids sometimes need 10 or more exposures
to a food before they will take their first bite.
– Recognize importance of family meals.
– Kids need positive role models for healthy
eating and physical activity.
– Prepare foods in a variety of ways.
Picky! Picky!! Picky!!!

– Involve kids in food-related activities.

– Catch kids when they are hungry.
– Make sure there are plenty of healthy choices
– Encourage kids to drink water when thirsty.
– Keep regular checks on growth.
– Daily multivitamin/mineral supplement??
Unplug Kids
– 60 minutes of activity most days is
• Walking
• Bike riding
• Skating or skate boarding
• Playing basketball or soccer
• Swimming
• Jumping rope
– Reduce time spent with the
television, computer or
video games
Slim Down an Overweight Child

– Seek professional advice.

– Encourage activity and participate with them.
– Avoid severe food restrictions or fad diets.
– Offer lower fat, lower calorie foods all the time –
meals and snacks.
– Tailor portion sizes for the child not an adult.
– Make meals and snacks enjoyable.
– Avoid labeling foods as “good” or “bad.”
Slim Down an Overweight Child
– Teach to eat slowly and chew food well.
– Set time limits on TV, computer or video games.
– Make a house rule – eat only in the kitchen or
dining room.
– Talk to child about his or her feelings.
– Be aware that sometimes kids say they’re
hungry when they’re really bored or looking for
• Offer a snack like an apple, crackers or even a glass
of water.
• Estimated daily calories for teens 14-
– Girls = 1,800 to 2,400 (inactive → active)
– Boys = 2,200
Grains to 3,200
Vegetables (inactive
Fruits Milk → Meat/Beans
28.35 gms.
1,800 6 oz. 2.5 cups 1.5 cups 3 cups 5 oz.

2,000 6 oz. 2.5 cups 2 cups 3 cups 5.5 oz.

2,200 7 oz. 3 cups 2 cups 3 cups 6 oz.

2,400 8 oz. 3 cups 2 cups 3 cups 6.5 oz.

2,800 10 oz. 3.5 cups 2.5 cups 3 cups 7 oz.

3,200 10 oz. 4 cups 2.5 cups 3 cups 7 oz.

Apples, Pretzels and Ice Cream
• Teens are typically missing certain
nutrients in their daily diets.
• The 3 most important ones are
– Calcium.
– Iron.
– Zinc.
• Function
– Gives strength to bones and teeth
– Helps your muscles contract
– Helps blood to clot
• Food Sources
– Milk, yogurt, cheese, ice cream, frozen yogurt,
foods made with mild or other dairy products
– Orange juice fortified with calcium, dark green,
leafy vegetables, broccoli, soybeans, canned fish
with bones like salmon and sardines
• How much is needed a day?
– 1,300 mg a day
– No more than 2,500 mg a day
• How do you know how much calcium a
food has?
– Look at the % daily value next to calcium
on the food label
– Try to eat and drink foods with 20% or
more DV for calcium
• Only 14% of girls and 36% of boys age
12 to 19 get enough calcium every
• Typical amounts of calcium found in foods
– 1 cup of milk, whole or low-fat 300 mg
– 1 ½ oz. cheddar cheese
– 1 cup low-fat fruit yogurt
– 1 cup orange juice, calcium fortified
– 3 oz. canned salmon 205
– ½ cup pudding 150
– ½ cup frozen yogurt 105
– ½ cup ice cream 85
– ½ cup broccoli 45
Solving the Calcium
• Think of ways to incorporate milk and
other calcium foods into meals and
• Keep foods with calcium in the house and
put them on the table during meals and
• Keep drinking milk throughout life.
• Lay off soft drinks as much as possible –
they pull calcium and phosphorous from
Ideas for High-Calcium
• Milk or flavored milk beverage
• Frozen yogurt
• Low-fat cheese cubes and pretzels
• Mini pizzas
• Fruit flavored yogurt
• You name a few - - -
• Function
– Forms hemoglobin, which carries oxygen in blood
– Helps prevent infection and anemia
– Helps body use food for energy
• Food sources
– Meat, poultry, eggs
– Dried fruit
– Fortified breads and cereals
– Dark green vegetables
• How much is needed each day?
– 15 mg each day for girls
– 11 mg each day for boys
Counting Up Iron
• 3 oz. beef liver 5.8 mg
• 3 oz. lean ground beef 1.8
• 3 oz. chicken 1.0
• 1 cup fortified cereal 4.5 – 18
• ½ cup red kidney beans 2.6
• 1 oz. pretzels 1.3
Spiking Iron Absorption
• To increase the absorption of iron
– Eat or drink a source of vitamin C with
iron food sources.
– Don’t drink tea with iron foods – it
decreases the absorption.
• 17% of all adolescent girls are anemic.

– Tired, pale, hands stay cold, nail beds turn

blue, catch infections quickly.
Ideas for High-Iron
• Dried fruits like apricots, bananas,
raisins, cranberries
• Pretzels or other enriched-grain
• Nuts
• You name a few - - -
Zinc: Also Essential
• Often comes up short for teens.
• Essential for growth and sexual
• Food sources: meats and animal-based
• Lack of zinc may affect development.
Fast Food
• 2-3 fast-food meals a week.
• More schools are serving fast food-
type meals.
• Usually very high in fat and sodium.
• Children develop a taste preference for high-
fat and high-sodium foods.
• Look at nutrition and make healthier choices.
– Side salad vs. fries.
– Grilled chicken sandwich vs. burger.
– Low-fat milk vs. regular soft drink.
Nutrition for the Older
Dietary Quality…
• Dietary quality plays a major role in
preventing or delaying the onset of chronic
• Older persons living in poverty are not as
likely to have a healthy diet.
Eating for Healthy Aging...

• Older adults need protein, carbohydrate,

fat, vitamins, minerals and water.
• Getting enough of the nutrients may be
• Some nutrients that may require special
- Vitamin D, vitamin C, iron, vitamin A, folic
acid, vitamin B-12, zinc and water.
Energy: Spending Calories
• Most elderly use less energy or calories.
• Need the same amount of nutrients but
few calories.
• Choose nutrient-dense food.
• Most need about 1,600 calories daily.
• No more than 30% of calories from fat.
• Most energy should be obtained from
complex carbohydrates.
Protein: An Issue for Some...
• Need 2 servings of food from the Meat and Bean
• Elderly may have a problem chewing protein-rich
• Elderly may have a problem digesting protein food.
• Limited-income might avoid meat, poultry or fish
because they often cost more than many other
How to get enough protein...
• If on a budget – keep portions small or
stretch in a casserole dish.
• Consider other less expensive sources.
• Chop meat or poultry well, if need to.
• Trouble chewing – have teeth or dentures
• Include dairy products.
Calcium: As Important As Ever...
• Calcium needs go up as we get older.
• To help maintain bone mass, calcium
recommendations increase by 20%.
• Men and women need 1,200 mg calcium
• Risk for osteoporosis goes up with age.
• Many elderly don’t consume enough
calcium-rich foods.
• Many elderly don’t get enough weight-
bearing exercise like walking or strength
• Milk, cheese and yogurt – best source of
• Other sources – dark green, leafy
vegetables, fish with edible bones and tofu
made with calcium.
Vitamin D: The Sunshine Vitamin...

• Calcium and vitamin D are partners.

• Helps deposit calcium into bones.
• Helps to protect us from bone disease.
• Body makes vitamin D after sunlight hits
the skin.
• As we age, our bodies don’t seem to make
vitamin D from sunlight as easily.
• Need for vitamin D goes up after 50.
The Iron-Vitamin C Connection
• Vitamin C helps the body absorb iron from
plant sources of food.
• Poor diet may lead to deficiency in one or
both of the nutrients.
• To avoid iron-deficiency:
– Choose economical sources of iron.
– Add vitamin C food to meal to boost iron
– Add meat fish or poultry to grain-based meals.
Thirst-Quenchers...Drink Fluids
• Adults use up abut 2 ½ quarts of fluids a
• Thirst is body’s signal to drink more.
• With age, sense of thirst diminishes.
• Elderly may not be able to count on thirst
as a reminder to drink fluids.
• As we age, kidneys do not conserve fluids
as they once did.
• Elderly may deliberately avoid fluids.
Water and the Health
• Dehydration common problem among
• Less fluids – chances of constipation rises.
• Drinking liquids at meals makes eating
• Taking medication – drinking water has an
important role.
• Older adults need 8 to 12 cups.
Warning Signs of Poor
Nutritional Health...
• I have an illness or condition that made
me change the kind and/or amount of food
I eat.
• I eat fewer than 2 meals per day.
• I eat few fruits or vegetables or milk
• I have 3 or more drinks of beer, liquor or
wine almost every day.
• I have tooth or mouth problems that make
it hard for me to eat.
• I don’t always have enough money to buy
the food I need.
• I eat alone most of the time.
• I take 3 or more different prescribed or
over-the-counter drugs a day.
• Without wanting to, I have lost or gained
10 pounds in the last 6 months.
• I am not always physically able to shop,
cook and/or feed myself.
D E T E R M I N E Your
Nutritional Health...
D isease...
– Any disease that puts your nutritional health
at risk: 4 out of 5 have chronic diseases that
are affected by diet.
– Confusion or memory loss that keeps getting
worse: affects 1 out of 5.
– Feeling sad or depressed: affects 1 in 8 older
E ating Poorly...
- Eating too little or eating too much.
- Eating the same foods day after day.
- Not eating fruits, vegetables and milk
products daily.
- Skipping meals: 1 in 5 adults skip meals
- 1 in 4 older adults drink too much
T ooth Loss/Mouth Pain...
- Healthy mouth, teeth and gums are
needed to eat.
- Missing, loose or rotten teeth or
dentures that don’t fit well can make
chewing or swallowing painful.
E conomic Hardship...
- 40% of older Americans have incomes of
less than $6,000 per year.
- Having less...or choosing to spend
less...than $25-$30 per week for food
makes it very hard to get food needed to
stay healthy.
R educed Social Contact...
- 1/3 of older Americans live alone.
- Being with people daily has a positive
effect on morale, well-being and eating.
M ultiple Medicines...
- Almost ½ of older Americans take multiple
medicines daily.
- Elderly may respond differently to drugs.
- The more medicine taken by the elderly
the greater chance of side effects.
- Vitamins and minerals taken in large
doses acts like drugs and can cause
- Tell doctor everything taken.
I nvoluntary Weight Loss/Gain...
- Losing or gaining weight when not trying is
a warning sign that must not be ignored.
- Being overweight also increases chance
of poor health.
N eeds Assistance to Self-Care...
- Most older people are able to eat.
- 1 out of 5 elderly have trouble walking,
shopping, buying and cooking food.
E lder Years Over 80...
- Most older people lead full, productive lives.
- As age increases, risk of frailty and health
problems increase.
- Check nutritional health regularly.
Eating Well As We Age...

Staying Strong and Healthy

Problem: change in the kind and or
amount of food eaten because of illness.

• Adults need over 40 different nutrients each day

to stay healthy and to be able to care for
What to do…
• Ask doctor if illness or drug taken each day
make it hard to eat the foods needed.
• Eat six small meals instead of three large ones.
• Eat snacks between meals or before bed time.
• Read food labels.
• Keep food fixed and easily available.
Problem: Eating Fewer Than Two
Meals a Day
• As we age fewer calories are needed.
• Still need same amount of (if not more) protein,
vitamins and minerals.
What to do…
• Hard to cook...use frozen dinners, pre-cooked food
or salad bar from grocery store.
• Cook meals ahead.
• “Eat out” at a senior center.
• Share shopping and cooking duties with a friend or
Problem: Eat Few Fruits,
Vegetables or Milk Products
• Fruits and vegetables are high in fiber, vitamins
and minerals.
• Milk and milk products contain calcium.
What to do:
• Buy only the amount needed.
• Keep dried, canned or frozen fruit.
• Add vegetables to soups, stews and other mixed
• Look for low-fat dairy products.
• Use cheese sauce or dip to add flavor and
calcium to fruits and vegetables.
• Don’t like milk…eat cheese or yogurt.
• Make a shake or sundae mixed with fruit
and milk.
• If milk or milk products cause gas or
diarrhea, ask for help to prevent problems.
Problem: 3 or More Drinks of Beer,
Liquor or Wine Almost Every Day.
• Alcohol is high in calories and robs body
of nutrients.
• Can harm brain, heart, liver and other vital
What to do:
• Drink in moderation.
• Don’t mix drugs and alcohol.
Problem: Tooth or Mouth Problems
That Make It Hard to Eat
• Changing the kind of food eaten can sometimes
What to do:
• Eat food that is easy-to-chew.
• Chop or grind food.
• Add gravy or sauce to make it moist.
• Eat thick soups, fruit smoothies and milkshakes.
• Use medical nutritional products.
• Eat hot cereals.
Problem: No Appetite
• Loneliness can make you lose your appetite.
• May not feel like fixing meals for self.
• Food has no flavor or tastes bad.
• What to do:
• Eat with family or friends.
• Take part of group meal programs.
• Increase flavor by adding spices and herbs.
• If medicine is the problem ask to have it changed.
• Serve food hot…get digestive juices flowing.
Problem: Short on Money
What to do...
• Buy low-cost foods – dried beans, peas, rice and
• Or buy foods containing these items.
• Use coupons for money off on foods you like.
• Buy foods on sale or store-brand foods.
• Find out what organization offers free or low-cost
• Take part in group meal program.
• Get food stamps.
Problem: Eat Alone Most
of the Time
• Seniors often eat snacks rather than a
• Snacks may be high in salt, sugar and fat.
What to do:
• Join a senior center that offers meals.
• Watch TV while you eat.
• Share meals with a friend.
Problem: Take 3 or More Different
Prescribed or Over-the-Counter
Medicines Daily
• Medicines may increase or decrease the
• May change the way food taste or smell.
• May affect need for vitamins or minerals.
• Can result in a person not getting enough food
and fluids.
What to do:
• Ask if drugs can affect eating habits.
• Make sure to understand when and how to take
the medicine.
• Never take someone’s else’s prescription
• Buy all the drugs in the same place.
• Let doctor know of changes in weight,
appetite, sense of taste or smell, energy
level or sleeping habits.
Problem: Lost or Gained 10 Lb.
in Last 6 Months
• Keeping weight stable is a sign of good
What to do:
• Always tell doctor about weight change.
• Ask for help in planning meals to meet
health needs.
• Don’t use “fat diets” or herbal cures.
• Complete Food and Nutrition Guide by the
American Dietetic Association

Prepared by: Terri Crawford

Extension Agent (Nutrition)
Northeast Region