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Q: How can I help my kids eat a healthy diet?

Eating a healthy diet is important for kids all year long. Good nutrition helps kids grow and develop properly, and it can also keep their immune system strong to protect them against COVID, flu, and other viruses.

You can help your kids eat a healthy diet by making sure they get a lot of fresh, nutrient-rich foods, and limiting sweets, sugary drinks, and foods that are highly processed or high in salt and saturated fat.

A healthy, balanced diet includes:

Proteins like fish, chicken, lean meat, eggs, beans, soy products, and nuts.

Lots of fresh produce in a rainbow of colors, including vegetables like leafy greens, tomatoes, broccoli, cauliflower, carrots, peas and beets; as well as fruits like pineapples, bananas, papayas, mangos, apples, citrus, and strawberries.

Carbohydrates that are high in fiber or other nutrients like sweet potatoes, taro, poi, whole-wheat bread, and whole grains like brown rice and oatmeal are also healthy choices.

Low-fat milk, yogurt or other dairy products for kids who can eat dairy; or other high-calcium foods for kids who are lactose intolerant, including beans, leafy greens, or calcium-fortified soy milk, cereal, or other lactose-free foods.

Studies have found that kids who eat a healthy diet have improved focus and do better in school. The bottom line is, good nutrition keeps kids healthy and growing all year long.

Irene Papaconstadopoulos, MD


CHAMPS Pediatrics LLC
1300 N. Holopono St. Suite 115
Kihei, HI 96753