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Introduction to Healthy Growth

Supporting healthy growth starts in early childhood. Throughout early childhood, children are first introduced to solids, they develop their food preferences, and their exposure to a variety of foods expands their palate. Many of these events can influence a child’s weight. Ultimately, providing children with a healthy and supportive food environment will impact their growth and weight.

video answering parents questions

Concerns about young children’s weight are warranted as childhood overweight has increased; however all children need to have the calories and nutrients to support continued growth. Adults who are concerned about children’s weight can provide all children, including overweight children, with a healthy food environment that will support their growth and their weight. This section provides information on the development of overweight in young children. It also discusses some of the factors influencing young children’s weight and ways to create a healthy food and mealtime environment.