Raising healthy eaters can feel overwhelming, especially as children begin to assert their own opinions about food.

Creating healthy eating patterns for children is important for optimal growth and development, building a healthy immune system, and reducing the risk of chronic diseases later in life (1Trusted Source).

Children over the age of 1 will get most of their nutrition from solid food, and it’s important they eat foods from a variety of food groups to meet their vitamin and mineral needs (2Trusted Source).

That means eating protein-rich foods, carbs, fruits, vegetables, and healthy fats. The amount of each food group will vary by age, gender, and activity level (1Trusted Source).

However, kids like what they already know, and getting them to try new foods or make sure they’re eating from all food groups can be challenging.

This guide helps you understand what you need to know and how to raise healthy, competent eaters.