Fruits and Vegetables

Fruits and vegetables are an important part of a healthy diet and should be incorporated into the meals and snacks served at every child care home or center. Below you will find resources that will help you increase the amount of fruits and vegetables that you serve to the children you care for.

 

Best Practices

The resources in this category are the same for all of the following best practices.

  • “Offer fruit (not juice) at least 2 times a day.”
  • “Offer vegetables (not fried) at least 2 times a day.”
  • “Offer vegetables, other than potatoes, corn or green beans 1 or more times per day.”
  • “Prepare cooked vegetables without added meat fat, margarine or butter.”
  • “Serve fruit canned in its own juice, fresh, or frozen all of the time.”

 

Building Blocks for Fun and Healthy Meals

Summary: This menu planner provides tools needed to successfully prepare and serve meals and snacks in the Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP). It comes complete with sample menus, guidance on keeping and using production records, and information on food safety and sanitation.
Source:  United States Department of Agriculture Food and Nutrition Service
Access:  http://www.fns.usda.gov/building-blocks 

 
Child Meal Pattern for Child and Adult Care Food Program

Summary:  Outlines the food pattern for children for caregivers of children from aged 1 to 18 years of age.
Source:  United States Department of Agriculture Food and Nutrition Service
Access: http://www.fns.usda.gov/sites/default/files/cacfp/CACFP_childmealpattern.pdf

 
Food Buying Guide for Child Nutrition Programs

Summary: This food buying guide contains all of the current information in one place. This will help you buy the right amount of food and the appropriate type of food for programs. It also determines the specific contribution each food makes toward the meal pattern requirements.
Source:  United States Department of Agriculture Food and Nutrition Service
Access:  http://www.fns.usda.gov/tn/food-buying-guide-for-child-nutrition-programs

 
Food Buying Guide Mobile App

Summary:  This link explains how to use a mobile app about food yield information for the Child Nutrition Programs. 
Source:  United States Department of Agriculture – Food and Nutrition Services
Access: https://www.fns.usda.gov/tn/food-buying-guide-mobile-app

 
Making Healthy Choices: Week 3 – Love your veggies

Summary:  Newsletter featuring tips for increasing consuming more vegetables and health benefits.
Source:  Michigan State University Extension
Access: http://msue.anr.msu.edu/uploads/resources/pdfs/TR.3.pdf

 
Making Healthy Choices: Week 4 – Enjoy Fruit

Summary:  Newsletter featuring tips for consuming fruits.
Source:  Michigan State University Extension
Access: http://msue.anr.msu.edu/uploads/resources/pdfs/TR.4.pdf

 
Making Healthy Choices: Week 11 – Beyond Fresh

Summary:  Newsletter featuring tips for consuming fresh, frozen, and canned fruits and vegetables.
Source:  Michigan State University Extension
Access: http://msue.anr.msu.edu/uploads/resources/pdfs/TR.11.pdf

 
Making Healthy Choices: Week 21: Get more veggies

Summary:  Newsletter featuring tips for increasing consuming more vegetables.
Source:  Michigan State University Extension
Access: http://msue.anr.msu.edu/uploads/resources/pdfs/MSUE_Healthy_Youth_Backpack_Week21_WEB.pdf

 
The Nemours Foundation Website

Summary:  Click on the Improve Food Choices to get information on eating choices and best practices for kids in daycare.
Source:  The Nemours Foundation
Access:  https://healthykidshealthyfuture.org/

 
Nutrition and Physical Activity Self-Assessment for Child Care (NAP SACC) Manuals

Summary:  This manual provides the best practice recommendations for each question on the self-assessment. The manuals also include the rationale behind each recommendation, challenges to implementing recommendations, and tips for changing current practice.
Source:  Michigan Healthy Child Care
Access:  http://mihealthtools.org/childcare/resources.asp

 
Nutrition and Wellness Tips for Young Children

Summary:  Collection of tip sheets for nutrition and physical activity. Each tip sheet focuses on a specific topic and includes a practical application section to help apply the tips to a child care program for children ages 2 through 5 years old. See pages 5-17.
Source:  United States Department of Agriculture Food and Nutrition Service
Access:  http://www.fns.usda.gov/tn/nutrition-and-wellness-tips-young-children-provider-handbook-child-and-adult-care-food-program

 
Produce for Kids: Your Healthy Family Resource

Summary:  This website is dedicated to educating about healthy eating and provides recipes, what produce is in season, and lunch box ideas.
Source: Produce for Kids, Inc.
Access:  http://www.produceforkids.com/news/whats-season


The 3 Ring Food Circus: Easy and Fun Food-Related Activities for Preschoolers and Young Children

Summary: This book contains activities that teach young children about trying and learning new foods, having fun being physically active, and using MyPlate to fill a healthy plate. You can download a pdf from this site.
Source:  United Dairy Industry of Michigan
Access:  http://www.milkmeansmore.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/04/0002dcm_3-Ring-book.pdf​

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