Mike Hedges AM Welcomes new healthy eating guidance
Local Assembly Member Mike Hedges AM for Swansea has welcomed for new guidance for nurseries, to help them ensure they provide the children they care for with healthy food and drink.
The guidance is designed to contribute to preventing obesity in Wales and help ensure more children can achieve and maintain a healthy weight as they grow and develop.
The Welsh Government are launching a 12 week consultation on new standards and best practice guidance for food and nutrition, such as the provision of meals, snacks and drinks for 1-12 year olds in childcare settings.
The AM is encouraging parents in Swansea East to have their say. The consultation can be found here https://beta.gov.wales/food-and-nutrition-childcare-settings
Mike Hedges AM said “Eating food that’s nutritious and healthy is really important for children. It helps them grow up healthy as well as well as protecting teeth from decay.”
“Parents want to know that the food they receive in childcare settings is healthy and nutritious. I would encourage parents across Swansea East to have their say”
Children attending childcare settings from a young age may be receiving up to 90% of their food and nutritional intake, including snacks and drinks, in those settings, if they attend full day care. Encouraging children to eat a balanced diet made up of a variety of nutritious foods can help establish positive eating habits to take into later life and adulthood.
The new standards and guidance includes accompanying menus and recipes for settings. It aims to support settings to meet the childcare regulations for food and drink, but to also help parents in being more aware of what settings offer their children.
The guidance sets out up-to-date, evidence-based food standards and how to implement them in practice so that childcare settings can:
• Serve a range of tasty, nutritious meals to help develop good eating habits
• Ensure portion sizes are appropriate for the age of the children
• Serve snacks that are nutritious, with little or no sugar and salt
• Provide healthy drinks that are hydrating and protective to teeth i.e milk and water.
The Child Measurement Programme for 2017 shows that around a quarter of children (27.4%) aged 4-5years old are classified as overweight/obese in Wales