Grade-schoolers need about 2 to 3 servings of vegetables daily. The portion size for each serving should be about:
- 1 cup of raw leafy veggies (size of a baseball)
- ½ cup of other vegetables, raw or cooked
- ¾ cup of vegetable juice
A balanced diet for school-age children includes 2 to 3 servings of fruits daily. Each serving looks like this:
- A small fruit (size of a tennis ball)
- ½ cup of sliced fruits
- ¾ cup of fruit juice (choose unsweetened where possible)
Grade-schoolers need approximately 6 to 11 servings of grains every day. As much as possible, choose the whole grain variety for them. The portion size for each serving of grains look like this:
- 1 regular size of bread (size of a CD cover)
- ½ cup of rice (size of ½ baseball)
- 1 cup of cereals
- 1 small piece of pancake
To help build their muscles, a school-age child needs to eat 2 to 3 servings of protein foods. For portion size of each serving, refer to the examples below:
- 1 piece of egg
- ½ cup of cooked dried beans
- 2 to 3 ounces (57 to 85 grams) of lean meat, poultry, fish, or tofu
- 2 tablespoons of peanut butter
School-age children still need milk and other dairy products as their source of calcium. Each day, they need to have 2 to 3 servings, with each serving amounting to:
- 1 cup of milk or yogurt (choose low-fat and unsweetened where possible)
- 1 ounce of cheese (28 grams)
Besides these, a healthy balanced diet for school-age children also includes healthy fats, which they can get from nuts and seeds, avocado, fatty fish, and healthy oils used for cooking.
As you instill food portion control in your kids, over time, they will be able to take it with them wherever they go-be it in the school or another house.
Learn more about School-Age Children here.