By Raising Children Network
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What should children eat?

A range of suitable foods and serving sizes
  • Teenagers need to eat a variety of nutritious foods, in the right proportions. They should choose foods from each of the five food groups every day. The amount of food teenagers need depends on their body size and how active they are.
  • Daily recommended serves: This information is currently under review following the release of the new Australian Dietary Guidelines. 
  • Drink plenty of water. The cheapest, healthiest and most thirst-quenching drink is plain water. Teenagers need to drink more fluid on hot or humid days, and if they sweat or are physically active. Avoid soft drinks, fruit juices, sports drinks, energy drinks and flavoured milk.
 

Serving examples: fruit, vegetables, cereals and grains

Fruit, vegetable and cereals serving examples
  • Fruit: 1 serve = 1 medium piece such as an apple; or 2 small pieces such as 2 plums; or 1 cup chopped fruit.
  • Vegetables: 1 serve = 1 medium piece such as a potato; or ½ cup cooked vegies; or 1 cup salad vegies.
  • Cereal and grains: 1 serve = 2 slices bread; or 1 cup cooked rice/pasta/noodles; or 1 cup porridge; or 1⅓ cups breakfast cereal; or ½ cup muesli.
 

Serving examples: dairy, protein and ‘sometimes’ foods

Dairy, protein and 'sometimes' foods serving examples
  • Dairy: 1 serve = 250 ml milk (or calcium-fortified soy milk); or 2 slices cheese; or 200 gm yoghurt; or 250 ml custard. 
  • Meat, fish, poultry, eggs, nuts, legumes: 1 serve = 65-100 gm cooked meat/chicken (½ cup lean mince/2 small chops/2 slices roast meat); or 2 small eggs; or 80-120 gm cooked fish fillet; or ½ cup cooked lentils/chickpeas/canned beans; or ⅓ cup peanuts/almonds; or ¼ cup sunflower/sesame seeds.
  • ‘Sometimes’ foods: 1 serve = 1 doughnut; or 4 sweet biscuits; or 1 slice of cake; or ½ small chocolate bar; or 2 tablespoons mayonnaise; or 1 tablespoon butter/margarine/oil.
 
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  • Last Updated 31-05-2013
  • Last Reviewed 03-08-2012

Early Teens

12-15 years