Healthy eating provides essential nutrients for healthy growth and development and is important at every stage of our lives. Different types of foods provide different nutrients.
Nutrients are essential to build and strengthen bones and muscles, give you energy, keep your heart beating, keep your brain active and regulate body processes.
The key to getting all the nutrients we need for good health is to eat a wide variety of nutritious foods and in the right amounts.
The Australia guide to healthy eating is our national food selection guide that helps us to choose the food we eat. We should choose a variety of food from the five food groups:
- Wholegrain breads/cereals/rice/noodles and pasta
- Vegetables and legumes
- Dairy food – milk yoghurt & cheese
- Lean meat, fish, poultry, eggs, nuts and meat alternatives.
Foods from these five food groups provide our bodies with the most important nutrients that it needs.
The Back to Basics Program aims to get children eating more fruit and vegetables. Eating fruits and vegetables has been shown to reduce the risk of chronic diseases such as diabetes, cardiovascular disease and some cancers.
Children are often resistant to trying new fruits and vegetables. If they turn their nose up at it once – this is not an excuse for never trying the food again. The more exposure to the new food the more likely they will be to eventually accept and enjoy the new food. This program gives them a hands on approach – allowing children to touch, smell, explore, cook and taste fruits and vegetables they may have never tried before, or have refused in the past!
The cooking environment encourages them to share their new food experience with fellow students and with their family. It also teaches basic cooking skills, equipping children to be bale to make healthier food choices as an adult.
Studies show that family meal times support good health outcomes. The Back to Basics program includes parents and children to sit down together to enjoy the meal the children have prepared. This provides parents with the opportunity to model food acceptance to children.