Nutritional experiences in early life can have a long-lasting outcome.
To encourage the support of healthy eating habits, here are the steps to— distinguish ‘the common eating problems—from chronic disorders.
Feeding Pattern in Newborns and Young Children
Feeding is the main event in the life of a newborn and the young child. The eating experience affects not only children’s physical growth and health but their psychosocial and emotional development as well.
The Beginning three years of life are very challenging. During the first three months of self-regulation, the child should be able to link the experiences of hunger and satiety to develop a regular feeding pattern. During second phase–three to seven months–the infant and the parents must form an attachment that lets them communicate with each other. At the third stage–six to 36 months– the child should be trained to gradually “separate” emotionally from the parents and discover a sense of independence. Parents in rural society need to be educated on this.
Issues with Feeding
Common conditions include poor eating habits, feeding behaviour problems and unusual or unhealthy food habits, especially in the rural areas. Where most feeding problems in infants and young child are temporary, social and emotional development can be impacted, during late childhood. Behavioural issues are more frequent in those with early childhood feeding problems.
“Early Childhood feeding Experiences” affect the health and psychological well-being of these underprivileged children. Most feeding problems have their roots in infancy and childhood. As a society, we need to help solve this problem.
Some questions that we need to ask ourselves—
What are the most effective ‘Community-based Interventions’ that have an impact on early feeding behaviour?
—Behavioral study in childhood feeding has focused on breastfeeding, teaching parents the appropriate feeding methods. These programs are directed, to specific feeding disorders, including obesity, failure to thrive and anorexia nervosa.
Many studies have examined the proposal that ‘breastfeeding protects against the development of obesity later in life”.
Parental participation is instrumental in establishing and changing eating patterns in children.
Nurturing Infants and Young Children is an event that influences their growth and development. The early experiences with feeding set the stage for healthy feeding-associated behaviour in later childhood and adulthood. Since the earlier outset of problem results in more significant consequences, preventing feeding disorders and related behaviour problems should be targeted towards guiding these patterns.
Policies and Services needed–
- Promote and support breastfeeding. Educate the Pregnant and New mothers on the advantages and maintenance of breastfeeding.
- Advocate “Nutrition in Schools”. Support nutrition education in classrooms. Funding healthy school lunches and free school breakfasts are very crucial.
- Regular physical education in schools must be administered to promote a healthy lifestyle.
- Healthy eating habits promotion through public-health messages.
So, to be able to achieve all of the above we need help from our skilled team ‘EKAM Foundation”. EKAM’s mission is to build and sustain a community culture and policy that supports, motivates and encourages people to adopt and maintain a healthy lifestyle. Log on to EKAM at www.ekamoneness.org to get a better picture of their services.