Developing evidence-based recommendations for promoting nutrition and healthy feeding patterns for children from birth through 24 months
Feeding practices and patterns during the first two years of life are important for nutrition, both physical and cognitive growth and development, and establishing the foundation for healthy eating habits. With more than one quarter of U.S. children overweight or obese by the time they enter kindergarten there is an urgent need and an important window of opportunity to establish healthy dietary behaviors early in life. Healthy Eating Research (HER) proposes to convene an expert panel focused on identifying best nutrition and feeding practices for infants and toddlers, with an emphasis on healthy eating, dietary quality, portion sizes, and mealtime environment. The panel will be comprised of roughly 12-14 health professionals from a variety of backgrounds such as nutrition, pediatrics, family medicine, child development, psychology, nursing, pediatric dentistry, and others who have expertise in nutrition and feeding practices, and growth and development for infants and toddlers. Recommendations resulting from this panel will be a critical resource to federal, state, and local policymakers in future efforts to draft and implement policies aimed at reducing overweight and obesity in early childhood.