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Recommended Dietary Allowance for your Toddler

Recommended Dietary Allowance for your Toddler

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You might have come across the term, “recommended dietary allowance or RDA” while reading through nutrition articles.

Thursday, May 11th, 2017

Further, as a mother you will be concerned if your toddler is getting all the nutrients required for his/her growth. Knowing a little more about RDA can help you track your toddler’s daily nutrient intake.

What is RDA?

Recommended dietary allowance or RDA is the amount of nutrients you need to eat in a day, which will help you maintain good health. The RDA is also sometimes referred as the recommended daily intake.

Who decides RDA?

In India, the National Institute of Nutrition under the Indian Council of Medical Research at Hyderabad develops the RDA.

Including a variety of whole grains, pulses, legumes, fresh and locally available fruits and vegetables, milk and milk products, fish, chicken, good fats and oils in your toddler’s daily diet can help you fulfill his/her recommended daily intakes of nutrients.

How is the RDA decided?

The RDA for a nutrient is decided keeping in mind a number of aspects of daily life that determine the daily requirement of that nutrient.

Some of these aspects are how much of the nutrient is absorbed and used by the body, physical activity of individuals, margin of safety of the nutrient, individual variation, dietary traditions and practices etc.

What are the nutrient requirements of your toddler?

Your toddler has higher requirements for certain nutrients such as fat compared to you. Your toddler’s energy needs per kilo body weight are almost double than that of yours. Requirements of calcium, vitamin C are same as yours. Therefore, it is important to provide nutrient dense foods for your toddler’s tiny tummy that provide concentrated energy along with other vitamins and minerals.

Here is the RDA for toddlers between the ages 1 to 3 years:

Energy (kcal)1060Thiamine (mg)0.5Vitamin C (mg)40
Protein (g)16.7Riboflavin (mg)0.6Folate (µg)80
Fat (g)27Niacin (mg)8Vitamin B12 (µg)0.2-1
Calcium (mg)600Pyridoxine (mg)0.9Magnesium (mg)50
Iron (mg)9Vitamin A400 µg as retinol or 3200 µg as β-caroteneZinc (mg)5

How can you ensure that you are fulfilling your toddler’s nutrient requirements? Offering a variety of healthy foods in right amounts can help you fulfil your toddler’s RDA.

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