How We Help Provide A Healthy Foundation
Here at the OCC, we believe nutrition and healthy eating habits are the foundation of growth, early child development and education. Plus, children need healthy meals to give them the energy to experience everything OCC has to offer!
OCC Snacks and Nutrition
Our Children’s Center wants to play an important role in helping your child learn about and enjoy a variety of nutritious foods each day. It is our goal to provide a variety of healthful and acceptable snacks that are nutritious for children, safe, developmentally appropriate and properly portioned for your child.
We provide your child with opportunities to enjoy healthful foods that promote growth and allow them to learn food preferences and dietary habits that help them live a healthy lifestyle so they are ready for early child development and learning.
Where to Find Our Snack Menu:
Our menu is prepared in advance each month and shared on weekly basis in each classroom, in the hallways, and in the teacher areas. See this months’ snack menu. Our snacks meet the state requirements and guidelines established by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA).
Tips and Healthy Eating at OCC
Below are a few tips for healthy eating habits in your home, and information about how we support these goals in our child day care centers:
1. Serve More Whole Grains
Dietary guidelines strongly encourage that children consume whole grain products often. Most children eat plenty of grains but few are getting enough “whole grains”. Foods that are whole grains consist of the entire grain seed. Our menu offers a minimum of one whole grain serving per day. Additionally, we aim to serve at least 3 whole grains per week at breakfast and one whole grain per week at snack.
2. Focus on Fruits, Vary the Vegetables
Dietary guidelines recommend that we choose a rainbow of colorful fruits and vegetables each day. In particular, we are encouraged to select from a variety of vegetable subgroups including dark green and orange vegetables and beans. At OCC child care centers, a medley of fresh, frozen, canned, and juiced fruits and vegetables are offered daily at meals and snacks. We limit 100 percent fruit juice to two servings per week at snack only. Additionally, we aim to serve at least three weekly servings of fresh fruit and or raw (or lightly steamed) whole vegetables.
3. Mmmmm, is for Milk (and Milk Products)
When children consume a variety of milk and milk products they are providing their bodies with vitamins and minerals essential for building and maintaining healthy bones and teeth. Dietary guidelines recommend that children age 2 to 8 years consume at least two cups per day of low fat milk or equivalent milk products each day. We offer children age two and older 1% fluid milk daily at breakfast and lunch. For children age 12-24 months, we offer whole milk only. Low-fat yogurt and cheese are also a regular part of our meals and snacks.
For more information about childhood eating guidelines and ideas for teaching your child about food, please visit the USDA.