Every child is interested in food, whether they want to eat or not. For kids who love to eat, these healthy eating worksheets will be an instant hit. And they will help picky eaters learn more about their food choices. While you might not get them eating new foods, you may be able to encourage them to at least try new foods.
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How many food groups are there?
Depending on where you live, you may have learned about 3, 4, 5, 6 or even 7 main food groups. While some places may combine groups, other places divide them. For example, in the US, Fruits & Vegetables are combined into one group, while in Australia, they are separated into two separate groups. In Canada, recently, the food groups were combined into just three — proteins, grains and fruits & vegetables.
Most of us grew up learning about 5 food groups: meat & meat alternatives, dairy, fruits & vegetables, grains & cereals, and oils.
We encourage you to read our Health Books for Kids blog post. We have there some books that we highly recommend if you want to educate your kids about healthy living.
Meat & Meat alternatives
This group consists of foods such as beef, chicken, fish, and pork, as well as protein-filled plant-based foods, such as beans and legumes. Proteins, fibre and certain minerals are the nutrients you get from this food group.
In the dairy food group, we find milk and milk-based products. So foods like milk, cheese, butter, and eggs (even though eggs are also another source of protein) are included here. They provide nutrients such as calcium and vitamins A & D.
Fruits & Vegetables
The fruits and vegetables group is a huge, varied group of foods. So here you can find a rainbow of foods, from apples to blueberries, or beets to eggplant. This is the largest source of vitamins for a healthy diet. And we’re encouraged to eat lots of green foods as well, for the fibre.
Grain & Cereals
This is the largest source of carbohydrates in a healthy diet, and the main source of energy for most of us. In North America and Europe, we have a largely wheat-based diet, eating tons of bread and bread-like products. In Asia, there is more rice as a carbohydrate staple. And in other parts of the world, corn-based products are the main grain used. But all of those are considered grains and cereals.
Oils and Fats
While this is a small group, both in the number of foods and in the amount you should have, it is an essential part of a healthy diet. A diet without a certain amount of healthy sources of oils and fats will actually result in some serious disorders, particularly in the brain. And children need even more oil servings than adults, for healthy brain development.
Recommended Healthy Food Books for Kids
Explore the world of foods with some of these great stories.
Good Enough to Eat: A Kid’s Guide to Food and NutritionOh, The Things You Can Do That Are Good for You: All About Staying Healthy (Cat in the Hat’s Learning Library)Eat More Colors: A Fun Educational Rhyming Book About Healthy Eating and Nutrition for Kids, Vegan Book, Colorful Pictures, Fun FactsEat Healthy, Feel GreatAre You What You Eat?Body Shout: A Kids Health Book About Why Eating Nutritious Food, Fitness And Fun, Works Best For Everyone!
Recommended Cooking Books for Kids
Learning about the food groups with these fun food group worksheets is a great way to start a unit exploring nutrition and cooking. And one of the best ways to learn about the food groups is to start cooking with your kids. Check out some of our favorite kid-friendly cook books.
101 Healthiest Foods for Kids: Eat the Best, Feel the Greatest-Healthy Foods for Kids, and Recipes Too!The Ultimate Kids’ Cookbook: Fun One-Pot Recipes Your Whole Family Will Love!Kids’ Fun and Healthy CookbookEat Your Greens, Reds, Yellows, and Purples: Children’s CookbookKid Chef: The Foodie Kids Cookbook: Healthy Recipes and Culinary Skills for the New Cook in the KitchenLittle Helpers Toddler Cookbook: Healthy, Kid-Friendly Recipes to Cook Together
Download the worksheets below: