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Eating Well


What you eat and how much you eat is so important for your health and wellbeing.

There are loads of easy ways to help you and your family eat well.


  • • Read the label to check what the suggested portion size is. Sometimes it’s not the whole packet or bottle!

    • Offer your child a range of fruit and vegetables with as much variety of colour as possible. Praise them when they try something new and encourage them to find fruit and vegetables they enjoy.

    • Be aware of portion sizes. As a guide, the palm of a child’s hand is about the right size for a portion of fruit, vegetables, carbohydrates or protein.

    • Sit down at a table to eat together and talk at meal times. This helps to slow down your eating and helps you to enjoy your food.

    • Start off the meal with a smaller serving. You can always get more if you need to.

    • Wait before taking an extra serving. It takes about twenty minutes to realise you are full.

    • Make sure you have plenty to drink - being thirsty can cause you to eat more.

    • Increase the number of meals you make at home. Prepared foods often contain added sugars, salts and fats.

    • Encourage children to recognise when they are full.

  • • Check out the traffic light labels on foods. Look for things with less red and amber colour traffic lights and go for green.

    • Choose water or milk for you and your children to drink. Drinks like fizzy drinks, fruit juice, cordials, and squash can be a big source of sugar and calories, so it’s best to limit these.

    • Swap white carbohydrates like bread or pasta for wholegrain versions and leave the skins on potatoes.

    • Limit the amount of processed meat (e.g. ham, sausages) you eat as these contain added salt and fats. Choose lean meat, fish, eggs or pulses for a healthier source of protein. 

    • Watch out for foods that have a lot of added sugar. Things like sweets, biscuits and breakfast cereals contain lots of sugar, but not many nutrients. Fruit is great for a sweet snack without added sugar.


  • What is Healthy Start?

    Healthy Start is a national scheme to improve health. You could qualify if you're on low income or benefits and are at least 10 weeks pregnant or have a child under the age of four. You also qualify if you're pregnant and under 18.

    Your midwife, health visitor or other health professional can support you to sign up. You will be sent vouchers for cow’s milk, fresh/frozen fruit and vegetables and first infant formula milk. These can be used in local shops or supermarkets. You will also receive vouchers to exchange in pharmacies for:

    • Women’s vitamins (contain Vitamin C, D and Folic Acid) - available from week 10 of pregnancy up to baby’s first birthday
    • Children’s Vitamins (contain Vitamin A, C and D) – from ages 6 months to 4 years

    For families who are not eligible for the scheme, all Norfolk Lloyds Pharmacies sell Healthy Start vitamins at a cheaper price than branded vitamins.

    For more information on the scheme and a list of shops accepting vouchers *Click Here*   

  • Visit the Change4Life website for recipe ideas and healthy eating. 

    You can also download the Change4Life food scanner app from here. 


  • You can use the Change4Life Sugar Calculator to see how much sugar is in food and what is recommended for your child's age. 

  • All children in Year Reception, 1 and 2 will receive free school meals. 

    From Year 3, children whose parents or carers get one or more of the following may also be able claim free school meals;

    • Universal Credit (provided the family has an annual net earned income of no more than £7,400)
    • Income Support
    • Income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance
    • Income-related Employment and Support Allowance
    • Support under Part 6 of the Immigration and Asylum Act 1999
    • The guarantee element of Pension Credit
    • Child Tax Credit (with no Working Tax Credit) and an annual income of no more than £16,190
    • Working Tax Credit run on – paid for four weeks after a claimant stops qualifying for Working Tax Credit

    To apply for free school meals you will need to fill out a form, this will be available at your child's school. 

    For support you can contact the Free School Meals Team on 01603 222518 or by email at

  • Anyone can find themselves and their family in need of help for lots of different reasons.

    If you are struggling to feed your family, you can get help or support from a local foodbank or community fridge.

    To find out more *Click Here*

Eatwell Guide

Use the Eatwell Guide to help you get a balance of healthier and more sustainable food.

It shows how much of what you eat overall should come from each food group.

Eatwell Guide

Fruit and vegetables

Eat at least 5 portions of different fruit and vegetables every day

Potatoes, bread, rice, pasta and other starchy carbohydrates

Choose wholegrain or higher fibre verions with less added fat, salt and sugar

Oils & Spreads

Choose unsaturated oils and use in small amounts

Dairy and alternatives

Choose lower fat and lower sugar options

Beans, pulses, fish, eggs, meat and other proteins

Eat more beans and pulses, 2 portions of fish per week, one of which is oily. Eat less red and processed meat

Pictures of various unhealthy foods

Eat Less

Eat less often and in small amounts


6-8 a day

Water, lower fat milk, sugar-free drinks including tea and coffee all count.

Limit fruit juice and/or smoothies to a total of 150ml a day.

Check the label on 
packaged foods

Nutritional labels example

Choose foods lower 
in fat, salt and sugars

Who Can Help?

If you are concerned about your child’s weight or eating habits and feel you need support then you can contact the Healthy Child Programme by calling Just One Number on 0300 300 0123 or texting Parentline on 07520631590. Our opening hours are 8am-6pm Monday-Friday (excluding bank holidays) and 9am-1pm on Saturdays.

If you are 11-19 you can text ChatHealth on 07480635060 for confidential advice from one of our team.

Alternatively you can go to see your GP to discuss concerns.

To speak to other Norfolk parents and carers, you can join our online community forum. CLICK HERE

Other Useful Pages

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