Food and Nutrition

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Information for Families about Healthy Eating

The Australian Dietary Guidelines

The Australian Dietary Guidelines are evidence-based national guidelines which include information on the nutrition of children from birth to adolescence. The revised Australian Dietary Guidelines and companion resource – Healthy eating for children were released in February 2013 by the National Health and Medical Research Council for the Department of Health, details of which are available

Nutrition and Physical Activity This contains information on nutrition and healthy eating, physical activity and promoting healthy weight.

Nutrition and Healthy Eating

The Healthy Living and Chronic Disease Programs Branch is responsible for developing and evaluating national policy, resources and initiatives in the areas of nutrition and healthy eating, health promoting physical activity and promoting healthy weight.

Physical Activity and Sedentary Behaviour

Being physically active and limiting your sedentary behaviour every day is essential for your health and wellbeing. Regular physical activity has many health benefits and plays an important role in promoting healthy weight. It can help prevent heart disease, type 2 diabetes and some cancers, and also improve psychological wellbeing. Australia’s Physical Activity and Sedentary Behaviour Guidelines outline the minimum levels of physical activity required for health benefits and include ways to incorporate physical activity and minimise sedentary behaviour in everyday life.

Promoting Healthy Weight

Promoting healthy weight focuses on the prevention and management of overweight and obesity. In Australia, the 1995 National Nutrition Survey showed that some 56% of the adult population (18 years and over) were overweight, with 19% of these classified as obese.

It’s easy to find ways to get some extra fruit and vegies in your day. Eating plenty of fruit and vegies not only contributes to good health, but also protects against a number of diseases and helps maintain a healthy weight. Most Australians eat only half the amount of fruit and vegies recommended for good health. Adults need to eat at least 2 serves of fruit and 5 serves of vegies each day. The amount children need depends on their age. Here you can find out about the benefits of fruit and vegies, nifty ways to get more fruit and vegies into your day, plus some super simple tasty recipes.

Healthy Kids

With more than one in five kids in NSW overweight or obese, this joint initiative between the NSW Ministry of Health, NSW Department of Education, Office of Sport and the Heart Foundation.

The overall goal of the Healthy Kids website has remained the same over the past decade – to support teachers, parents, carers, coaches, health professionals, kids and teens to make healthy choices by providing a “one stop shop” of current and credible information, resources and support materials about healthy eating and physical activity.

On the Healthy Kids website, you will find kid friendly recipes, ideas for physical activity and practical ways to improve nutrition, as well as specific factsheets for families and children. You can also sign up for a quarterly e-newsletter which informs our subscribers of topical or new information on the site.

The website content is structured around five key messages:

The website content is structured around five key messages:

*Get active for an hour or more each day.

*Choose water as a drink.

*Eat more fruit and vegetables.

*Turn off the TV or computer and get active.

*Eat fewer snacks and select healthier alternatives.


  • Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (2011), Keeping baby safe: A guide to infant and nursery products, for information about cots, mattresses and nursery equipment that meets Australian Standards.
  • Australian Government Department of Health and Ageing (2009), Get up & grow: Healthy eating and physical activity for early childhood—Directors/co-ordinators book.
  • Cavallini, I and Tedeschi, M (eds) (2008), The languages of food: Recipes, experiences, thoughts. Reggio Children Publications.
  • Food Standards Australia, for information on food safety and food handling,
  • National Health and Medical Research Council (2003), Dietary guidelines for children and adolescents in Australia.
  • National Health and Medical Research Council, Staying healthy in child care, for information on hygiene, immunisation and exclusion of children with an illness.
  • Nitzke, S, Riley, D, Ramminger, A and Jacobs, G (2010), Rethinking nutrition: Connecting science and practice in early childhood settings. Redleaf Press, St Paul, USA.
  • Oberklaid, F (2004), Health in early childhood settings. Pademelon Press, NSW