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My 1 year old always sits and eats dinner at the table with us but sometimes she doesn't eat a lot. We want to make sure she has enough to eat before bed so my wife doesn't have to nurse as much through the night. What are some healthy and filling snacks we could use to supplement dinner time?

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3 Answers 3

up vote 6 down vote accepted

According to BabyCenter, your child's nutrition is actually a lot easier than you think it might be:

A tablespoon of peanut butter spread thinly (large dollops can cause choking) on one slice of whole wheat bread with half a cup of whole milk will supply your toddler with 82 percent of his protein needs, about a third of his daily calcium requirements, nearly all of his magnesium needs, and about half of the zinc he needs in a day. It'll also fulfill a third of his recommended servings of grains.

And just one banana and half a cup of strawberries will meet your toddler's suggested intake of fruit for the day.

This thread over at TheBump.com also includes a possible feeding schedule for a wee one that you might find enlightening.

As far as "filling" goes, FitDay had this to offer:

In fact, the most filling foods are generally healthy options because they’re packed with nutrients, fiber and even protein. Consuming the most nutrient dense foods is the best way to keep yourself full throughout the day while staying lean.

So, stick to nutrient rich foods -- especially proteins! -- and you should be fine. Also consider adding a little fat to their diet with cheese; a lot of people (myself included) find that a little cheese after dinner is immensely satisfying, and is not uncommon for a meal to end with cheese, depending on where you're from.

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To make @Aarthi's second example a little more concrete: oatmeal. It's quick and simple, filling, healthy, and babies seem to love it. –  cabbey Sep 14 '11 at 15:24
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How about carrots? Cheap, easy to prepare, healthy, orange.

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Anabel Karmel has some great cookbooks out there with tons of info and ideas.

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