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Setting the Table: giving children the best nutritional start in life

With support from its partners, NHS Health Scotland has revised ‘Setting the Table’, its nutritional guidance and food standards for early years childcare providers in Scotland.

Setting the Table is an update of the ‘Nutritional Guidance for the Early Years:  Food Choices Aged 1-5 years in Early Education and Childcare Settings’ produced in 2006 and combines the content of ‘Adventures in Foodland (NHS Health Scotland 2004)’.

Setting the Table is being distributed to all childcare providers in Scotland from mid to late January.   It is also available to download from the NHS Health Scotland website.

The guidance promotes the importance of good nutrition in the early years offering advice on food standards, providing breakfast, pack lunches, snack guidance, sample menus and recipes.  Further practical advice is offered on providing for: special diets, religious faiths and beliefs and children with additional needs.  This revised edition includes guidance on the nutritional needs of children from birth to 1 year; and, offers helpful advice on topics such as breastfeeding, formula feeding, weaning, and menu planning for babies.

The guidance has a wide reach offering advice across all facets of early years including to early learning and childcare settings, parents and carers, child minders and caterers; and, highlights the important role played by them in shaping future patterns of eating behaviour in young children.

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