Registered Nurses' Association of Ontario

Nursing Best Practice Guidelines

Parents and Children's Role

Parents and children each have a role in developing a healthy feeding relationship!


  • Plan for positives – expect success
  • Prepare and put food on the table
  • Provide support as your child develops eating habits


  • Choose to eat
  • Choose what to eat from food that is offered
  • Choose how much to eat

Children can regulate their own calorie intake. Help parents let children regulate naturally by allowing children to eat when they are hungry and stop when they are full. Parents need to offer a variety of healthful foods at regular meal and snack times, avoid “food handouts,” and try not to reward or punish with certain foods.