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Healthy Eating Guidelines

Young girl sitting at the table with her lunch on a plate

Get Up & Grow

The Get Up & Grow: Healthy Eating and Physical Activity for Early Childhood (new window) resources support early childhood education and care settings to implement national healthy eating and physical activity guidelines. The Get Up & Grow resources consist of:

  • a Directors /Coordinators Book
  • a Staff/Carers Book
  • a Cooking for Children Book
  • a Family Book
  • posters
  • stickers
  • flyers
  • a CD-ROM containing newsletter inserts and each flyer.

These resources were updated in 2013 to reflect the revised Australian Dietary Guidelines and Healthy Eating Guidelines.


Specific Get Up & Grow resources for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander childcare educators, families and carers have been developed and include a staff handbook, seven brochures and five posters.

The Get Up & Grow resources are available in English and nine non-english languages (Traditional Chinese, Vietnamese, Filipino, Korean, Indonesian, Malaysian, Arabic, Turkish and Spanish).


Below are ten healthy eating guidelines for early childhood education and care services.  

Healthy eating guideline 1

Exclusive breastfeeding is recommended, with positive support for babies until around six months. Continued breastfeeding is recommended for at least 12 months - and longer if the mother and baby wish.

Healthy eating guideline 2

If an infant is not breastfed, is partially breastfed, or if breastfeeding is discontinued, use an infant formula until 12 months of age.

Healthy eating guideline 3

Introduce suitable solids at around six months.

Healthy eating guideline 4

Make sure that food offered to children is appropriate to the child’s age and development, and includes a wide variety of nutritious foods consistent with the Australian Dietary Guidelines.

Healthy eating guideline 5

Provide water in addition to age-appropriate milk drinks. Infants under the age of six months who are not exclusively breastfed can be offered cooled boiled water in addition to infant formula.

Healthy eating guideline 6

Plan mealtimes to be positive, relaxed and social.

Healthy eating guideline 7

Encourage children to try different food types and textures in a positive eating environment.

Healthy eating guideline 8

Offer an appropriate amount of food, but allow children to decide themselves how much they will actually eat.

Healthy eating guideline 9

Offer meals and snacks at regular and predictable intervals. 

Healthy eating guideline 10

Ensure that food is safely prepared for children to eat – from the preparation stages to consumption.


These healthy eating guidleines have been integrated into the Munch & Move training and resources.