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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 (opens 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.