Smart Snacking for Toddlers from Intermountain Health

Industry: Healthcare

Intermountain Sevier Valley Hospital dietitian says building smart snacking habits for kids when they are toddlers can pay big health dividends later.

Richfield, UT (PRUnderground) March 25th, 2024

Little kids love to snack – and it’s good for them. Their bodies have unique nutrition needs, and smart snacks can give them the nutrients and fuel they need to grow, and to be active, happy, and healthy.

Building smart snacking habits for kids when they are toddlers can pay big health dividends later, said Sara Harcourt, a registered dietitian at Intermountain Sevier Valley Hospital.

“Smart snacks are a great way to help kids get the nutrients they need during the day, and they’re best eaten without distractions to start building healthy habits,” Harcourt said. “Toddlers are naturally distracted anyway. They are growing up in a world where electronics, phones, and TVs are everywhere. If we are on our phones or tablets during meals, we are not concentrating on what we are eating, and generally, we overeat because we are ignoring our hunger and fullness cues. We can remove these distractions for children early on to help prevent obesity and other health issues.”

March is National Nutrition Month, a national awareness campaign started by the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. There are plenty of tips and resources online ( on how to stay nourished on any budget, eat a variety of foods from all food groups, and eat with the environment in mind.

Harcourt is offering these smart snack tips for National Nutrition Month:

Plan snacks one to two hours before mealtimes. This will give kids the nutrients they need between meals and help ensure they are hungry at mealtimes.

Try making these nutrient-packed snacks:

  • Parfait: Mix yogurt, cereal or granola, and fruit.
  • Ants on a log: Fill celery sticks with peanut butter and place a few raisins in the peanut butter for “ants.”
  • Mini Pizza: Put an English muffin in the toaster, then add pizza sauce and low-fat mozzarella cheese.

Pro tip: Have kids make snacks with you.

“If they’ve made it, it helps them want to eat it, which helps prevent food waste and encourages us to eat more sustainably,” Harcourt said. “Also, making snacks with children is a great opportunity to educate them about where their food comes from, fostering a deeper understanding that cultivates more conscious consumers.”

Still have questions? Registered dietitians and nutritionists are food experts who can help you explore ways to reach your and your family’s health goals. To schedule an appointment or for more information, visit or call 435-893-0569.

About Intermountain Health

Headquartered in Utah with locations in seven states and additional operations across the western U.S., Intermountain Health is a nonprofit system of 33 hospitals, 385 clinics, medical groups with some 3,900 employed physicians and advanced care providers, a health plans division called Select Health with more than one million members, and other health services. Helping people live the healthiest lives possible, Intermountain is committed to improving community health and is widely recognized as a leader in transforming healthcare by using evidence-based best practices to consistently deliver high-quality outcomes at sustainable costs. For more information or updates, see

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