Early childhood is a critical time to set the stage for lifelong healthy weight. In the first years of life, how children are fed and what they eat can help or hinder brain development and prevent or promote obesity later in life. The materials and information below were created to support pediatricians and other professionals in engaging and educating families around early feeding practices and optimal nutrition during pregnancy and through age 2.

Key Messages

In an effort to communicate important nutrition messages consistently across sectors and settings, the Institute convened a diverse group of experts representing national healthcare organizations that care for pregnant women and young children. This group identified health behaviors suitable for key message development on topics related to food, feeding and optimal nutrition and tested these messages with parents. Developing relatable messages that various healthcare partner organizations can consistently share with pregnant women and caregivers has the potential to significantly amplify their impact.

View Key Messages

Pregnancy Handouts

Less Sugar. More Energy.

New Baby Coming? Ask for Help.

Breastfeeding Checklist

Early Childhood Handouts

More Milk. Less Stress

Enjoy the Special Moments

0-36 Months

Brain Development

7-12 Months

Let Them Play With Their Food

12-24 Months

Trying to Raise a Healthy Eater

Social Media Assets

The following images can be shared in a single post (like a slideshow) on Facebook or Instagram. Together, the images provide tips for transitioning to solids. Share the images with this example post copy: "Starting solids? Here’s how to make it easier for yourself and set healthy habits for your child. "

1. Starting Solids? Here's Help.

2. Embrace the Mess

3. Offer Different Tastes, Textures and Colors

4. Dislikes Broccoli? Try, try again!

5. Breast Milk and Formula Meet Health Needs for 1 Year

6. Save and Share

Remember to also explore the other early nutrition resources on AAP.org or HealthyChildren.org.

These resources were developed by the American Academy of Pediatrics Institute for Healthy Childhood Weight. Development was made possible through a grant from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

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American Academy of Pediatrics