It gives me great pleasure to introduce the Healthy Eating and Physical Activity Guidelines for Early Childhood Settings, an initiative that is an important element of the Australian Government’s Plan for Early Childhood and Plan for Tackling Obesity.

Our children’s early years are arguably their most important and establishing healthy behaviours from birth will lay the foundation for lifelong health and wellbeing. Nutritious food and regular physical activity supports the normal growth and development of children and reduces the risk of developing chronic lifestyle related diseases later in life.

As more children spend time in care, early childhood settings can play an important part in supporting healthy choices around nutrition and physical activity. This resource provides practical information and advice to assist practitioners, carers and families in this role.

The guidelines have been designed so that they can be applied in a variety of early childhood settings including centre-based care, family day care and preschools. They are evidence-based and consistent with current thinking on early childhood development.

They will also complement a range of other programs such as the Healthy Kids Check for all four-year-olds before they start school and resources such as the Get Set 4 Life – habits for healthy kids Guide.

These initiatives will help to ensure that all Australian children have the best possible start in life and every opportunity for the future.

The Hon Nicola Roxon
Minister for Health and Ageing