Updated! 5532 guide to portion size for preschoolers

18th July 2019

Our 5532 guide to portion sizes for 1-4 year olds is all about helping you provide young children with a healthy, balanced diet to provide them with all the nutrients they need to grow and be healthy.

First published in 2014, these new versions, available to download below, provide updated information about sugars in children’s diets about vegetarian and vegan diets and include an updated range of food examples. We've also got some top tips on getting portion size right in the early years on the next page.


5532 poster:


Young children need a variety of foods from the main food groups:

  • Starchy foods – about 5 portions a day
  • Fruit and vegetables – 5 or more portions a day
  • Dairy foods – about 3 portions a day
  • Protein foods – about 2 portions a day (3 portions for vegetarian or vegan children)


Healthy eating habits developed in the early years can set a child up for good health in later life and a healthy diet is about getting the right balance of foods and drinks in the right amounts. The guide has portion size examples for a range of foods to give you an idea of what is appropriate to offer – children’s appetites can vary a lot so let them decide how much to eat.

For a quick reference guide – download the 5532 poster and there are more food examples and further information on issues like snacking, sugar, vegan diets and supplements in the 5532 booklet

5532 booklet - information on fruit and vegetables:


FileFile size
Download this file (BNF 5532 Leaflet_2019.pdf)BNF 5532 Leaflet_2019.pdf1616 kB
Download this file (BNF 5532 Poster 2019.pdf)BNF 5532 Poster 2019.pdf839 kB