With stories on childhood obesity and nutrition regularly in the news, the relaunch of the Infant & Toddler Forum (ITF) has been well timed.

The website will provide health and childcare professionals and families easier access to the Forum's free expert advice.

The Forum contains a group of leading experts in nutrition and development in the under threes and aims to enhance the availability and quality of information about toddler feeding.

Studies continue to highlight the lack of clear guidelines on healthy eating and active play, and the ITF's own research shows that over a third of parents are confused about or unaware of how toddlers' nutritional needs differ from those of adults .

Dr Atul Singhal, Professor of Paediatric Nutrition at the UCL Institute of Child Health and Chair of the ITF, says: "If we're going to make a difference to children's health and wellbeing, professionals and families need easy access to credible, simple advice on good toddler nutrition and eating behaviour.

"Our aim is to provide anyone who has responsibility for feeding toddlers with better practical support, to encourage positive feeding habits from an early age. The new website makes our online resources more available to those looking for information on what and how to feed the under threes."

Content is categorised into four main areas: healthy Eating; difficulties in Feeding; growth and Development; and common Nutritional and Eating Problems.

A dedicated area for Health and Childcare Professionals provides the ITF's highly respected Factsheets, reports, advice from the Forum members, and information on Study Days and training.

The site is designed to be easy-to-use with mobile devices like smartphones and tablets, so even those looking for information on the go will have it at their fingertips.

The website's area devoted to families - Little People's Plates - is the one-stop-shop for parents and carers looking for easy-to-follow advice. At the click of a button you can find simple tips and useful resources to help you make healthier choices, such as portions sizes, the Ten Steps for Healthy Toddlers (a guide on what food to offer, what behaviour to encourage, and how best to manage mealtimes), and bespoke guidance from the interactive Tot It Up food and activity calculator.

You can visit the new website at www.infantandtoddlerforum.org

Posted by Penny Hosie