The new CFG focuses on healthy eating in healthy environments for Canadians 2 years of age and older. Much of the messaging in the document aligns with the established CHEERS best practice recommendations. What does this mean for child care programs?

The key messages in the new CFG are:
  • Eat a variety of healthy foods each day
  • Have plenty of vegetables and fruits
  • Eat protein foods
  • Make water your drink of choice
  • Choose whole grain foods.
It also encourages Canadians to:
  • be mindful of their eating habits
  • cook more often
  • enjoy their food
  • eat meals with others

All information about the CFG is found on the Health Canada site at or [same link as before]

The CFG messaging is similar to the 2007 version with the following key differences:
  • it no longer names the food groups
  • dairy foods are now part of the Protein foods
  • more emphasis on foods that are plant-based
  • emphasis to reduce processed food consumption
Resources for Canadians

Health Canada has developed a number of resources to support Canadians to follow these recommendations and messages. They are useful for individuals and households to plan and prepare healthy meals, with easy access from tablets, smartphones, and computers. They are intended to be online, and printer-friendly. Print copies cannot be ordered at this time.

Key resources include:

*Note, Health Canada has not yet released Canada’s Healthy Eating Pattern, which is needed for menu planning. It will provide specific guidance on amounts and types of food, and information for different age groups. Intended for health professionals and policymakers, it is expected later in 2019.

What does this mean for Childcare Programs?
  1. For menu planning and food provision, please continue to use 2007 CFG.
  2. Menu planning information is found Feeding Tiny Tummies
  3. The Alberta Nutrition Guidelines for Children and Youth (ANGCY) are not affected at this time.
  4. After Canada’s Healthy Eating Pattern is released, AHS -Nutrition Services will begin revising nutrition guidelines for Childcare Programs.

For families, please feel free to share the new CFG to support eating well at home.

AHS – Nutrition Services resources for childcare are found at:

Healthy Eating Starts Here – Early Learning & Child Care

AHS – Nutrition Services is undertaking a review and revision of all its resources. Those that can be updated without the additional Healthy Eating Pattern information will be first. As soon the Healthy Eating Pattern is available from Health Canada, AHS – Nutrition Services will begin revisions of menu planning and other resources to support childcare in the provision of healthy eating choices and the creation of healthy eating environments.

Please contact your local public health dietitian with your questions.