Q: "My preschoolers love 2-minute noodles. There is such a range of noodles on offer. It would be helpful to know the good from the bad."
A: Nutritionist Bronwen King responds:
"The nutritional content of instant noodles can vary hugely. Traditional quick-cook noodles are fried during processing. This means that although they do not seem fatty, most have a fat content of over 15g per single serving pack, which is high for an everyday food. Given that instant noodles are also high in sodium and artificial flavours, they are not a nutritious choice for children and can contribute to weight gain. There are, however, low-fat versions on the market. Maggi has just relaunched their 2-minute noodles with a much reduced fat content (from 15.9g fat per serve to just 2.2g). They are now made with less sodium and all natural flavours. This is clearly a better choice among instant noodles.
Remember, instant noodles served on their own should be an occasional food only. They do not have significant quantities of the nutrients kids need to grow and stay healthy. A better habit to encourage is having noodles or pasta as part of a meal with meat (or other protein) and good quantities of vegetables."