How to Choose Best Food for Babies and Toddlers
No food is better than mother’s milk for babies on this planet. However, no mother can continue feeding their babies on the mother feed forever. There will be a time when you need to introduce a new taste to the little palate. This is where you need to stop feeding baby gradually with mother milk and try to feed him or her with solid food and this process is known as weaning.
Weaning is one another challenge for mothers of little babies especially when they are doing it for the first time. A new mother usually wonders how to make baby food in such a way that it is full of nutrition and taste good as well. Along with this they also have to choose the food which is easy to digest not only for babies but for toddlers as well.
Doctors recommend starting weaning at age of 6 months, however, as your baby is growing fast; it will be difficult to keep your baby fulfilled with mother milk only. This is because of which mothers usually start solid foods at age of 4 months minimum and at age of one your child will need full meal three to five times a day daily along with milk.
To help young mothers in this endeavor here are few ideas that can help you feed your babies and toddlers?
Introducing Food to Babies
The first step in this scenario is to understand if your baby is prepared to try solid diet and is the little stomach of your little one is ready to digest such diet?. There is one idea that can help you check your baby’s digestive system effectively. You can make your baby taste half boil egg yolk with help of teaspoon once. Observe your baby for one day and check if he shows any symptoms of stomach problems or allergies.
Remember whenever you try any new food with your baby you have to conduct this test especially when solid food comprises of honey, nuts or milk. This will help you prevent your baby from any allergic reactions that might occur. If your baby shows no such symptoms you are ready to proceed.
In the beginning, you can try soft foods with your babies such as eggs, bananas and similar fruits that do not need chewing. You can also use baby cereals available in the market however, for this you should recommend your doctor first.
Meal ideas for 1 year old
When your child will be 1 year old, this will be the time when the real challenge begins. It is because your child will develop the taste of his own with the passage of time. Your child will certainly prefer sweets over nutrients and you cannot make your toddler understand the difference between healthy and unhealthy. So now what to do? Don’t get paranoid as there are many meal ideas that can help you feed your child well and you can also please their naïve taste. The only thing you need to do is be creative in whatever you do.
Before devising any meal plan for your child you should check what your child is allergic to and what things will suit him best. Try to abstain from things you are not sure of. You should divide your child meal into 3 main courses and you should also try to plan some snacks that can keep his tummy fill in between these meals. Other than that following are some ideas that can help you in this regard:
Fruits for your baby
Fruits should be an essential part of the food for 1 year old baby as they are not the only source of quick energy but also rich in vitamins and nutrients. Always keep fruits like bananas and blueberries handy. The banana gives your baby instant energy and also ensure supply of potassium and calcium. At the other hand fruits like blueberries are filled with antioxidants for your baby. You can give these fruits to little ones as a snack or you can blend these fruits in yogurt and incorporate in baking as well. Along with these fruits, avocado is also there which is strongly recommended by nutritionist especially for toddlers and young children. The buttery texture of this fruit comes vegetables is enriched with healthy fats and play a vital role in the development of the brain. You can use it as a whole or you can make different meals out of it.
Lunch and Dinner Meals
Now let’s share some lunch ideas for 1 year old as it is an important part of the everyday meal. For this, you should be more considerate and ensure that the meal given in lunch and dinner should fulfill appetite of your baby. For meals, you can use fiber rich vegetables like broccoli or iron filled spinach. Using these vegetables in meals is comparatively easy as all you need to do is to steam these veggies and you can use it with pasta or blend it to make some puree.
Together with the veggies, you should also induce lentils in your meal plans for your child. Lentils like kidney beans are a great source of fiber and protein. You can cook these beans along with vegetables like carrots and your child will surely love the different taste of these meals. You can also cook these lentils with meat, however; you should use meat that is soft and easy to chew for your 1 year old. Of course, no one can ignore the significance of iron rich meat and recipes like a chicken puree and shepherd’s pie will make your child fall for it.
In consort with all these recipes, you should also add yogurt to meal plan for your baby. This is because yogurt can ensure healthy tummy of your baby with probiotics present in it.
Adding all these, to prepare a proper meal of your child can ensure good health of your child and your child will also feel sated. You can find a wide range of veggies, fruits and dairy products available in the market. However, using these products and ingredients in an innovative way is what will make a difference.
If you have some exciting recipe that you have tried with your baby, you can share it in comment to help other mothers know how they can do it in creative way.