What’s Best for the Baby?
Food is one major source that nourishes the body, making one healthy and strong. Infant nutrition is important for ensuring right development, preventing illness and maximizing cognitive skills and mental capacities. No other developmental stage calls for such strong attention towards nutrition. But which food is best for the baby?
A Mother’s Concern
Nourishing your baby with the right kind of food can be the biggest concern for a mother. If you are a nursing mother, then you may believe that your child gets all the necessary nourishment through the mother’s milk. It may be true if you watch your own diet and ensure that it is well balanced with micronutrients such as vitamins, minerals and phytonutrients. A typical modern diet composed of sugar products, white flour, additives and commercial fats and oils which do not build or nourish will obviously result in mother’s milk lacking in quality nutrients. Good quality proteins, fats and complex carbohydrate rich diet will be the perfect nutrition for a nursing mother and eventually her baby. It is strongly recommended that a baby is nourished with mother’s milk at least for a minimum period of 8-12 months. This is essential to build resistance and for various other vital purposes.
Bottom line, every woman will breast feed in a perfect world with perfect nourishment. But regrettably, that perfect world is a far off dream. What would mothers with low milk supply do? What if the mother is unwell or what if the baby is adopted? Fortunately it is possible to prepare wholesome baby formula at home, devoid of chemicals and artificial additives, though it may not come as a perfect substitute for mother’s milk.
Supplementary Diet for your Baby
An infant requires a full spectrum of nutrients during the first year of life, which only mother’s milk can provide. But when it is no longer a sole source of nutrition, then here are a few options that you can look at.
• At four months, egg yolk can be introduced. It is found to be rich in cholesterol, choline and other brain nourishing food. A pinch of salt will supply a variety of trace elements too.
• Cod liver oil, an excellent source of omega-3 fatty acids, DHA, EPA, Vit D and A can be introduced slowly starting with ¼ teaspoon mixed with fresh orange juice.
• If the baby seems hungrier, then a mashed ripe banana can be added to the diet. It has a rich supply of amylase enzyme that helps to digest carbohydrates.
• After six months pureed meat can be introduced to add iron, zinc and protein in the diet.
• By eight months to one year the baby can be introduced to a variety of homemade foods, one at a time going easy on the cereals as they may develop allergies, not having the enzymes to handle it.
• Say no to juice, soy foods, margarine, shortening and commercial dairy products in the first few months.
• Cereal gruels can be added on completion of one year.
Maximize your baby’s health with minimum efforts at home.
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