Think you don’t have time to offer your baby nutritious home-made food? Think again!
In my never-ending quest to make the world a better place for hungry kids, I have asked my good friend, nutritionist Grisel Ramos-Trautmann, to share her wisdom with us. You’ll find more information about Grisel at the end of the post.
THE PLEASURE OF HOME-MADE BABY FOOD
Making your own baby food is not nearly as time consuming as you might think! You will discover that it is a PLEASURE.
The benefits of making your own baby food are enormous…
- You know exactly what your baby is eating
- You are sure that all the ingredients are fresh
- You can tailor make your baby’s food to suit his/her preferences and needs
- You will save money
- It will be a great satisfaction for you and your baby
Solid food should be introduced when your baby is 6 month old. In a younger baby, digestive and allergic problems are more likely to occur. However, in some situations your pediatrician may introduce solids at 4 months. In babies with reflux, starting solids may help prevent spitting and may improve weight gain.
Rice cereal is always the first one to be introduced. This is because rice has less potential to cause allergic reactions. Each time you introduce a new food to your baby, you need to continue feeding your baby with that same food for at least four days.
Don’t introduce two new foods at the same time.
A useful tip is to introduce new food in the morning or at lunch time. If your baby suffers an allergic reaction, it will be easier to get medical help.
Giving your baby new food is exciting, but don’t rush things. The end result will be… a happy, healthy baby, enjoying the food that is right for him!
Some ideal first food when introducing solids at 4-6 month include:
- rice cereal
- sweet potatoes
- butternut squash
Bananas and avocadoes do not need to be cooked…making them ideal convinience foods for your baby. All other fruits and veggies should be cooked.
Fruit and Vegetables should be peeled to prevent choking, remove pesticide recidues, avoid waxes, and make them easier for your baby to digest.
Carrots are a good first food for babies because – in addition to their many nutritious qualities – they are very easy to digest, rarely responsible for allergic reaction and have a flavour that babies find appealing.
BABY FOOD RECIPIES
Whole Grain Rice Cereal
- 1/4 brown rice powder
- 8 fl oz (1 cup) water
- a little breast milk or formula
- To make rice powder, grind brown rice in a blender or food processor. You can use white rice if you prefer, but brown rice has more nutrients which play an important role in your baby’s diet.
- Bring the water to boil.
- Add the rice powder, stirring constantly.
- Simmer for about 10 minutes.
- Then stir enought breast milk or formula to give the consistency that’s best for your baby.
Carrot Baby Food
- Slice or chop a carrot and either steam it or boil it in a little water until tender (this will take around 5 – 8 minutes… don’t overcook).
- Puree with a baby food processor or hand blender adding a little breast milk or formula.
- You can add olive oil and fresh herbs for older babies.
Have you ever made your own baby food before? Do you have any recipies you’d like to share? Add them to the comments area — and let me know how how your baby food turns out!
Grisel Ramos-Trautman is an expert Nutritionist and Dietician. She holds a degree in Nutrition from the School of Medical Sciences of the University of Puerto Rico and is the Food Service Manager for the HIMA Hospital in Caguas, Puerto Rico. She is also a former Puerto Rico Innovative Nutritionist-Dietician of the Year — and she can cook! Not that old dietician stuff that’s good for you, but healthy food that’s actually delicious.
Follow her on Facebook .
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