Your baby is the joy of your life. You want all the best for them, want to give them all your love and care, especially when it comes to feeding them. But how well do you know what to feed them in the first year of their lives? Are you sure that you are giving them all the nutrients they need for their healthy growth and development?
Here are some tips to broaden your knowledge.
Breast milk is the most nutritious milk a baby can have. It has all the good stuff that is best for them, like antibodies. It helps them to fight off viruses and bacteria. It has enzymes, fatty acids, and microbial factors. The mother’s milk helps their baby develop and grow correctly and fight diseases such as respiratory and gastrointestinal, asthma, diarrhea, and infection. Breastfeeding is also linked with the children having higher IQs. And most importantly, the bond between mother and child becomes stronger.
Formula feeding is feeding your infant with prepared formula rather than your milk. Formula milk also gives them all the nutrients they need; it just doesn’t have the immunity-boosting element of breastmilk. Sometimes a mother needs to give their child formula if she has an illness that she could pass on to her baby, or sometimes the mother has to work, or there is a case that the mother doesn’t have enough milk to sustain their infant.
Know how to tell when your baby is hungry; if they fret way before their feeding time, then it might be time to give them baby food along with their milk. In their six months, if they can sit on their own, can hold their head up, show interest in the food you are eating, then it is time to wean them.
Weaning your baby is essential because, by time, their milk can no longer satisfy their hunger. Read some helpful weaning tips if you are a first-time mother. You should know what nutritious food to give them. And weaning is gradual; substitute one feed at a time. Furthermore, remember not to limit your baby’s food choices; give them a wide variety of food early. It can teach them healthy eating habits.
The Nutrients They Need
A balanced and healthy diet is essential for your baby’s needs; here are some nutrients they need in their growing up period.
- Calcium helps build strong bones and teeth. Milk and all dairy products, green leafy vegetables have calcium.
- Folate helps cell divide; folate is vitamin B. Green leafy vegetable egg, and citrus food is rich in folate
- Fat creates energy and helps brain development. You can find it on rice, milk, red meat, nuts, and butter.
- Iron builds blood cells and helps the brain to develop; you can have this from red meat, fish, poultry, and seafood.
- Zinc helps cells grow and repair themselves. Red meat, poultry, bean, nuts, grain, and cereals have a lot of zinc.
- Protein and carbohydrates give baby the fuel and energy to grow. Give your baby eggs, fish, seafood, dairy food, and meat, they are sources of protein and carbohydrates
Also, vitamin A (B1thiamine and B2 riboflavin) and Vitamin D are vitamins that you need to give your baby, as they have proven to be extremely beneficial.
All in all, you can say that infant nutrition is needed for your baby to help them grow strong and healthy. Furthermore, it can help the baby establish a pattern of healthy eating habits. It can serve as a guide that your child can apply throughout their life.