Nations have food habits due to climatic conditions, fauna, and flora. This also applies to baby food. In Cuba, Spain, or Greece, babies are accustomed to orange juice and mashed potatoes. And in Israel — with avocados. In our countries, it is customary to introduce babies to fruit through apple juice and apple puree. And it’s not following the tradition, but taking care of the normal conditions for digestion and absorption of food.
Dishes familiar to some peoples are exotic to others not only in taste. The memory of the enzymes that break down food is also written in the genes and is inherited.
Nutrition of the infant begins to need correction at the age of 6 months and weight. This coincides with the appearance of the first tooth. Nature signals that the baby needs food other than mother’s milk. And since the baby’s gastrointestinal tract often reacts painfully to changes in the mother’s diet, the new food is introduced carefully.
Feeding a baby from birth
Breastfeeding is the best food for a newborn baby.
If the mother is unable to breastfeed her child, adapted formula feeds, which contain the main components of mother’s milk, will help.
The quality and composition of formula is continually being improved. When still at the maternity hospital you should take advice from the neonatologist, who sees the baby, what formula should be given to the baby, if the baby needs supplementary feeding or transfer to artificial feeding. Even if you have plenty of milk — start building a breast milk bank. If the problem is urgent, talk to the pediatrician who sees your baby.
Why is it important to talk to your doctor? When choosing the formula that is best for your baby, your doctor will consider what kind of nutritional problems the formula solves:
- for healthy babies, taking into account age: newborns, first month of life and older;
- For infants, with special nutritional needs;
- therapeutic mixes.
Breast-fed children do not need water for the first 5-6 months — until the introduction of complementary foods. Mother’s milk contains enough water (see composition). The mother’s breast adapts to the baby’s needs, including fluid, and the composition of the formula is the same. Babies on IV (artificial feeding) should be given water from the first days of life. This will help prevent constipation and other digestive problems.
Additionally, the amount of liquid in the form of water is 50-200 ml (in the hot season) per day. Water is given between feedings and at night when the child wakes up, 1-2 teaspoons. The baby should be given water from a spoon, not a bottle.
Water should be freshly boiled, at room temperature, with no added sugar.
From the age of 1-2 months, babies on IV can add a couple of drops of fresh lemon juice, as well as decoction of rosehips or apples, increasing from a few drops to 5 teaspoons per day.
Black and green teas are not recommended for children under 2 years of age. Special infant teas based on: chamomile, mint, fennel, melissa have a beneficial effect on digestion. Tea with fennel has diarrheal properties, helping to eliminate gas during bloating. Tea with chamomile soothes, reduces inflammation and pain. If necessary, you can feed the baby from the second week of life.
Correcting the infant’s diet
If the mother’s diet is complete and balanced, in terms of nutrients, vitamins and minerals, it is possible to breastfeed a baby only until 6 th month. Situations are different, so it is important to know what a baby can eat up to one year of age, except mother’s milk and formula in the case of IV.
What can I give my baby from 2 months of age?
Often the need to correct the baby’s diet with vitamins and minerals occurs before 6 months of age. The first of the vitamins that an infant additionally needs is vitamin C. In the summertime, freshly squeezed apple juice is recommended, from 2 drops increasing to 1 teaspoon, in the wintertime — rosehip decoction.
What can I give my baby from 4 months of age?
Fruit and vegetable juices and purees.
Fruit purees for babies should be freshly made or in the form of canned juices especially for babies.
The sweet taste of fruit puree pleases children and they often refuse other foods. It is therefore better to introduce juices and purees of unsweetened fruits or vegetables, without added sugar.
Sweet or sour-sweet juices can be diluted with boiled water at room temperature, at first in half, gradually changing to natural juice completely. The first time we give a few drops, then half a teaspoon, gradually increasing to 4-6 teaspoons (20-30 ml) by the end of the month. This helps avoid allergic reactions and digestive problems. The new juice is introduced, when the child got used to the previous one. It is better to start with apple juice and apple puree, and then — depending on the time of year and the needs of the child.
Cherry, pomegranate juice, juice from the black currant and blueberries — contain tannins and fixing effect.
Beet, cabbage and plum juices are recommended for children with a tendency to constipation.
Grape juice before 6 months of age is not recommended, since it contains a lot of glucose and fructose, which may increase fermentation and lead to bloating of the intestines.
From 4, 5 months, children are advised cottage cheese, specially prepared in the conditions of the dairy or baby food shop. Start with ¼ teaspoon and bring the amount to 20 grams per day. A child of the first year of life can not be fed cottage cheese, which is sold in stores and at the market. If there is no dairy kitchen, you can make cottage cheese at home.
At the same age, the doctor may recommend to include in the diet steep egg yolk, ¼ of the yolk, gradually increasing. You can mix the yolk with milk porridge.
At what age should complementary foods be given?
Often parents want to get a child used to adult foods as soon as possible. Take your time! The first complementary food in the gv should be introduced at 6 months, sometimes a little earlier, which often coincides with the eruption of the first tooth. The child’s need for energy, iron, vitamins and minerals increases. Milk is no longer enough. It is with the purpose of providing the necessary nutrients that complementary foods for children are introduced. If it is 6 months of age, but the baby’s teeth are not in a hurry to appear, it is necessary to consult your pediatrician. In most cases, it speaks not about individual differences, but about a lack of calcium in the diet of the mother and a lack of vitamin D in the child.
The first complementary food is introduced earlier than the formula at 4.5-5 months of age. It is definitely not worth introducing complementary food at 3 months of age. The baby’s gastrointestinal tract is not ready to digest and absorb any food at 3 months.
How to introduce complementary foods correctly, is there a chart of complementary foods by day?
Yes, there is a certain scheme of introducing complementary foods. Regardless of the age of the child, the order of introduction of complementary foods should be followed.
What can I give my baby at 6 months?
The first complementary food baby in HF is milk porridge or vegetable puree.
Introduction of complementary foods in gf for infants who are gaining weight well, it is better to start with vegetable puree. Vegetable puree for children should be made from vegetables that mom eats all the time. There are children who categorically refuse to eat vegetables, they receive the first complementary food for the baby in the form of porridge. When the baby gets used to the vegetable puree, add some vegetables. Carrots, broccoli, white cabbage, pumpkin, spinach can be added to potatoes.
Kashi as the first complementary food is recommended in the first place for those children who do not put on enough weight. Cereals are rich in protein, B vitamins, magnesium, phosphorus and iron. It is important to keep in mind that a baby of 6-7 months is not able to digest any cereal.
What porridge should be used to begin complementary food? At 5-6 months, it is necessary to begin with porridge which does not contain gluten. Therefore, the best cereals for complementary feeding are:
- rice porridge;
Porridge for the first complementary food is made from cereals of the same kind. Older children can be given porridge once or twice a day. Over time, you can add carrots and apples to the porridge. Pumpkin for complementary foods is also useful.
Well-digested children’s porridge for complementary food, which is offered specifically for children’s nutrition.
Nutrition at 7-8 months of age.
At 7-8 months, your baby is already receiving one complementary food in the form of porridge, and the second complementary food — vegetables. Introduce the third complementary food.
Dairy products specially formulated cow’s milk fermented with pure cultures of lactic bacteria or fungal starter, are better than whole milk, reduces fermentation and displaces pathogenic flora.
Along with kefir, the baby is given crackers or cookies, starting at 5 grams and increasing to 20 grams per day by the year. Since the child is not able to chew, cookies and crackers soaked. You can also give cottage cheese together with sour milk and breadcrumbs.
Sour milk products with cookies and cottage cheese replace another daily breastfeeding or adapted formula.
At 7-8 months of age, we introduce meat into the child’s diet. Given the enzymatic immaturity of the baby’s gastrointestinal tract, the lack of teeth for chewing, mashed meat for children thoroughly grind until homogeneous. At home it is difficult to prepare mashed meat of the required degree of crushing and consistency. It is better to use canned baby industrial production.
For feeding infants are recommended lean meats: veal, tongue, turkey, rabbit, chicken, liver.
Meat dishes are given 2-3 times a week in the form of puree, souffle or pudding.
Canned meat for children is kept for 1 year, after opening — in the refrigerator up to 24 hours.
complementary food at 8-9 months
At 8-9 months, the child receives breast milk or formula for morning and evening feedings.
Vegetable purees are prepared including different vegetables for complementary feeding. The list
Vegetable list expands: cauliflower, zucchini, turnips, parsley and dill, and by the end of 9 months — green onions and lettuce. If a child does not like some vegetables, do not insist, offer them once every 2 weeks. Mix vegetable purees with meat purees, it will diversify your baby’s diet.
At this age, the baby is able to chew small pieces of cooked vegetables, fruit, cookies, teeth, gums and tongue. So try not to rub the puree through a sieve, and crush with a fork. Feed a child such mashed potatoes in small portions, filling with a coffee spoon.
Milk porridge — complementary foods remain and expand the range of permitted cereals. In addition to buckwheat, oatmeal, rice and semolina porridge recommended pearl barley and barley.
Boil the cereal for porridge with water, then add warmed milk and bring it to a boil again. Butter, 3-5 grams, is added to the porridge taken off the fire, so that when boiling it does not destroy vitamin A.
Vegetable oils are rich in polyunsaturated fatty acids, vitamins, improve skin condition and body defenses. It is recommended to add them to vegetable puree or to milk porridge.
At 9-10 months, we cook baby vegetable soups, as well as soups in meat broth, chicken or turkey broth. At lunch, we give him a piece of bread in his hand, encouraging him to bite and chew with his gums on his own.
Include in the diet of the fish, boiled oceanic (hake, pollack, cod) or river (pikeperch, carp) which are carefully prepared at home, separating the flesh from the bones, or use canned food for children.
Feeding at 1 year of age
At 11-12 months, the child continues to receive 500 ml of milk in the morning and evening feedings. During the day, the diet and meals become more and more similar to those for older children.
How is pedagogical complementary feeding different from pediatric complementary feeding?
Proponents of pedagogical complementary feeding — aim to awaken the baby’s interest in new foods. The bottom line is that the child is allowed to try food from the common table at will, and the main food up to 1 year remains mother’s milk. Two conditions are important: the age of the child over 6 months and a healthy family diet.
Arousing the child’s interest is good and possible, but not all foods and dishes from the common table are appropriate in the infant’s diet. Much of what adults eat, the baby’s gastrointestinal tract is not able to digest and assimilate. Eating fresh and delicious food for adults can have serious health consequences for the child.
Babies try absolutely everything they can get their hands on, whether it’s a tuber of potatoes or shoelaces from daddy’s shoes, so a baby’s interest cannot be the basis for their dietary intake.
Classic or pediatric complementary feeding means that new foods are introduced into the child’s diet in a consistent and planned manner, gradually mixed, expanding the diet. The structure of the food changes from liquid to mushy, becoming thicker and firmer. This helps the baby develop chewing skills. The goal of pediatric or traditional complementary feeding is to provide your baby with the necessary nutrients and to get him or her used to foods other than milk.
Nutrition determines the health and development of your heir. Include common sense and follow pediatricians’ recommendations.
Rules for introducing complementary foods
There is a specific pattern for introducing complementary foods:
- Any complementary food is given to the child before breastfeeding, not after feeding. During breastfeeding, too, do not interrupt.
- Any new food (porridge, vegetable puree, soup and so on) should be given to your baby from one to two teaspoons. The baby needs to get used to the new taste, the new food should get used to his gastrointestinal tract. The memory of the necessary enzymes is embedded in the genes, but it takes about two weeks for the body to «remember» and be able to produce them in the right quantity. *
- Increase the amount of new food every day, first by two, then by three teaspoons. Do not hurry, even if the child eagerly absorbs complementary food and «asks more» — he does not know how the absorption of food, and you already know), what it is fraught with.
- Bring the new food to the full amount — 150-180-200 ml — for 2 weeks.
- Another one to two weeks we continue to give the full amount of new food, only after that can be included in the diet of the following complementary food for the baby!
- It is categorically undesirable to introduce two new foods at the same time during the day and start introducing the following complementary foods until the child gets used to the previous one:
In the age of universal allergization, it is easier to make sure that there is definitely no allergy to a given product — a variety of dishes is interesting for adults, for good digestion and absorption of babies, consistency and consistency are important. — A nursing mother can always give what she wants to her baby through her milk! The older the baby, the easier it is for mom to include new foods in her diet.
Conclusions: The timing of the introduction of a single complementary food is 3-4 weeks. Based on this, you can make a plan and schedule the introduction of complementary foods by months.
*This also applies to adults. When traveling to other continents, it is not recommended to introduce new foods for more than 20% of the diet. If you do not follow this rule, digestive disorders or intestinal disorders occur
Elena Demchenko graduated from Donetsk Medical Institute named after M. Gorky with a degree in pediatrics.
Work experience in medicine: district pediatrician, neonatologist of the department of nursing extremely premature babies, joint stay of mother and child, resuscitation and intensive care of newborns.