How often do you feed sugary food to your baby?

Nayyara - posted on 04/26/2010 ( 14 moms have responded )

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I read at many places that sugar is not good for babies. Here in my community it is pretty much normal to offer one or two sweet things on menu per day, like puddings or adding sugar in cereals. I wonder how much sugary things you guys offer to kids and why sugar is so bad.

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Juli - posted on 04/29/2010

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For us, we are trying to encourage our little one to eat a variety of fruits and vegetables. We don't give him much sugar because we know how easy it is to prefer those types of food items to fruits, veg and whole grains. So far he's doing pretty good with fruits for sweet. We did give him real cupcakes with sugar for his birthday but I made the frosting myself with a lot less sugar than the store brands.

Now that he's getting some big teeth in, he gets a bit of ice cream from his dad if he's having a hard time with it.

I like to give him rice pudding that I make at home and that has sugar but I reduce the amount. I don't think that sugar is 'bad', just that it's important to make sure that little ones are getting complete nutrition and not just filling up on sugar. Some kids have behavior problems when they get that rush of sugar, so that may be why a lot of people stay away from it.

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Clara - posted on 05/13/2010

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The Need for Sweets

Mother Nature plays a dominant, inextricable role in the sugar attraction, and it starts from birth. "All babies are born with an innate preference for sweet," says Sigman-Grant. Breastmilk, which is the first, perfect food for children, is sweet, containing a perfect balance of fat, proteins, vitamins, minerals, and—the icing on the cake—sugar.

The first solid foods that naturally attract babies, including fruits and grains, are sweet, filled with natural sugars. The less sweet first foods, mostly vegetables such as green beans and peas, aren't as pleasing to a baby's palate. It's not a bad idea to sweeten nutritious foods that otherwise might not interest your sweet-eating baby.

The same theory applies to older children. "Yogurts, fortified cereals, fortified drinks and chocolate milk all have sugar added, as does catsup," points out Sigman-Grant. "Yet, I would not suggest to parents that these be eliminated just because of the sugar content. They each provide a variety of necessary nutrients to children. Many fortified foods, such as cereals, contain an array of nutrients, as well as sugar, which make them appealing and, therefore, children will eat them."

Tracy - posted on 05/12/2010

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Sugar is bad if you eat too much.I believe that moderation is the key with everything.Completely depriving them of any sweets will only make them want it more.My daughter eats cake or brownies or whatever dessert I make.Or sometimes the older kids will sneak her candy!

Brooke - posted on 05/11/2010

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fruits have lots of other types of sugers in them 2 so to much fruit can be harmfull, my son loves sugary food but he only gets them wen we go out or a special occasion one or two wont hurt them jus make sure they brush there teeth

Jaclyn - posted on 05/03/2010

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My boys may have a treat after dinner but this in maybe 2 to 3 times a week and they are only offered water or milk(bedtime only). If i go to the shop i found a drink that has no sugar in it so i may buy them that..maybe 3 times a week. Other than that not a lot. If i bake cakes or caramel tarts i usually use that as an after dinner treat. My 2 boys 3yrs and 17mths are good eaters they eat a good breakkie and lunch and dinner and mid snack is usually a fruit platter which they love or crackers with cheese.

Nayyara - posted on 05/01/2010

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well not only delicious, i was reading these unprocessed sugars retain the natural minerals which are missing in processed sugar. so jaggery is not only a sweetener but also a source of iron. I used to wonder why people so much worry about sugary things, perhaps in American recipes there is a lot of sugar. When I say I am giving a sugary food to my son it usually means one tea spoon in his bowel of cereal. It is probably not that 'bad'.

Juli - posted on 05/01/2010

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jaggery and other unprocessed sugars like palm sugar are so delicious! I think a lot of American recipes call for too much sugar and can usually taste just as good when the amount of sugar is cut in half. I think sugar and salt should be used as flavor enhancers for the natural goodness of foods, rather than the main element of a food item. Have been studying nutrition a bit lately, so am happy to share. Have fun with your little one!

Nayyara - posted on 04/30/2010

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thanx Juli for clearing the confusion by saying "it's important to make sure that little ones are getting complete nutrition and not just filling up on sugar".
I give him sugar in combination of some healthy food like his cereal, rice pudding or semolina pudding which he refuses to eat if it is unsweetened. And try to explore healthy options like honey or jaggery as sweetener.

Tonya - posted on 04/29/2010

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I agree with Tammy :) Sugary treats are unnecessary for a 17 month old. Our daughter loves fruits, but other than that we haven't given her anything sugary, and dont plan to until she's old enough to ask for them herself. Its been a battle to make grandparents understand, who've been dying to give her cake and ice cream since she was 6 months old, but we stand our ground. We dont really eat any sugary treats ourselves so we dont see the point in buying anything especially for our daughter to try, and really we dont want sweets as an issue. We have friends with kids the same age who cant take them to the grocery store, because they will throw tantrums if they cant have the sweets they want. Its really just empty calories and bad for their teeth, and I want my daughter to grow up knowing that there are hundreds of better and healthier options to enjoy! Up to now it hasnt been a problem and our daughter is as happy as can be with chopped up pineapple or a bowl of strawberries :) so if it aint broken, why fix it? :P

Tammy - posted on 04/28/2010

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I have never really given my 17 month old anything sugary. He eats fruits. Sugar is bad for their teeth is why I don't and it makes them hyper where they don't want to go to sleep if u give it to them late at night. I will give him sweets when he is old enough to want and ask for them but for now I don't.

Caitlin - posted on 04/28/2010

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My daughter loves her fruit.. seems to prefer water to her watered down juice. As for sweets, my daughter loves cupcakes and cake (both chocolate) but she rarely gets them, mostly for birthdays or when we are out somewhere special. Otherwise a few chocolate chips in her muffins is pretty much as sweet as it gets for her. There is no benfit t giving sugar, I try to keep it down for her as much as possible, but a treat now and then never hurts..

Jacqui - posted on 04/28/2010

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I agree that sugar is just empty calories... so we try to limit any sweets to only special occasions... I don't want DD to think sugar or sweets are "bad" foods... but that they are ok.. in moderation. We don't give her juice, she prefers the whole fruit anyway.. she drinks water during the day, and milk with meals. She does like sweets, but the most she gets at home are things such as animal crackers that aren't that sweet.

I do think we all need to make our own decisions for our kids.. maybe do a little research online to help you out.. :)

Nayyara - posted on 04/26/2010

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my son really has a sweet tooth. he loved cake when my grandma offered him a tiny bit at the age of 5-6 months. I try to put jaggery in his food instead of refined sugar.

Cathy - posted on 04/26/2010

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We don't offer much sugar. Maybe once a day. My daughter has just now discovered that she might like sugar. Prior to this last few weeks she wouldn't eat sugary stuff. She still won't drink juice or eat cake. We are thrilled she doesn't love sweets so we don't offer her that many. I think with sugar it is empty calories so there is no nutritional value to overly sugary snacks. My daughter is on the smaller side so less of a concern but we figure it best to not develop a sweet tooth now as I am sure that will come later. I mean what 5 year old doesn't like cake?

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