Helpful Info on Feeding Your Little One

Lena - posted on 02/15/2010 ( 1 mom has responded )




Just wanted to post some helpful links for all the mothers :)

Baby Carrots are "real"

Myth: Baby Carrots are true miniature carrots.

Truth: Those cute, convenient little baby carrots that are found in the grocers are actually imposters. "Baby Carrots" are not a varietal of the carrot and are not grown due to Mother Nature's influence.

"Baby" carrots are the product of modern technology. They are actually specially formed by a machine that cuts them out from full sized older carrots. Some "growers" add green food coloring at the "stem" for further effect Read more about Carrots for Baby

Do Not Feed Your Baby "Fatty" Foods

Myth: You should never feed your baby "fatty" foods like avocado or whole milk dairy products.

Truth: Babies NEED fat in their diets. Formula and breast milk contain a high amount of fats - "good" fats that is. Fat and fatty acids are essential for brain development. Avocado is one food that oftentimes parents are told not to feed their infants due to the fat content. While avocados may be high in fats, they are high in "good" fats. Avocados contain monounsaturated fats which are said to lower "bad" cholesterol and also aid in maintaining a healthy heart. Also high in fiber, avocados are great aids in reducing the risks of cancer and heart attack. Avocado makes an excellent first food for baby. Read more about Avocados on our avocado page.

Diary products should be of the full fat version until baby is 2 years old. DO NOT GIVE baby 2%, 1% or low fat dairy products until after 2 years old unless you are otherwise instructed by your baby's doctor. Some doctors even recommend waiting to give lower fat dairy products until after the baby has turned 3 years old. Yogurt is a great way for baby to get the fat that is so highly needed during baby’s first year.

Commercial Baby Food Is More "Safe" For Baby

Myth: Commercial Baby Food "Safer" For Baby to eat due to sterility and monitoring.

Truth: Guidelines for facilities that process foods (including baby foods) are strict it's true. However, the (U.S.) Food and Drug Administration responsible for regulating and ensuring safe food, has a threshold level of insect parts, mold and rodent parts that must be reached prior to a food being considered "unsafe" to sell to the public. The US-FDA considers it far better to allow certain levels of these unsavory items in foods than to treat those foods with chemicals. Consider this - It's been estimated by an Ohio University fact sheet that we actually eat 1 to 2 pounds of insects each year, unintentionally. You may view a list of foods and their "allowable defect levels" at US-FDA Defect Action Level Handbook

And regarding pesticide levels, "Baby-food carrots were recalled [by the FDA] because they absorbed lead while growing in an apple orchard, where a lead-based fruit pesticide had years earlier seeped into the soil." LAURAN NEERGAARD, AP Medical Writer article entitled From grocery store to test tube _ monitoring the chemicals we eat - 2003

Commercial Baby Food is no safer than homemade baby food; remember the issues surrounding the plastic used to seal the jars of baby food? All things considered, it is probably correct to assert that both forms of baby food are equal on the "safety" front with homemade baby food having the added advantage of your careful cleansing and preparation.

Blueberries are highly allergenic like strawberries are

Myth: Blueberries are highly allergenic like strawberries are - don't feed them to baby until after 1 year old.

Truth: Blueberries are not really a common allergen - they are not in the "berry" family. Blueberries are not related to strawberries, raspberries and the like. Those "true" berries may be mild to highly allergenic. In the book, Managing Allergy and Intolerance, blueberries are recommended between 6-9 months old. There are also several other pediatric allergy books that say that blueberries are ok from 6-9 months old as well. Read more at our Blueberry Info & Recipes

Breast fed babies need iron fortified commercial baby food

Myth: A breast fed baby is at risk of iron deficient anemia and should only eat iron fortified commercial baby foods.

Truth: Other than commercial baby cereal, jarred baby food is not fortified with iron. For a healthy full-term infant, breast milk will meet all of your baby's nutritional needs for at least the first six months of life. Vitamin and mineral supplements should not be required or needed for a healthy, full-term breast fed baby during the first year. Many studies have pointed out the fact that it is possible that supplements, water, juice, and even solid foods are seldom benefit a healthy breast fed baby; indeed some studies indicate that during the first six months of life, some of these things may be harmful. Visit our Iron Information page to learn more about Iron and your baby.

"Orange" Foods Are Dangerous Because of Too Much Vitamin A

Myth: An abundance of "Orange" foods is dangerous and will cause Vitamin A overdose.

Truth: Parents who feed their infants a lot of orange fruits and vegetables may one day notice that their infant's palms, soles of the feet and even face have taken on an orange hue. Don't be too alarmed and don't worry that your baby may at risk of Vitamin A overdose. Unless your baby is sickly, a more yellow than orange color and the whites of baby's eyes are also yellow tinged, your baby probably has carotenemia and not jaundice.

Vitamin A may be dangerous and even lethal when too much of it is taken in the form of a vitamin supplement. Natural Vitamin A, such as that which beta-carotene converts to, is harmless and is indeed very beneficial for promoting good vision and eye development as well as helping sustain healthy growth and development.

Orange foods, such as sweet potatoes, winter squash, pumpkin and carrots, contain high levels of beta-carotene. Beta-carotene is a carotenoid. "Carotenoids are dark colored dyes found in plant foods that can turn into a form of vitamin A. One of the carotenoids is beta-carotene. Beta-carotene is an antioxidant." NIH, Medline Plus The more deep the color of the orange veggie or fruit, the higher the amount of beta-carotene. Dark green vegetables are also high in beta-carotene.

Did you know that a mother's breast milk may also become a yellow or orange color? Mother's milk is cull of carotene and if MOm's diet is high in beta-carotene rich foods, her milk may take on a color change. Carotenemia, the Breast fed Toddler & Mother's Milk

As always, we recommend you contact your pediatrician with any medical concerns your baby may be experiencing; generalities may not apply to your baby's particular situation.

Fruits First = Veggies Never

Myth: Giving your baby a fruit as a "first" solid will cause baby to reject and dislike veggies.

Truth: The order of food introduction really doesn't matter. Some say the veggies first so a "sweet tooth" doesn't develop for fruits. If your baby is breast fed, she is already receiving the sweetest food there is. Others say fruits first so that baby will enjoy her first foods and not be as likely to reject solids. Still others say yellow first then green while some say green before yellow so baby doesn't reject the yellow.......

There is no hard scientific evidence to prove any of the above; you find many babies LOVE their green veggies and HATE their fruits and v.v. We personally introduced foods in an order something like sweet potato then bananas then peaches then another veggie then another fruit and some homemade cereal along the way too.

"Baby Juice" is best.

Myth: My baby should drink the "baby" juice made by "the" baby food companies because the juice is special.

Truth: "Baby juice" is not special nor is it magical. You would do better by purchasing "adult" 100% natural juice. Ensure that the juice (or even applesauce.) you purchase has no ingredients other than apples (or another fruit) and water. A few juices will contain Ascorbic Acid - this is fine as Ascorbic Acid is Vitamin C. You want to stay away from any type of juice or other food that contains high fructose corn syrup. Many fruit juices will contain this yucky ingredients so please read the labels. Read more about giving baby juice

(Many parents do not wish to offer their infants any type of fruit juice at all and we do not advocate fruit juice as a constant beverage. Juices should be used very sparingly, if at all. We recommend always diluting any juice that is offered. Juices are good for helping to alleviate constipation. Read more at The Use and Misuse of Fruit Juice as published by the American Academy of Pediatrics)

Baby can't chew without teeth.

Myth: My baby has no teeth - he can't eat Baby Finger Foods yet.

Truth: Babies do not chew with their teeth, they mash with their gums. Molars are the teeth that we use to chew our foods with. An infant will not begin to cut molars until around 10-16 months or older. The last set of molars to come in typically occurs around age 2 years old. You may offer Baby Finger Foods as long as they are easily mashable between the gums. Try pinching the food you wish to offer between your thumb and forefinger or try to mash and dissolve the food in your mouth without chewing or biting down; swirl the food around your mouth.

Most children have all 20 baby teeth by the age of two-and-a-half to three years. The permanent teeth continue to develop within the jaw. Baby teeth erupt in pairs on the right and left of the mouth, alternating between the lower and upper jaws, and proceeding from front to back.

The 20 primary teeth usually erupt in the following order:

four front teeth or central incisors, first in the lower jaw and then in the upper jaw

four lateral incisors, on each side of the front teeth, uppers before lowers

four first molars, uppers first

four canines or cuspids, between the lateral incisors and the first molars, usually uppers before lowers

Read more at Baby Teeth by Dr. Greene

Baby Hates Solid Food

Myth: I tried to feed my baby (xyz) food once and he hates it.

Truth: Experts say that it takes an infant between 15-21 instances of trying out a (new) food before a true like or dislike is established. If you are just beginning to introduce solid foods, you really will not be able to determine if your baby has a true dislike for a food until much later. In the initial stages of solid food introduction, you will be met with funny faces as your baby tries to understand the textures and taste of the new foods. These funny faces, and even a refusal to open ones mouth for a feeding, do not necessarily indicate a dislike for a food. Remember, baby has been accustomed to nothing but breast and/or bottle for 6 months; putting a new object (spoon) full of a new substance (sweet potato) into his mouth is probably quite disconcerting. Making your own baby food and freezing purées allows you to go back and try a "rejected" food over again with minimal waste and economic cost.

Freezing Banana & Avocado

Myth: You can't freeze Bananas and/or Avocados

Truth: We are unsure where this myth originated however we suspect it may be perpetuated by parents who have had their banana and/or avocado turn brown when frozen. There is no health/nutritional reason for not freezing bananas and/or avocados.

True, they may turn brown however this browning is natural and unless you began with brown and rotting fruit, the browning is not indicative of rot. Browning is the natural process that occurs as many fruits oxidize and ripen.


Sheree - posted on 02/15/2010




Lena, Great post!!!! I think you need to post it on all the circle of mum's forums. I have been stressing most of this in most posts/replies when people are asking what to feed their children. People need to be aware of these things, and not scared to let their children eat healthy food that doesnt come from a jar.

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