If you are a new mom, you will have a lot of thinking about the right diet plan for your little family member. Here, your doctor might have insisted the importance of breastmilk feeding for the initial few months. So, you should follow the same for the healthy growth of your baby. Further, after some months, you can give other external foods as per your baby’s needs and as per the recommendation of your pediatrician.
What to know about infant nutrition?
Infant nutrition means that making sure that your baby gets enough nutrients in the first year of his/her birth. As you know, minerals, vitamins, fat, protein and calories are the nutrients your baby needs. Feeding your baby with the right nutrition will help him stay protected against diseases. It will also improve his health when he grows older. Remember that each baby is different. Even, if you are already a mom and this is your second baby, the requirement of this baby is different from his sibling. It is better to know about the best baby food chart. The right food chart for your baby will ensure that he will get all the essential nutrients.
Get regular health check-ups:
One thing you should remember is that your baby needs regular check-ups. Only during the check-up, the pediatrician can tell whether the growth of your baby is healthy. In case, you find that your baby is not gaining the weight, it is better to talk to the dietician or pediatrician. They will help you if you have issues with nursing your baby. If the infant is vomiting or has diarrhea or if he refuses to take breastmilk for a day, take him to the pediatrician. The reason for such issues can be digestive problems.
What type of care does your baby need?
A good diet plan for an infant should have 8-15% protein, 30-15% carbohydrate, and 35-55% fat content. Further, it should have the right calories that a baby needs. Experts recommend that you should try giving one new food to the infant only once in every 2-3 days. It will ensure easy digestion for the baby. When you try new foods that are chewy and dry like cheese, dried beans, and peanut butter, you should have a careful watch on your baby to ensure that he does not choke.
When to feed?
Infant formula and breast milk:
Infant formula or breast milk is the essential nourishment that your baby needs until 4-6 months. It is better to keep away from cow’s milk and other dairy products at least for one year of age. The reason is that your baby’s kidneys cannot handle foods with high mineral and protein content until this age.
Cereals and other starchy foods:
The only grain you can feed before the six months of your baby is rice. You can opt for other alternatives like oats, barley, and wheat only after six months of age.
Remember not to give any fruits until three months. From the 4th to the 6th month, you can provide 1/4th to ½ a cup of pureed fruits. From the 7th month, you can feed half to a bowl of pureed, canned or soft fresh fruits like bananas.
Do not give any juices until four months. From the 5th month to the 8th month, you can feed 1/4th to half a cup of fresh fruit juice. From 9th to the 12th month, you can increase the quantity to half a cup.
Infants get the fluid their body needs from the breastmilk, juices, and baby formulas. But, in hot climates, they need half to a cup of water a day to meet the losses. From 0-5 months no water is required other than during warm weather or when the baby has diarrhea. From the sixth month, you can give water as per the baby’s need.