They say that parenting is the hardest profession in the world. And it’s hard to disagree with this. After all, a whole series of problems falls on their shoulders overnight, each of which seems worse than the previous ones. The success of their solution often depends on the experience and existing knowledge in the field of medicine, dietetics, pedagogy, ethics and other sciences, and the result directly affects the future of the baby. And all this on an ongoing basis without breaks and days off. In order to somehow facilitate this hard work, we have collected the recommendations of famous practicing specialists in baby food.
What you need to know about baby food
Dr. William Sears, a pediatrician with more than 35 years of experience, has written about 30 books, the main purpose of which is to teach parents the principles of healthy eating and thereby prevent children from developing problems with blood pressure, high sugar and high cholesterol levels. According to him, you need to eat only the right carbohydrates (fruits, vegetables, cereals, legumes) and fats (vegetable oils). As well as giving preference to home-made foods and always starting the day with a good, nutritious breakfast. For children under 5 years old, the ideal breakfast is cereals with vegetables and lactic acid foods. The best ways to prepare children’s meals are boiling, stewing, baking, and steaming.
Not many people know that there is a so-called food plate. It is a complex of all foods that a person of any age should eat in a day. Half of them are fruits and vegetables. And the other half is cereals (cereals, pasta, bread) and healthy proteins (meat, fish, nuts, or legumes). In addition, you need to drink plenty of fluids and add some vegetable fats (olive oil, for example).
By adhering to these principles, you will provide your child with a healthy diet and prevent many diseases. However, when choosing foods for his diet, it is important to remember that food, first of all, should be varied and must include 5 main groups:
- dairy foods;
- eggs, meat or fish.
However, according to Dr. Tilden, there is no need to force children to eat a product they don’t like. Since “all the useful substances that are in it, they can get from other foods that they like.”
Top 20 foods for children
Oatmeal is not only the perfect breakfast for all children, but also a great source of energy. Plus, it contains fiber. And this is an excellent tool for normalizing bowel function, preventing cardiovascular diseases and preventing atherosclerosis.
Lentils. By including it in your diet, you provide the body with protein, fiber and iron, thereby preventing the risk of constipation and heart disease in children.
Eggs. Both protein and yolk contain protein, amino acids, vitamins A, D, E, calcium and choline, without which normal brain function is impossible.
Milk. This drink is necessary for the body at any age. It is a source of calcium, phosphorus, zinc, magnesium, vitamins A, D and B12. Pediatricians advise children to drink at least one glass of milk a day. This will preserve the whiteness of the teeth and the strength of the bones.
Spinach. It enriches the body with iron, magnesium, antioxidants and vitamins B6 and E. It is better to use it in a salad with vegetables and olive oil.
Raisins. It is a source of calcium and potassium. It keeps bones and teeth strong and helps fight anemia and heart disease. Plus, raisins have anti-cancer properties. Pediatricians recommend replacing sugar and unhealthy sweets with them.
Walnuts. They contain omega-3 fatty acids, B vitamins and magnesium. By including them in the diet of children, you will take care of the health of their nervous, cardiovascular and muscular systems. They can be added to baked goods or eaten raw in the morning.
Brown rice. Not only is it a source of fiber, it’s also a healthy, low-calorie food that’s packed with antioxidants. It helps to boost immunity, lower blood cholesterol levels, prevent the risk of asthma and heart disease, as well as overweight.
Yogurt. In addition to calcium and protein, it contains probiotics that improve the functioning of the gastrointestinal tract. It is best consumed with various fruits.
Broccoli. It contains vitamins, minerals, calcium, potassium and carotenoids on which eye health depends. The product is incredibly useful for a growing body, since, having a low calorie content, it still provides it with energy.
Salmon. A source of omega-3 fatty acids that improve brain function.
Blueberries. A treasure trove of vitamin C and antioxidants. You can replace it with blueberries, strawberries and cherries.
Legumes. This is a unique cocktail of fiber, protein, healthy carbohydrates, vitamins and minerals.
Beef. A source of iron, zinc and protein. It has a positive effect on all brain processes and enriches the body with energy.
Bran. This is fiber. And a great alternative to vegetables and fruits in winter and spring.
Garnet. It is rich in fiber, antioxidants, potassium, vitamins C, E, B, iron and folic acid. The product minimizes the risk of cancer, hypertension, anemia and cardiovascular disease.
Chicken. Protein source.
Banana. A hypoallergenic product that enriches the body with potassium and maintains the health of the cardiovascular system.
Apples. In addition to complex carbohydrates and iron, they contain nutrients that improve brain function and help children fall asleep easier.
Natural juices. It is a storehouse of vitamins and nutrients. However, pediatricians advise to dilute them with water.
How to improve the appetite of children
Needless to say, this is one of the biggest problems for many parents. Ways to solve it are offered by pediatricians and mothers. So,
- You need to talk about the upcoming meal in advance, giving the child the opportunity to finish all their affairs and just get ready.
- Switch to three meals a day and limit snacks.
- Offer your child only freshly prepared food, the aroma of which will scatter around the house and slowly whet his appetite.
- Whenever possible, allow your child to buy groceries, prepare meals and set the table with you. He will want to try something that he was involved in creating.
- Talk enthusiastically about food, read books about it and talk about the benefits of certain foods.
- To teach a child to healthy eating by his own example from an early age.
- Create a menu with him for the week, decorating him with pictures of colorful dishes from magazines.
- When proposing a new product, start with small portions, giving the baby a chance to get used to it.
- Feed on demand, especially for babies 1-4 years old. This will help avoid problems with excess weight in the future.
- Limit your intake of sugar, salt, spices, and carbonated drinks.
- Remain calm in any situation, even if the child is naughty and does not want to eat. Sometimes it’s better to just wait half an hour for him to have an appetite.
- Don’t forget about the presentation. Even the most capricious child will surely eat a beautiful and interestingly decorated dish.
And most importantly, to love your child as he is. Then you will certainly succeed!