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Cultivating good and healthy eating habits are introduced during a baby’s first year itself. So, you have to teach your child to recognize and enjoy healthy foods instead of French fries and other fast food. If you miss doing it, you will end up with a child who likes only “kids’ food” and is fussy about eating and enjoying vegetables. So teach your child early in his life to eat healthy.
Breastfeed for the First Six Months
Feed your baby breastmilk exclusively for the first six months which is enough to provide him with the right amount of nutrients. It contains antibodies that protect your baby from illnessandalso protects your baby from diarrhea or constipation. During this time, give him a supplement of Vitamin D, available as drops.
Time His Eating Habits Right
Introduce him to solid food around the time he is 6 months old continuing to breastfeed him till he is two years old.The best time when your baby is most likely to enjoy his solid food is when he is feeling bright eyed in the morning or right after taking a nap.
Ensure that he is hungry, not allowing him to starve, turn off the TV, put away your phone and make sure the other kids are not running around wildly. You can start his solids with vegetables; bananas and avocados also tend to make good first feed foods. Don’t worry if he takes only a few bites initially, which is natural.
Feed Your Baby Variety
Once your baby has got used to eating, start introducing new healthy foods regularly. Feeding your baby on a single food will turn him into a picky eater later. Work your way through a variety of foods – Papaya, banana and a lot more, and your baby will get the taste of various flavors. If your baby refuses a particular food, try it again.It will take in sometime for the baby to adjust to the new flavors that he is being introduced to. So don’t throw in the towel after only a few attempts.
When introducing your baby to foods which are known food allergens, wait for a day or two before you introduce a new one. This will help you to identify a food if it causes reaction in your baby.
Healthy Starting Foods for Your Baby
Start your baby on foods that contain iron which is essential for the baby’s development. Well-cooked legumes like lentils and beans, cooked egg yolk, poultry and meat are all sources of iron. Iron-fortified infant cereals are also good first food for your baby.
Cut the Fruit Juice
However, tempted you might be, skip fruit juice. After all, it is just sugar water which spikes the blood sugar making your child vulnerable to obesity. It also kills your child’s appetite. Instead, feed your child fresh juice diluted with a little water after he is 10 months old. Fresh fruit juice contains enzymes and nutrition and makes a healthy drink for your child.
Teaching your child to eat in a healthy way will make him feel good, achieve a healthy weight and armor him with a lot of energy later on. If you start right, you can help your baby develop healthy eating habits which will last for his lifetime. Click here to learn more about healthy food for your children.
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