Motherhood and its challenges
The day a baby is born, is the day when a mother needs to brace herself for the healthy start of a new life. I am of the opinion that giving birth is easy, the actual work starts when the baby is out and because, trust me you’ll be having a tough time ahead. The most common problem of every mother is to feed her baby and especially, ensuring that the baby is eating enough and getting the right nutrition. As advised by doctors and experts, a newborn should be exclusively breastfed for first 6-months. After 6 months of age, it becomes increasingly difficult to breastfeed infants and meet their nutrient needs from the mother’s milk alone. Most infants are developmentally ready for other foods at about 6 months. Hence, it becomes very important to introduce complementary foods to babies to meet their energy and nutrient requirements.
Here are the top five things that you should take care while starting solids for your munchkin:
1. While introducing solids to your baby, start slowly and whatever you plan to give to your baby, prepare in a small amount; don’t worry if your baby doesn’t finish the food served to her. It’s fine. Remember, it’s a new experience for him/her and he/she is adjusting to it and learning to eat. Also, make sure the complementary foods that you offer to your baby should give enough energy, protein, and micronutrients to cover his/her energy and nutrient gaps so that together with breast milk, they meet all his/her needs.
2. Invest in a colorful cutlery set to make the food look exciting: Colorful feeding essentials definitely make feeding time more exciting for the little ones. They like colorful things. I purchased a BPA Free Green Bamboo Cutlery Set from LuvLap for my daughter and she used to love eating her food in that only. Though we introduced solids to her in a silver cutlery set gifted by her grandparents. (It’s a Hindu tradition to make the infant eat the first food item called an Annaprashan ceremony) using a silver spoon and bowl.)
3. Give a variety of food items to your little one: If you give different food items to the infant from the beginning, only then he/she will eat everything in the future when they are big. As a parent, you have to help the baby develop his taste. When my daughter became about 8-9 months old, I started giving her boiled veggies and dal-rice. I was clear that I won’t give her food that’s minus red chilly so I started adding a pinch of it in her food and she did love it. My mum through her experience told me to introduce some spices to her from the beginning only so that she could develop her taste and eat things that we all eat. And it worked! Now she eats whatever we cook and eat. I never faced any problem while traveling also. Now that she is a 2-year-old toddler and has developed a liking for things. The food items that she loves are – poha, curd, parantha, egg bhurji, dal-rice, ice-cream, fruits (apple, mango, kiwi, and watermelon), pistachio, sooji ki kheer, rice kheer, milk porridge, vermicelli (spicy), paneer and more. She rarely eats khichdi. And on top of everything, she likes eating on her own.
4. Invest in a ‘High Chair’: When my daughter started sitting at around 6 months, one of my friends suggested me to buy ‘LuvLap High Chair’. She is older to me and has the experience of raising two children. I won’t be wrong if I say she is ‘Pro LuvLap’. She loves this brand so much and so that 90% of the kid-related things in her home are from LuvLap only. She loves the brand for the quality and variety that this brand offers. So going by her experience, I purchased a ‘Comfy Baby High Chair’ and that was the best decision ever. Earlier I wasn’t sure to invest in it but later I realized that this is something we all should invest in. Read all the advantages of baby high chairs here: https://babygearspro.com/advantages-of-high-baby-chairs/
5. Know the choking hazards. Don’t give your baby foods that might make him/her choke. Food items that might choke your baby: raw vegetables, nuts & seeds, hard & crunchy foods like popcorn, nut butter & sticky foods. Also, avoid giving large chunks and in the first year, don’t give raw honey and cow milk to the little ones as their digestive system is still developing.
These are some simple ways to introduce solids to your little softballs, which I personally followed. I hope you find them useful too. Happy weaning!