Why are First Foods important?
By the time your baby reaches six months, the breast milk alone can’t satisfy all the nutrient requirements of your baby.
The demand for the nutrients by the baby’s body is high in particular with Iron and Vitamin D.
The body utilizes the reserves of iron and other nutrients and they start depleting.
So introducing solids to your baby is very important in order to satisfy the nutrient requirements.
The signs that your baby is ready
Don’t be in a hurry to introduce solids and It is good to wait until the baby is around six months old.
Introducing solids before 6 months can lead to several complications and is not usually recommended as the digestive and immune systems of the baby are not sufficiently developed.
Observe the signs of readiness before starting the solids like
- Curious looks on the foods you eat
- Demanding more even after getting his daily portion of milk
- Able to hold his head steady
What to consider before introducing baby first foods
While choosing foods for the baby we need to consider certain things like
- The first foods that you feed must be easy to digest.
- Avoid foods that are likely to provoke an allergic reaction.
- Avoid acidic foods.
- Try to give fresh and healthy foods for your baby.
The very first foods must be made with constituents that should make the baby adapt to new flavors and textures.
So it is better, to begin with the foods that have mild tastes like potato.
Make sure that the consistency is runny and without any lumps.
13 Best First Foods
A very easy to digest and one of the most common first foods for babies is Banana.
Bananas are a rich source of carbohydrates and sugars that play a vital role in the healthy functioning of baby’s body.
They are packed with potassium, a nutrient that helps in baby’s muscle functioning and development, heart health and also aid to control the body’s water balance.
Bananas are also a great source of Vitamin C, Vitamin B6, and magnesium.
It is a best portable baby food and It can be the mom’s best foods for the baby in ease of doing the puree.
Try to select a fully ripe banana (Identify by brown spots) and mash it to make the puree.
One can add breast milk or water to get the required consistency.
The natural sweetness of the carrots makes them appealing to babies.
Carrots are a rich source of beta-carotene and other vital nutrients required for the baby’s growth and development. which makes it one of the excellent first foods.
To prepare puree, Steam or boil the carrots and mash it up by adding water.
Potato is a great source of carbohydrates and packed with a considerable amount of vitamins, minerals, and proteins. It is one of the most popular and widely consumed vegetables around the world
They are economical and available across all the seasons.
Starting potatoes as a solid food for your baby can be a delicious treat.
It tastes little sweet and its texture gives your baby a good sensation on the tongue.
Potatoes also benefit your baby by improving immunity, bone health, and heart health.
They are also a good source of Choline, a water-soluble nutrient that influences a wide range of body functions such as maintaining cell structure, brain development, and muscle functioning.
Apples are naturally sweet and it’s easy to make a smooth puree with it by just boiling and mashing it up.
They are nutritious and a great choice as baby’s first foods as they are unlikely to provoke an allergic reaction.
Apples contain pectin that helps to improve the baby’s digestive health.
Make sure to peel off before making an apple puree as giving with peel may sometimes lead to tummy upsets for babies under 10 months.
Avocado is one of the best first foods for the growing babies.
They are a rich source of essential fats and fiber.
Avacado’s are a great nutrient source for babies as they contain lots of vitamins C, B6 and minerals like Potassium and Magnesium.
Buy a ripe avocado, scoop out the flesh and mash it until smooth. Thin it by adding breastmilk or water to make it into a runny puree.
Papaya is a delicious tropical fruit that tastes sweet when ripen.
A good ripen papaya is ideal for preparing a puree.
This Fleshy fruit is easy to serve and doesn’t need to cook or boil, just a few scoops of its flesh is enough to make a puree.
Make sure to peel off and remove the seeds before preparing the puree.
Papaya contains an enzyme called papain, which helps to break down complex food particles. The Soluble fiber present in papaya can aid Baby’s bowel function.
It contains vitamin C, which is known to strengthen the immune system and help your baby to fight against infections.
Papayas are also a great source of Folate and Vitamin A.
Make sure that you never feed your baby with an unripened papaya because this can cause discomfort and can upset your baby’s tummy.
Introducing sweet potatoes to your baby is a great choice.
The delicious taste of sweet potatoes makes it appealing to your baby. When it comes to nutrition value, they have great to offer for your baby.
Along with their great Carbohydrate and fiber content, they are a good source of Vitamin A, B6, and vitamin C and the Orange variety of Sweet potatoes are an excellent source of beta-carotene.
Steam or boil the sweet potatoes, until tender. Peel-off and mash them to prepare the puree.
Pears are a nutrient dense food that contains vitamins like A, C, and some B vitamins.
To make puree, Ripe pears are ideal and it is good to remove peel and then steam or boil until tender.
Pears are easy to digest and also contains pectin like apples.
Butternut squash or Butternut pumpkin is also a popular choice as a first food for your baby and they taste nutty and sweet.
This Winter variety squash has impressive Vitamin A and Vitamin C content, which are responsible for boosting immunity. Squashes also have a good amount of Potassium and Magnesium, the minerals required for building stronger bones.
Though butternut squash is a healthy option as a first food, they may cause allergic reactions sometimes. So please be cautious.
Introduction of Baby rice is another step forward in your baby’s journey towards solid foods.
Baby rice cereal is easy to digest and feels gentle in the stomach.
It tastes milky and little sweet.
Baby rice is a good source of carbohydrates. Your baby needs a good amount of carbohydrates for the constant supply of energy. Lack of carbohydrates in the diet can result in tiredness or fatigue.
Baby rice is also a rich source of Vitamin B1.
There are some safety concerns regarding baby rice due to the quality issues. However, Kindly look into the brand you wish to opt for.
When it comes to solid foods you can’t ignore millets. This ancient food is consumed by humans for thousands of years.
Millets come in different varieties each variety has their own uniqueness in nutrient value.
Before considering these superfoods for your baby, It is advisable to consult your doctor.
Millets are packed with several minerals like calcium, magnesium, phosphorous and manganese that play an important role in the metabolism of the body.
Not only they were a good source of minerals, but also with carbohydrates and vitamins.
Millets can be introduced to your baby from 6 to 8 months.
The sweet taste and the nutritive value of the peas make them one of the best greens to introduce to your baby.
The taste and the texture of the peas puree gives a new sensation to the baby who until used to eat foods of creamy texture and blander tastes.
Peas are a great source of Vitamin A, Vitamin C, B6, B2 and Vitamin K along with minerals like manganese and Phosphorus.
They are also a rich source of copper, Iron, and Zinc.
However, peas need to be introduced only when the baby got habituated to simple purees like potato, banana or baby rice. Babys should be more than 8 months old to introduce peas.
To prepare the puree, steam or boil the peas until tender. Make sure to remove any remaining pea skins by pushing peas through a mesh strainer.
Parsnips have a unique sweet and nutty flavor and are packed with nutrients.
Rich in Vitamin C, and minerals like potassium, iron, and zinc. Parsnips are also a good source of calcium which will be helpful for baby development.
They are easy to digest and one can prepare parsnip puree just like that of carrots.