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10 foods your baby can’t eat

What your baby can’t eat and can

A baby is very precious. It is the most beautiful gift of God. And we want to give our babies the best of everything we have access to. While trying to give the best to our babies, we often get carried away and tend to do things that are not right for a baby. It is our responsibility to be hundred per cent careful what we are giving to them, especially what we are feeding them. Keeping that in mind, we have collated a list of things that your newborn baby can’t eat and what your baby can.

Edibles you can give to newborn babies or infants.

Breast milk: Today it is common knowledge that breast milk is the ultimate food for newborn babies. Breast milk has the perfect composition of vitamins, protein, fat which aptly fulfils the necessities of a delicate infant stomach. It also contains antibodies that help an infant fight various diseases caused mainly due to different bacteria and viruses. Here are some nutritional facts about a mother’s breast milk, and how it helps sustain life since birth –

 

baby can't eat

 

  • Breast milk consists of millions of live cells, including WBC, as well as stem cells, which helps boost the child’s immune system while allowing its organs to grow and develop properly.
  • It contains more than a thousand types of proteins and different kinds of amino acids. This not only helps in active muscle development but also protects and develops neurons in the brain.
  • It also has 200 plus complex sugars called oligosaccharides acting as natural probiotics, or good bacteria, looking after your baby’s gut. It also prevents any kind of infection from entering the bloodstream. 
  • It also contains hormones that help regulate your baby’s eating and sleeping habits, bonding with parents (especially mother) and other habits.

Moreover, a mother’s breast milk is also loaded with vitamins and minerals, enzymes, growth factors, fatty acids, microRNAs, antibodies and a lot more. It is no doubt a big factor behind your newborn’s healthy development.

Hence, we strongly suggest breast milk be the only food that your newborn baby intakes, at least for the first six months of his or her birth. 

Formula milk: First things first. If you are currently producing enough breast milk to sustain your child, then stay away from formula milk. Remember that an infant has a small belly, and usually a mother’s breast milk is enough. 

However, if your milk is not being sufficient to fill your baby’s stomach, you can consult a paediatrician and start feeding measured portions of formula milk. Here are a few signs to understand that your baby needs formula milk – 

  • Flattened or slack stomach
  • Poor weight gain
  • Insufficient/smelly poop
  • Dehydration
  • Constant sucking of the thumb
  • Lack of sleep
  • Constant crying

If you come across the above symptoms, consult your child’s paediatrician and start feeding formula milk two to three times a day, in small 20 ml – 30 ml portions.

Vitamin D supplements: While a mother’s milk has ample nutritional value, it may not be the best source of vitamin D for babies. Hence, it is a common practice among doctors to prescribe vitamin d syrup to babies. Giving vitamin D supplements on a daily basis while breastfeeding helps improve their bone development and also protects them against the deadly rickets disease. Also, the AAP recommends all breastfed babies be given vitamin D supplements within the first few days of his or her birth.

Prescribed nutrition supplements: These supplements are usually given to newborn babies with specific deficiencies. An iron supplement is a commonly prescribed nutrition supplement. 

10 Foods you cannot give to newborn babies or infants.

Salt and sugar: Though salt and sugar are on the list, it is hard to think of food without these two. The solution? You just need to be cautious about the amount of each you are giving to your baby. Remember too much salt is bad for the kidneys. Also, your newborn baby really doesn’t need sugar at all. 

Saturated fat: If you have a habit of tossing in bits of crisps, biscuits, chips, cakes, or candy – because he likes it – stop it right away. Saturated fat is accumulated in the blood and weakens your baby’s metabolism and degrades heart health. 

Cheese: Cheese is no doubt good for your baby’s diet if fed in measured portions as part of their meal, but only after the first six months. Cheese is a good source of calcium, vitamin, and proteins, hence good for your baby’s health. However, avoid giving mould-ripened soft cheese or ripened goat milk cheese as they carry a bad bacteria called listeria. 

Raw or rare cooked eggs/raw yolk: Feeding anything to your infant, other than the mother’s breast milk, or prescribed formula milk, is not a good idea. Not at least till he or she completes one year. Raw egg or egg yolk contains a very concentration of protein. And an infant’s stomach doesn’t produce such strong enzymes to digest the protein. Remember, the protein sourced from breast milk is adequate for the baby, and his digestion process also works accordingly.

Honey: Honey often harbours the Clostridium botulinum bacteria. This bacteria produces a toxin called botulinum which is known to cause lethargy, weakens the suckering, weakens muscles and causes constipation in babies. Hence, it is good to avoid honey at least till the first year of the baby’s birth.

Cow’s/buffalo’s milk (or any milk which has a thick density): Cow’s of buffalo’s milk contains a high content of lactose which is undoubtedly heavy on your newborn baby’s stomach. Don’t worry. You will have to keep away from cow’s milk for only a year. After your baby turns one year old, and its stomach is stronger, you can feed him or her cow’s milk. However, ensure that the milk is properly pasteurized and thinned a little by adding plain water.

Citrus fruit juice: You might think it’s a good idea to feed a baby some fruit juice. Myth – go ahead. Fact – hold on. The citrus acids will be too heavy on your baby’s stomach. This can cause indigestion, severe gas which will then lead to vomit, stomach pain and even fever. 

Seafood/shellfish/fishes: Seafood and shellfish can cause different kinds of allergies in children, especially so for newborn babies. Also, various fishes like tuna and mackerel are known to contain high levels of mercury, and should not be fed to infants, till they are more than two years old.

Soft foods like jellies or marshmallows: Let’s put it simply. First, it is not needed and second, it has high chances of getting stuck in your baby’s food pipe, leading to choking. So, it is always good to be careful.

Peanut butter: A newborn baby is very delicate and is often allergic to a lot of things. Peanut butter is recommended as a big no-no for newborns. Allergy caused due to peanut butter can lead to suffocation, swollenness of face, hands and feet, and other painful irritation. 

You can feed your baby a paste of dry fruits like walnuts, cashew, hazelnut, but only after the initial six months to one year of his or her birth.

 

If you would like to know what’s the best food plan for your baby, click here.