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My baby turned 100 days today – Here’s what I learned about her baby nutritional needs

Baby nutritional needs

Every parent knows that children should be fed a balanced diet. It is important that we provide our kids with a balanced diet that includes lean whole grains, fruits, proteins, and vegetables. Apart from that, you can also add a small amount of healthy fats. A balanced diet offers virtually all the nutrients that your kids need. One of the best things you can do for your baby is to start with healthy, nutritious food. At every age and stage, you can’t go wrong when you support your child learn to understand a healthy diet.

Importance of breastfeeding and nutrition 

Baby nutritional needs

For a newborn, breast milk is the best. During your baby’s first 3 months, breast milk or formula provides all the necessary nutrients.  It contains essential vitamins and minerals to meet the baby’s energy needs. Infant formulas are convenient for infants whose mothers are not able to or choose not to breastfeed. Babies as young as 3 months must drink breast milk or infant formula every few hours, or on-demand, to help meet nutritional necessities. Cow’s milk or other dairy products shouldn’t be fed until at least one year old. Your baby’s kidneys cannot handle high levels of protein and minerals until this age.  Babies digest formula is more slowly than breast milk, so if you bottle-feed your baby, he or she may drink less than breast-fed babies. There are many foods that your baby cant eat, click here to know more.

Before making any decision that will affect the baby, several factors should be considered. Only in the absence of mother or mother’s milk, the baby should be given outside nutrition supplements. This can be done if the baby is allergic to milk, and substitutes should be chosen very carefully. Most of the infant formulas today are prepared from cow’s milk. They are fortified to make them as close to breast milk as possible and provide babies with all the nutrients they need for growth and health.  Largely cow’s milk formulas comprise carbohydrates, in the form of the milk sugar “lactose”, iron, protein, calcium, zinc, and additional minerals and vitamins (including A, C, D, E, and B).

There is no so-called diet for a 3-month-old infant. How much should be fed and taken care of depends on the baby’s weight.  Most importantly, you should make sure that your baby is properly fed. When your baby appears alert and active, you can understand that her weight is steadily increasing and takes the feed 6 – 8 times a day. Also, make sure she wets and soils the diaper regularly. Generally, by the age of 3 months, babies should be supplemented with vitamin D in addition to breastfeeding. The current recommended minimum vitamin D intake for infants is 400 IU per day, soon after birth. This can be performed with the help of the morning sun. You need to remember that babies should only receive the morning sun rays as the heat is very light and has maximum benefits. 

Babies aged 0-3 months need 2 mg of zinc a day and breastfeeding babies should be supplemented with iron.  Two months later, with the consent of the doctor, you can start to feed him juice, water, and other liquid foods as additional nutritional supplements. When feeding a baby with a bottle, it becomes very difficult to decide beforehand how much the infant will consume. He usually consumes 4 or 5 ounces of milk at the beginning of the third month and may add one ounce to each feed before the end of the third month. Some of the nutrients that babies need to grow and stay healthy include Calcium, Fat, Folate, Iron, Zinc, Protein, and carbohydrates. Your baby also needs vitamins A, B1, B2, B3, B6, B12, C, D, E, and K.

Choosing Foods for your kids

Mother and baby daughter having fun Free Photo

Nourishing your baby solid food too early can direct to overfeeding and being overweight. Solid foods usually do not help babies fall asleep all night. You will also find that your baby sleeps longer at night.  In the first month, your baby sleeps most frequently and you need to feed them regularly. As the child grows, the feeding process will change and other foods will be added. You will only find that the child will gradually increase the quantity and the number of times will get reduced. You will observe changes every week, which will help you make decisions and feed your baby accordingly.  In the second month, the baby can consume about 4 or 5 ounces per feeding. 

It is easy to overfeed a newborn with a bottle because it is effortless to drink from a bottle than from a breast. Make sure that the hole on the nipple of the baby bottle is the correct size. The liquid must flow slowly from the hole and not pour out. In addition, if your baby shows signs of being full resist the urge to run out of the bottle. Do not prop the baby bottle as it can cause choking and increases the possibility of getting ear infections and tooth decay. Breastfeeding moms always wonder how they realize their baby is getting enough. What goes in must come out, so counting wet diapers is a promising method to understand that your baby is getting plenty. In the first few days after birth, your baby should have at least 5 wet diapers per day. If you notice your baby having fewer wet diapers, you should immediately seek help from your baby’s doctor or lactation consultant.

Proper infant nutrition is essential for the continued health of children from birth to adulthood. Proper nutrition during the first three years of life is particularly crucial as these aspects reduces the risk of lifelong chronic diseases, and promotes normal physical and mental development. On the other hand, incorrect feeding techniques contribute up to a third of all issues of child malnutrition. This is compounded by the proliferation of refined foods like infant formula and commodities rich in salt, free sugars, and trans fats. This results in a rise in poor diets, obesity, and a striking reduction in the number of mothers breastfeeding their infants. Breastfeeding is essential to the development of children, including improving IQ, academic performance, and higher income in adulthood.