Sign In | Create an Account | Welcome, . My Account | Logout | Contact Us | Home RSS

Feeding during the first year of life

January 19, 2015
Jasmin Foster , MOV Parent

What you feed your infant its first year of life is very important. The best recommendation is breastfeeding which can yield great benefits for both you and your baby. The number one benefit is the protection of your newborn's immune system. According to the Office on Women's Health, components in breast milk help protect from diseases and illness later in life like asthma, childhood obesity, type 2 diabetes and more. Colostrum, the first milk expressed post pregnancy, is a yellowish and thick liquid full of nutrients and antibodies for babies to consume.

Another benefit of breastfeeding is its low cost. The cost of formulas and cow's milk can add up over time as the amount to feed your baby increases. With breastfeeding no additional costs are needed but optional items such as a pump to express milk when not feeding the infant. In return, a breast pump saves time and allows for milk to last longer.

One year timeline for infants:

According to the American Academy of Pediatrics babies should be breastfed for at least 6 months.

At about 4 to 6 months, mashed solid foods can be introduced as a supplement but should not replace milk. As expected it takes time for infants to transition so 1 to 2 teaspoons should be given once a day until adjusted. An example of food infants can tolerate at this time is single grain cereal like rice cereal.

From 6 to 8 months, pureed and mashed fruits and vegetables can be introduced one by one. Cups of water can be introduced and occasionally 4 to 6 oz of 100 percent juice in a sippy cup.

By 7 to 10 months infants may be able to start feeding themselves with easily manageable foods like dry cereal.

At 8 to 12 months infants may be ready for soft or cooked table foods.

Timelines are created to ensure your child is properly developed to handle transitioning from milk to solid foods. Every child is different and timelines should be individualized to fit the infant's comfort level and development. In some cases, certain health problems will mean different guidelines for feeding or resulting to formula with cow's milk. Consult with your local pediatrician for more information.

When transitioning to solids, buying processed baby food is not the only option. These foods can often contain majority water with additives and added sugar. At home you can create nutritious meals for your child while saving money. Consider transforming fresh fruits, grains, and vegetables fixed for the entire family to a suitable form for your infant. Investing in an expensive blender will create the perfect meal. Here is a fun spin on a classic recipe for baby food:

Banana Mango Puree


1 Banana

1 Mango

Peel banana and cut mango into cubes. Blend banana and mango in processor until desired consistency. Enjoy.

Jasmin Foster is an Ohio State University Dietetic Intern at Children's Hunger Alliance.



I am looking for:
News, Blogs & Events Web