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The Baby Diaries: Weaning and nutrition simplified – fibre and vitamins

baby eating_food_18_09_12Weaning is a very exciting ‘next step’ in your little one’s development. They will no longer be solely reliant on milk and will be able to explore one of life’s greatest pleasures: food!

Every parent wants to give their baby the best and when you start weaning that is no exception. It can be difficult to know what a ‘good diet’ for your baby is, but don’t panic. The beginning of weaning is more about exploring flavours and texture’. When they start to eat more foods and drink less milk this is when you need to start looking at the nutrition. 

Fibre

Whilst fibre is undoubtedly a good thing, too much of it can be a problem for babies. High-fibre foods aren’t well digested by our bodies, so travel through our body without being broken down, and absorb lots of water. This can quickly fill-up small tummies without providing the calories and nutrients they need in order to grow. Examples of high-fibre foods are bran, brown rice and wholemeal pasta – these are not suitable foods for babies to eat regularly (although brown bread is fine).

Although fruit and vegetables do contain fibre this is in smaller amounts and so is fine to give them. Once they reach around five years of age they can start to have more higher fibre foods.

Vitamins and Minerals

These are some of the most important things your little one gets from their diet. They help our bodies to work as they should, and make sure we can use the energy we get from foods properly.

Vitamins and minerals are found in lots of different foods. Vitamins A, D, E and K are found in foods which contain fat, such as milk, yogurts and avocados. Vitamin C is found in most fruits but especially citrus types, as well as potatoes. B-vitamins are found in carbohydrate foods such as potatoes, rice, bread and pasta.

Calcium is probably the best known mineral and is found in all dairy foods as well as some breads and breakfast cereals. Iron is another important one – this is in red meats as well as beans/pulses and leafy green vegetables.

Different coloured foods contain different nutrients, so the best way to ensure your little one is getting as many vitamins and minerals as possible is to make sure they are ‘eating a rainbow’. Here are some colourful examples: tomatoes, strawberries,  carrots, oranges, sweet corn, melon, avocado, spinach, aubergine and blackcurrants.

Above all, just remember to relax and enjoy this very special and short time in your child’s development. It won’t be long before they are eating everything they can get their hands on and you will look back on this and smile. 


About the author

HiPP is passionate in its belief in using organic foods for babies and toddlers. You’ll find the company’s range of organic meals nourishing, and the wholesome recipes are suitable for every stage of your baby’s development and all mealtimes. For more information, advice and support, visit www.hipp.co.uk


Picture credit: Shutterstock

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