A couple of weeks ago, I along with a few bloggers were invited to attend an incredibly interesting and informative seminar organised by MAI (Mothers against Influenza) to raise awareness on Influenza.
Albeit, I’m from a medical background, I realised that my personal awareness on this topic was lacking. Not that I didn’t know about it but honestly, I wasn’t aware how serious it is. I’m pretty sure, a lot of moms out there are not aware of the gravity of this disease too.
But yes, I remember diligently taking this vaccine during my pregnancy and in fact, recently, less than a month ago, my 12 months old girl got vaccinated too. It’s highly recommended to vaccinate kids under 2 years of age against it since they’re at a risk of getting flu.
Doctors on the panel- Dr Uday Chopra (MD, DCH- Pediatrics) and Dr Mukesh Gupta (MD, ObGyn) interacted with us and shared some valuable information on this issue. We also had Genelia Deshmukh as the guest of honour who shared her personal experience and insights on vaccination and the importance of seeing and talking to your paediatrician regularly.
Coming back to Influenza, here’s some important information for you all, so that all of you moms are also well informed beforehand.
What is Influenza and how is it different from common cold?
Flu is a highly contagious disease which commonly spreads through coughing, sneezing, touching objects that are infected with virus etc. Did you know, it affects more than 10 million people per year in India itself? The most common organs that are affected by it are- the respiratory tract including nose, lungs and throat, which leaves the person with following symptoms:
Click here to reach the website of MAI (Mothers against Influenza) which is a credible source to get more information on Influenza.
Types of Influenza Viruses:
There are 3 types of influenza viruses: A, B and C. Type A and B cause seasonal epidemics almost every year while type C causes mild respiratory diseases.
Who are the people at high risk of developing Influenza?
- Children under 5 years of age
Younger kids are more prone to being infected with the virus easily.
It’s different from common cold and is generally more severe. Fever and chills are more common in Flu unlike cold.
Children having asthma, brain disorders, diabetes etc are at an increased risk of developing serious complications
- Pregnant women
Our body goes through tremendous hormonal and physical changes during pregnancy which often affects our immune system, making us more prone to falling sick.
Pregnancy can double the complications arising out of Influenza
It not only affects the mother, but also the health of unborn baby, it’s maturity and delivery too.
What are the preventative measures we moms can take?
-Get your baby who’s over 6 months, vaccinated before the onset of an epidemic. The best time to do it is before the reopening of school after summer vacation.
-Avoid stepping out with your baby who isn’t vaccinated during an epidemic.
-Not just the baby, take a samuhik approach- get the entire family vaccinated so that our shield against the disease is strong enough.
Important do’s and don’ts:
If you have flu like symptoms, get yourself checked immediately and avoid contact with people, especially kids. Keep a distance of more than 6 ft from them.
-Cover your mouth when you cough or sneeze
-Wash your hands regularly throughout the day
-Monitor your illness and see your doctor every 24hrs
-Take proper medications, drink plenty of water and eat nutritious healthy meals every 2-3 hours.
See your doctor immediately if you’re showing any of these signs along with other flu symptoms:
Fall in blood pressure
Blood spots in cough
Not feeding well
High and persistent fever
Difficulty in breathing
Influenza vaccines are prepared to protect individuals from infections of flu viruses. Based on the viruses present in the environment, these vaccines are formulated twice a year. World Health Organisation recommends yearly vaccination against influenza for all people, especially those at a high risk of this disease.
Doctor Mukesh Gupta emphasised on getting the vaccination during pregnancy. “Go take a flu vaccine, even before you plan pregnancy. Only a healthy body can bring a healthy baby, preconception vaccine is important.” To which Genelia Deshmukh agreed and added, “All mothers must go meet your paediatricians, gynaecologist and get all questions answered about flu and staying protected with vaccination.”
Dr Uday Pai gave a very valuable piece of advice. He said, “Vaccines may take 4 to 6 weeks to build complete immunity in your body, so you must take it before any epidemic like swine flu breaks out.”
This was my key takeaways from the seminar. Although my daughter is vaccinated but me and my husband never thought of getting ourselves vaccinated too. Hope this post is equally useful to all of you as me.
Note: Doctors who vaccinate can be found in every locality with a simple search by pin-code. If you’re looking for a doctor, click here to find one in your vicinity.
Disclaimer: I attended a discussion on influenza awareness facilitated by Abbott IndiaLimited. Any opinion expressed in this blog is my personal opinion and not the opinion ofAbbott India Limited. Abbott India Limited does not assume any liability for the content of the blog. The blog post is not meant to be a replacement for a doctor consultation, nor is it a medical recommendation or prescription of treatment for babies having Influenza. Any reader of this blog or their family members suffering from Influenza should specifically consult his/her doctor for the same and follow the suggested course of treatment.”
Often we eat junk and serve junk to our kids because we don’t have the time to prepare something fresh everyday. In fact, that’s the reason most of us gain weight too, because we keep loading ourselves with junk all the time.
Here are two simple recipe which you can prepare in advance and store:
1. Mango-Coconut-Basil Lollies
Step 1: Grind a mango or use mango pulp- whichever is available.
Step 2: Take a cup of coconut water and grind it with the mango. I also add the meat portion (also known as malai) to it.
Step 3: Soak basil seeds in some water for a couple of minutes and allow it to swell. You can add some rose water and honey to it if you like.
Step 4: In a popsicle mould, pour the basil seeds until 1/5th of the mould is filled. Then add a few cranberries or pomegranate seeds (optional)
Step 5: Layer it with the thick mango coconut juice and freeze for at least 7-8 hours.
You can have anytime once set.
2. Makhana Bhel
Step 1. Melt 1.5 tsp ghee in a pan.
Step 2. Add some mustard seeds, curry leaves and slit green chillies (based on how spicy you or your toddler prefer)
Step 3. Then add a fistful of fox nuts (makhana) and roast them until they’re crispy.
Step 4. Once done, add a bowl puffed rice (kurmura) to it.
Step 5: Add salt and turmeric and mix well until it’s evenly coloured. Store in an airtight container.
(You can tweak the quantities of ingredients based on the amount of bhel you’re intending to prepare)
Hope this article was helpful!
More more ideas, you can check my previous post. (I’ve shared 12 easy and quick recipes for infants and toddlers)
P.S This article is my participation post in the #SummerFoodBlogTrain organised by Anisha, Deepali and Danisha.
Make sure read their articles on the same by clicking here:
1. Deepali’s post
2. Anisha’s post
Thanks for tagging and inviting me to share my entry, Gunjan.
If you’d like to read her post, tap here.
Thanks for stopping by and reading!
There’s a reason why a child is lean. But first, let me take you through my journey and share my experience.
“Get her admitted immediately. I’m coming to the hospital in an hour to see her.” My Gynaeceologist told my husband and he, along with my mom quickly arranged for all the said medicines. I was quietly lying on a bed in one corner of the hospital room, wondering if I will ever deliver this baby.
It had just been four months since I got pregnant, but it looked like ages. Continuous vomits had drained me completely. I didn’t just have morning sickness, my misery continued all day and night. Especially night! I had to sleep near the bathroom because the urge to vomit woke me up every half an hour or so. My BP had dropped drastically, I was severely dehydrated and at times, I used to have black outs which once resulted in fainting too.
Basically, I was suffering from Hyperemesis Gravidarum- a rare condition few pregnant women suffer from. After being on just medicines and NBM, I finally got better and returned back home 3 days later. Needless to say, I had to quit my job and take good rest. Such was the beginning of my pregnancy.
Later, at around 6 months, I was detected with Intra-Uterine Growth Restriction, a condition wherein the baby doesn’t grow to an optimum level and has extremely low weight. Such babies are at a high risk of developing diseases since they’re very fragile.
Finally, at 37 weeks, after taking several protein injections, we delivered my little one via LSCS. Yes, we took opinions from several experts and doctors and realised that it was the safest option for our child.
When she was born, she weighed 2.3kgs and by the time we came back home, she was down to 2.1kgs. Textbooks may classify her as LBW i.e. Low Birth Weight or SGA i.e. Small for Gestational Age baby. But she was a perfectly healthy child. Unlike most LBW babies, she didn’t suffer from Jaundice and wasn’t even kept in the NICU for observation. I can’t thank the Almighty enough for this grace. (To see World Health organisation’s Growth Chart for babies 0-2y, click here)
You may ask, why am I sharing about my pregnancy ?
Because there are reasons why lean babies are lean. Not all pregnancies are easy. Also, not all babies who weigh more are healthy and not all lean babies, weak!
We live in a very strange society. It surprises me, how quick are people to judge both the child and the mother. In fact, it’s a shame that we look at newborns with judgmental eyes and even have the audacity to pass comments.
I’ve often seen people comment on the weight of the baby- both less and more, complexion of the baby, method of delivery- vaginal or LSCS, if the mother is breastfeeding or has opted to formula feed, if she’s working or has decided to stay at home- basically everything!
I too was one of the victims. I still am. Even today, people pass sarcastic comments on her weight (She’s 1 year old and weighs 7.5kgs). Since I’m a nutritionist myself, I get the worst ones. “Has your mom put you on a diet?” they tell her; and then there are comments on the quality of my milk too-“Your milk must be thin like you”, and of course, speculations on if I even feed her- “She is so weak, don’t you give her food?”etc.
My only question to them is- “which mom won’t feed her child?!”
These remarks often leave me speechless. I never respond to such comments, but I lose my cool when they say- she’s weak. She’s lean, not weak! Don’t you know the difference?! 😒
Anyway, now that you have patiently read my rant 🙈 and you also know the background, let’s move on to the main issue:
Is being underweight a matter of concern?
Let me ask you a question. Does your weight match the standards set by the health organisations? No, right? Similarly, it’s perfectly normal for the child to not match those standards too. As long as he is eating optimum nutritious food, achieving his developmental milestones on time, is playful and energetic, doesn’t fall sick, has a good immune system, he’s a healthy baby. Don’t let the numbers worry you. Don’t give him additional formula milk or bottles of vitamins and minerals just so that he gains weight. He doesn’t need that. He just needs healthy, nutritious meals and your love!
Why is my child underweight?
There can be several reasons. Some are:
- Pregnancy complications- like it was in my case
- Genetics- When my daughter’s paediatrician first came to see her in the hospital, I asked her- why is my girl underweight? She turned to my mom and asked her about my birth weight. I was 2.5kgs when born and my husband was a fairly lean baby too. I got my answer.
- Exclusive breastfeeding: EBF children are often leaner as compared to formula fed children. And by lean, I just mean their weight is less. That being said, they are more active and fall ill less often because their immune system is very strong.
- Hyperactivity: Lean babies are extremely active and thus they don’t easily gain weight too. It’s a vicious cycle.
When should I be worried?
- If your child is inactive and isn’t playful
- If he isn’t eating well or spits out all his food
- If he’s falling ill often
- If he has frequent bouts of diarrhoea
- His pee/poop frequency has reduced.
What should I feed my child with?
You would be tempted to (and often advised to) give your child not-so-healthy fattening foods. But trust me, your child needs healthy, nutritious meals more than anything else. Add colour and variety to his plate. Give him combinations of food and try to add all possible food groups. You’ll find some interesting ideas here.
Also, there are a few good high carbohydrates, proteins and fat foods that can be a part of your child’s meals, like:
- Sweet potatoes
- Peanut butter
- Paneer etc.
Avoid adding a lot of sugar, ghee and butter to his meals. Childhood obesity is another pressing issue and we don’t want to jump from this puddle to that one in the future.
Does my child require multivitamins or formula feed?
Formula milk will only make him bulky, not healthier. So, if that’s your aim, go ahead. Your milk is absolutely perfect and he doesn’t need anything over and above it. Also, if he’s on breast-milk, he requires no additional supplement to gain weight.
What if my child has a poor appetite?
If your child isn’t eating well, that’s an added concern. I’ll try to jot down an article on how to deal with fussy eaters, but here’s one tip for now- add ARF to his food. By doing so, you increase the nutrients in his meal without adding bulk to it. Basically, he will derive more energy and nutrients from the same amount of food.
How to prepare ARF?
1. Soak grains and/or pulses of your choice for 12 hours.
2. Germinate it for another 12 hours.
3. Dry roast or sun dry it.
4. Grind it into a powder and store in an airtight container.
5. Add one to two teaspoons to his preparations.
I hope you found this article helpful. Please feel free to ask if you have any questions. Comment down below and I’ll definitely try to answer them.
Have a great day and don’t worry, your child is healthy! 🙂
You’re doing a good job, mama ❤
Cooking for our little ones is one of the most satisfying activities, isn’t it? But here’s a confession, there have been days when I couldn’t provide her with nutritious meals due to my busy schedule and trust me, I used to feel extremely guilty about it. I’m pretty sure there’re many mothers who are going through the same.
There’s a famous quote by Bill Gates where he says, “I choose a lazy person to do a hard job. Because a lazy person will find an easy way to do it.”
I’m that lazy person :p
Here are a few baby food recipes for moms of 6-12 month old babies out there! These recipes are very quick and easy, just make sure you you do your pre-preparation and planning right.
Before we start, here are some guidelines for you:
1. Make sure that your recipe has at least 2-3 food groups.
2. Avoid processed and packaged foods, no matter now fancy the packaging may be.
3. Your child doesn’t need sweetness or salt in his food. Try to avoid that too.
4. Dal water, rice water or basically anything just boiled in water is not a healthy option!
Let’s delve straight into the recipes now!
Age: 6-7 months (Puréed to soft mashed foods)
1. Ragi apple/mango porridge:
Boil apple and grind it into a paste. For mangoes, you can just peel and grind it.
Take some ghee and lightly roast ragi. Add this purée and gently stir it. Add some water to make a thick paste! And voila, it’s ready
2. Sweet potato and strawberry purée
Boil and grind sweet potato with fresh strawberries until a thick creamy paste is formed. My girl loved this!
3. Beet root, banana and berries smoothie
Take boiled and chopped beet root, add sliced bananas, a few berries of your choice and some homemade curd. Blend all of this together and serve.
4. Chickoo Sheera
This was my girl’s absolute favourite. Sauté some rava in ghee, add puréed Chickoo and water. And it’s ready! You can try this with mangoes too.
Age: 7-10 months (Semi-solids to solids)
By 7.5 months, my girl was eating pretty much all solids that we did. We had a smooth transition because she loved eating on her own and showed interest in what we ate.
1. Mashed Cutlets/kebabs
I remember, this was my go-to food for a long time because she used to love kebabs
Boil potatoes and chicken (or soya nuggets/pulse of your choice). You can add blanched spinach too. Mix it all and add some lemon, finely minced onion and cumin seeds. Mix it all and dip in egg (or rawa) and shallow fry. Mash if needed or give small bite size pieces to your baby.
2. Roti porridge
Take 1-2 chapatis and chop them into small pieces. Take some ghee in a vessel, sauté cumin seeds and finely chopped onions. Add some ginger garlic paste. Then add chapattis and turmeric powder to it. Once soft, add some fresh curd and voila! It’s done.
3. Vegetable Paneer khichadi
Take dal and rice in equal amounts and soak. First, take ghee in a pressure cooker. Sauté cumin seeds and add chopped onions and tomatoes. Chop a mix of veggies and paneer and add to it. Then add rice and dal and allow it to cook in until soft.
4. Oats Upma
Lightly roasted and grind instant oats. In a wok, add ghee/oil and your regular Upma ingredients like onion, tomatoes etc. Then add oats and sauté, until it’s slightly cooked. Once done, add water, cover with a lid and cook until ready.
Age: 10-12 months (Solids)
1. Instant Coconut Idlis
Mix rava and curd in equal amounts. Add desiccated coconut (easily available) or you can use fresh ground coconut too. You can also add finely grated carrots to add some colour to it. Add optimum water until the required consistency is obtained. Place in an Idli maker and steam until done.
2. Spinach Cheela
Blanch and grind spinach. Mix it with besan (chana flour). Add water, cumin seeds powder and turmeric to it. Spread like a dosa and keep flipping until both the sides are well cooked. Grate some cottage cheese (paneer) on it and give small bite size pieces to your baby. (Can be made with moong dal too).
3. Mango, papaya and dates smoothie
Chop and grind mango, papaya and dates with a little curd and water. You’ll get a smoothie which serves as great evening snack for babies.
4. Chickpea and egg yolk patties
Soak, boil and grind chickpea. In a grinder, mix it with a clove, cumin seeds, lemon and boiled egg yolk (optional). You’ll get a smooth textured thick paste after blending them together. Add chopped coriander leaves to it. Make small flat balls and shallow fry them until well cooked.
(P.S. use just egg yolk and not the white until your baby is a year old)
Hope you found these recipes useful! Please subscribe to be notified whenever I post an article! 🙂
Have a great day and happy parenting!
(P.S. Images are for representation purposes only)
Long before I got pregnant, I made a list of things that I’d do when I breast-feed my baby— from talking to her and caressing her hair to reciting holy books and lullabies. And believe me, I did it all, for one complete month. And then, before I realised, I was aimlessly scrolling through my phone every time I nursed her. It slowly became a routine.
Every time she was hungry, I picked her up and began to nurse even without noticing her cues, looking at her face or seeing those pretty eyes.
As she grew, she learnt to play with my top, tried to pull my nose and put her fingers inside my mouth to touch my teeth, while I kept my self busy checking my notifications on Facebook and Instagram, watching random YouTube videos or simply checking deals on Shopping sites.
Honestly, deep down inside me, I hated myself and felt the guilt, but just like many other things we don’t like but still continue to do, this too became the same.
Soon I started to write parenting articles and the best time I could do that was when I nursed her. Albiet, my focus had changed and I was making more constructive use of this time, nonetheless, my actions remained the same.
Just like that, 2018 commenced. I was going through the resolutions made by people on the New Year’s Eve, and saw many people mention ‘Phone Detox’ as one of their goals. It was then it struck me, that I don’t need a complete detox, but there’s one thing that I really need to work on and that was- ‘Quality Nursing Time.’
I didn’t wait to jot it down in a planner or streamline my daily routine to work on it, but I chose to start immediately. That’s the thing about goals- you don’t always need to plan and wait for the right time, you just need to buckle up and start working on them as soon as possible.
After I made up my mind and it was time to nurse her, I held her in my arms and gave her a huge welcoming smile as I unbuttoned. She looked back at me with a twinkle in her eyes- the kind I’d never seen before. I realised how beautiful this little girl of mine was- so innocent and angelic. Throughout the nursing session I kept caressing her hair and read out lullabies and chants, just like I had planned to. I looked at her hands and noticed the cute dimples that she had below her fingers; I saw her face and noticed how it was full of enthusiasm; I saw her feet which constantly wiggled throughout. She continued to look at me and I noticed how the magic of breastmilk slowly worked and how beautifully she drifted off to sleep. Yes, that was my girl- the little squish that came out of me a couple of months ago, who was so delicate and tiny that she couldn’t even turn her head in the direction she wanted and here she is- all grown up and ready to walk independently. How quickly all these months flew by!
We often say kids grow up in the blink of an eye, but the truth is that we are so occupied in ourselves that we forget to notice them grow. Things like notifications, calls, shopping etc. can wait, we can do those when our little ones are asleep, but our children will never be this little again. They’ll never run to us to get a hug, they’ll never find joy in coming to us to get milk, they’ll never play peekaboo with our tshirts when they eat and they’ll probably never love us with the same pure feelings as they do today.
Someday in the future, we would scroll through their photos and miss these days! Why not cuddle and snuggle them as much we can before these lovely moments are gone?
Nursing our little ones is not just another mom-duty. It’s an unparalleled bond that we share which is like nothing else in the world. It’s like giving a part of yourself to your baby- the kind of nourishment and nurturing she will receive from no one ever! It’s therapeutic, not just for them but for us mothers too. Try to live in the moment- to feel the flow of liquid gold from your body to your baby’s and experience the magnificence. Try to make nursing sessions bonding times with your baby. Researchers have found that the strength of mothers emotional bond with the baby may trump all the other cautionary measures we take- like vaccinations, monthly check ups with the paediatrician etc., to help the baby thrive. A close attachment can prevent diseases, boost immunity and even enhance their IQ! Isn’t that amazing?
I’m still working on this and I urge you to try too! 🙂 I’m sure you’ll thank me for this.
(Just another mother who errs and learns)
P.S. Please excuse all the typos and errors. Wrote this while my little bundle of joy was sleeping. You know the time crunch we mothers have 🙈
Feeding babies is equally exciting and daunting. Mothers often face several challenges when it comes up feeding their little ones. So I’ve jotted down a few points which I hope you find useful.
Once the baby reaches the 6th month mark, you get a green signal from the paediatrician to start with complimentary feeding, because now, milk alone is not sufficient to meet his growing requirements. But is it just the age that determines if he’s ready for it or should we be looking for more signs? Yes, you’ll have to tick-all-the-boxes before you put that first morsel in his tiny mouth.
(Being a nutritionist and a mom-blogger, I often get many requests to share about child nutrition and also few insights on complimentary feeding; so here’s my quick attempt at it for you)
- Can sit without support
- Has started to develop pincer grasp, which means he can hold things between his thumb and forefinger (first finger)
- Has lost tongue thrust, which means he won’t push out solids from his mouth when given
- Shows interest in food and is willing to chew
- Suddenly has an increased demand to breastfeed- an indication of increased appetite. (Not a clear indicator though since teething, growth spurt, cold etc. can also show the same consequence)
2. Getting the equipments ready
The list is endless, but if I had to mention a few essentials, they would be: a high chair or a booster seat, bibs, sipper cup, small spoon that can be preloaded and given and a plate with some depth.
Click here to see a comprehensive list of items that you’ll need .
3. How to feed?
I opted for ‘combination’ method- i.e. a mix of Traditional feeding and Baby Led Weaning. I’ve jotted down a blog post on why I chose this method. Click here to read it now.
4. How to practise this method?
Step1: Make the baby sit on the booster seat/high chair
Step 2: Place the BLW food (ideas are mentioned below)
Step 3: Allow the baby to pick up the food, explore, inspect and eat on his own. Keep supervising.
Step 4: There’ll be a lot of mess and to be honest, there’ll be more food on the floor than inside the mouth, which is absolutely normal
Step 5: Get to traditional feeding- ie. spoon feeding to fill the nutritional gap
5. Points to remember
- Never force feed
- Don’t try variety of foods at once. Let the baby understand the taste of each food. Variety often confuses them
- Follow the baby’s cues. If he is not showing interest in food, it simply means he is full and doesn’t want more. Especially while following BLW, you can wait for 10 mins and if he’s not picking up anything to eat, you can try another time
- Avoid salt and sugar until 1 year of age. Their kidneys are not very developed and it’s better to keep it easier for them to function well. Children don’t need salt for taste. Essentially, at this age, it’s important for them to understand the unique flavour of each food item.
- By the time the baby is 1 year old, h age should be able to eat from the same plate as yours- with all the seasonings and spices like you do.
6. Quantity and the number of times you need to feed
- Initially, the baby might just take a spoonful a day, which is again very normal. Gradually, his appetite will increase and it’ll be evident from his intake
- Still, I’ve jotted down the number of feeds a child requires at different ages. Also, each child is different and so is his eating pattern. He might eat a little more than mentioned, which is alright too:
- 6-7 months: 1-2 solid feeds a day
- 8-9 monts: 2-3 solid feeds a day
- 9 months to 1 year: 3-4 solid feeds a day
7. What to feed?
I knew you were waiting for this! So here we go! I’ve listed a few ideas that I’ve been trying and obviously you can get experimental and try many more.
At this stage, there are two things to remember. One, give simple (and healthy, ofcourse) carbs that are easy to digest and two, don’t give a variety. Infact, you can repeat the same food for three days and then try something else. This will also help in ruling out allergies, if any. Note: you don’t have to give Dal water or rice water like it was a norm earlier- all the nutrients are lost in the process and there’s barely anything that the baby gets from it.
- Stewed Apple
- Stewed pear
- Boiled potatoes
- Boiled sweet potatoes
- Stewed carrot
- Stewed pumpkin
Traditional feeding ideas:
- Ragi porridge
- Tomato and beetroot purée
- Dal boiled and blended
- Muskmelon juice
- Puréed potato
At this age, it’s best to give a combination of foods and also help the baby hold the spoon and feed herself.
- Idli pieces
- All seasonal fruits
- Mildly seasoned kebabs/tikkis like mashed corn and potato kebab, spinach, potato and mashed peas kebab etc
- Chapatti/ Aloo or cauliflower paratha
- Steamed veggies
- Boiled egg yolk
- Khichadi with curd
- Mixed pulses dal with rice
- Curd with chapati
- Ragi porridge with a combination of fruits
- Mixed fruit smoothies
- Spinach/fenugreek dal
- Mashed potatoes and veggies with rice
- Scrambled egg yolk
By this age, the child can start to eat pretty much everything that adults do. There should ideally be less of spoon feeding and more of BLW at this age. Some ideas are:
- Pancakes, dosas and chillas
- Stuffed Parathas with curd
- Regular gravies with rice
- Noodle soup
These are some ideas I could think of. You can always follow what’s given culturally. Just make sure to avoid a few food items like:
- Salt and sugar
- Egg white
- Dry fruits
- Raw veggies
- Undercooked non-vegetarian foods
- Foods that can cause chocking like popcorn, large chunks of soya etc
- Sweets, chips and other junk items
Hope this was helpful!
So comment below if this article helped you and share with your friends who might need. Also, if you’ve got more ideas and inputs, feel free to share below.
Elina Dawoodani Wadia
Nutritionist and Lifestyle Coach
Weaning, also now known as complementary feeding, can be a daunting and time consuming process, and to make the journey smoother for you and for the baby, getting the right tool plays a key role. I started weaning my daughter when she was 5.5 months old (It’s highly suggested to start at 6 months, but due to certain unavoidable circumstances, I had to commence early). So, before I started solids, I did a little research, made a list and zeroed on a few things for her which are super handy and are easy to use. Without wasting much time, let me quickly share the list with you too!
Also, before I share the items, it’s important for me to inform you about the route I chose for weaning- i.e. Combination Feeding. What I do is- I place some soft solids on her table and allow her to hold, explore and try eating on her own. Once she tries to pick it, puts in her mouth, eats a little and gets bored, I take it from her, puree/mash it and feed her, to fill the nutritional gap.
So, here we go:
1. Booster seat/ High chair
It aids in keeping the child focused while eating and limits his mobility, which helps in increasing his intake. I was looking for something that can be folded when not used and also be carried along while travelling, so I purchased this booster seat by Fisher Price. You can easily find it in local shops and on Amazon too.
Here’s the link: http://www.amazon.in/Fisher-Price-Quick-Clean-Booster/dp/B00B9ZRZTY?tag=googinhydr18418-21
Once the baby starts eating, it’s going to be messy. It’ll take a while for the baby to learn to eat in a disciplined way. To keep her clothes from getting soiled, bibs are a must have ! You can get the silicone ones with crumb catchers, plastic ones, regular cloth ones or denim ones, based on your choice and requirements. I purchased mine from Firstcry and loved the quality. They’re very quirky and easy to clean too.
Here’s the link: http://www.firstcry.com/nahshonbaby/nahshonbaby-bibs-multiprint-pack-of-7-multicolour/899699/product-detail
3. Spout Cup:
Once the baby is introduced to solids, he will need water too. I chose not to give my daughter any bottle since it can be habit forming and also she was too young to have water straight from the cup. Spout cups make the transition from nipple to cup easy. She immediately accepted it and absolutely loves to drink (and play) with water. I purchased the one by Philips Avent and swear by it.
Here’s the link: http://www.firstcry.com/avent/avent-classic-spout-cup-with-handles-200-ml-color-may-vary/584645/product-detail?sterm=philips%20avent%20spout&spos=11&sstock=1
4. Travel friendly feeding bowl:
You will need a good quality feeding bowl and spoon, made of either BPA free silicon, plastic or wood. I choose this one since it is travel friendly, apt for her age and has a masher too. I love how versatile it is.
Here’s the link: http://www.firstcry.com/littles/littles-mashing-and-feeding-bowl-blue/97693/product-detail?ref=GoogleShopping_2_Dishes-and-Utensils&gclid=Cj0KCQjw5arMBRDzARIsAAqmJew6Qn59iyjbNN-RXyCteM9NDPByas2OEIA3JMyr0W4EkGMGFdmwUaIaAnsqEALw_wcB
I actually got this as a gift and my daughter loves it. It acts as a teether while providing the baby with the juice of the fruit put in it. Also, many mothers are worried about the baby accidentally chewing a large price of the fruit which can result in choking. This feeder prevents that and hence is a great way to give babies different fresh fruits. I have another one, brought from Australia, but this feeder is very similar to the one I have.
Here’s the link: http://www.firstcry.com/sassy/sassy-teething-feeder/90001680/product-detail?sterm=feeder&spos=1&sstock=1
I hope you found this article helpful!
Please share your thoughts/suggestions too. Thanks for reading! 🙂
A number of new age moms are attracted to the concept of Baby Led Weaning (BLW) because it decreases the fuss of running behind the babies and makes them used to eating all by themselves right from the beginning. This, definitely, makes eating enjoyable and less challenging, but it has its own set of drawbacks- which I’d like to throw some light on.
Being a nutritionist, a new mom, and now an active blogger, I came across BLW several times and was tempted to try it too. And honestly I was thrilled to see how my little one grabbed food from me and put in her mouth! No, not because it was food and she liked it, more so, because it’s a reflex. Infact, BLW manoeuvres this reflex to encourage self feeding.
While I don’t completely disapprove of BLW, in my opinion-
- Feeding should be transitioned gradually from milk to semi solids to solids, like it’s done traditionally, since, there’s a risk of choking as the baby’s trachea and easophagus are still maturing and may be underdeveloped. Infact, even when I was practising in the hospital, we ensured that every patient who was NBM (nil by mouth) due to surgery, was first given liquids and was then slowly introduced to semi solids and later solids, so that his body is at ease and adapts in a better way.
- Also, BLW shouldn’t be the only course of action. It can be combined with assisted weaning, to make sure that the baby gets all the required nutrients.
Here are some scientific evidences that support the theory of traditional weaning method:
- Indian Academy of Pediatrics (IAP), World Health Organisation (WHO), Centre for Disease Control (CDC) and all renowned national and international bodies support traditional weaning method and either disapprove or have indifferent opinions on BLW.
- WHO recommends feeding until baby shows sign of being full- which is not possible in BLW where they may keep eating as chewing soothes the itching gums.
- BLW is messy, the amount of food that goes in the mouth is relatively less as compared to what falls on the floor or the table. It’s found that babies on BLW eat lesser, due to which, they can be deprived of some major nutrients that they need during that phase.
- Yes, although milk remains the primary source of energy and nutrients, babies require additional set of nutrients that only weaning can provide. This is because they grow at a very rapid pace between the age of 6-12 months and their requirements are very high.
Poor weaning can lead to poor stature, lower immunity, nutrient deficiencies and irreversible growth stunting in babies!
Parents should be extremely cautious and should always talk to medical practitioners before starting complementary feeds. Google found answers may not always be authentic and in fact may do more harm than good.
Did you know?
- Iron and Zinc are two nutrients that breastmilk doesn’t provide with and babies need in large amounts after 6 months of age. Not getting sufficient of this can lead to early anemia and lower immunity in babies.
- Vitamin C is also an essential nutrient absent in the milk which helps in making the gums stronger. This nutrient, is essentially found in many fruits, and babies may not necessarily like those. It is important for the parents to tweak it to ensure that babies eat it in substantial amounts to stay healthy.
While BLW looks at the fun aspect of eating by following the baby’s cues and likings, but the dietary care that they require at this stage is much beyond that!
In fact, by the last quarter of their first year, babies derive around 90% of their iron and zinc requirements, and around 75% of their calcium, phosphorus, sodium and magnesium requirements from wearing foods- this definitely doesn’t sound easy and leaving it upto babies choice is not a wise decision.
No, I don’t mean we need to force feed, neither do I discourage BLW completely, but we need to tactfully merge the two and make sure they get sufficient nutrients while they also learn to eat independently.
P.S. Each mom does what’s best for her baby. This was just a summary of what I learnt after an indepth research on the same and the path I chose for my baby 🙂 I’m not judging anybody’s choice in any way.