Babies have certain dietary needs which should be provided for them, in order for them to grow healthy and strong. If babies don’t get enough of the nutrients that they need, this will surely result in the development of certain ailments and deficiencies. It is important that you know what kind of food groups you’ll need to give to your baby in order for him/her to receive the right amount of nutrients for healthy growth and development.
The following are some of the important nutrients that you should be able to provide for your child:
Calcium – In order to help bones and teeth grow healthy, calcium should be present in your baby’s diet in sufficient amounts. It is also needed for the body’s overall strength. Babies who lack calcium often have frail bones and teeth. This can be supplied to the baby through breastfeeding and/or formula feeding. As your baby grows, you should include green vegetables, cheese, orange juice and other calcium-rich food.
Iron – This mineral helps in delivering adequate oxygen to several tissues in the body. Lack of iron can make your baby prone to fatigue and paleness. Although most babies have their own iron reserves in their body from birth to six months, it will be depleted and they will need to be given other sources of this mineral. You should let your baby take in baby food and formulas that are fortified with iron, green leafy vegetables, etc.
Aside from taking in iron-rich food, without sufficient Vitamin C the absorption of iron from the food that your baby eats going into the body will be quite low. That is why it is important that you should also include a vitamin C rich diet for your baby in order to improve iron absorption.
Protein – With their rapid growth, babies need to have sufficient amount of protein to help tissue regeneration and growth. Babies need more protein in their body compared to adults because of the rapid development of their tissues and growth.
In order for your baby to get enough protein, you should continue formula or breastfeeding. At the same time, if your baby is ready for solid food you might want to include fish, meat and poultry to further provide him/her with sufficient protein.
Zinc – Most helpful mineral in helping the body ward of illness and boost the immune system. It is also needed for the baby’s growth. Sources of zinc include grain, milk, cheese and many others.
Water – Aside from enough nutrients and minerals, you should make sure that your baby gets enough water to keep hydrated. Also, you should take note that our body is mostly made up of water. That is why it is important that you let your baby drink enough fluids to avoid dryness.
Fat – Children need fat as a source of calories.