You can easily figure out his preferences for flavours now, whether he craves for sweet like his dear daddy or loves the tangy salty flavor like his momma. But, soon these choices will also change, and you will have to continuously figure out the changing taste and likings of your sweetheart.
As your baby is about to turn 1, and is growing up fast so start giving some healthy snacks servings during the day (but make sure to have a gap of 1-2 hrs between mealtime and snacks). Setting a mealtime routine is a must, sooner the better.
Breast milk/Formula and other dairy products:
As I have already told in my other articles that breast milk/formula is the main source of nutrition till the baby’s 1st birthday. But, now you have to start reducing the dependence on milk and emphasize more on solids. Milk and other dairy products provide the calcium(daily requirement of 700 mg) and Vit D(daily requirement of 600 IU) to help build strong bones. Generally, the calcium requirement is met but vit D requirement is not fulfilled by this quantity. American academy of pediatrics recommends vit D supplementation of 400 IU per day if a child is drinking less than 1 litre of milk in a day. So you should ask your doctor about the need of any such supplementation. Bring variety in your dairy products as well. Give different type of cheese, yoghurt, chhena, paneer in variety of preparations. For various recipes click here
Suggested serving: 16-24 oz/480-720 ml of whole or full cream/fat milk (semi-skimmed milk is too low in calories for this age) in 2-3 servings in the form of milk/cheese/yoghurt/chhena/shakes etc. ( if breastfeeding than 2-3 nursings and adjusting the whole milk accordingly).
But, more than this quantity of milk can prevent iron absorption from his food and also keep his tummy full and hence less hungry.
Cereals & Grains:
Cereals and grains form the basic and most important part of the baby’s meal. They set the foundation for a strong and healthy life ahead. The energy meter to roll, crawl, walk and shout is recharged by the complex carbohydrates, vitamin B complex, minerals like zinc and magnesium and fiber which they get from the cereals and grains.
Almost all grains can be given to the baby at this age. Rice/wheat/barley/raagi/maize/pulses etc.
Avoid pulses (specially in dinner), which are heavy on stomach and causes gas like urad/chana dal/kabuli chana/rajma
Now, your baby has developed the pincer grasp and is ready for finger foods. So start encouraging the eating on his own habit and cook variety of finger foods. Serve well cooked and slightly mashed vegetable khichdi,vegetable pulav,soups,dosa,idli,porridges,sheera(halwa),upma,kheer etc. For recipe click here.
Suggested serving: About 4 servings ( one serving equals ½ slice bread, ¼ cup dry cereal, 1/3 cup cooked cereal/rice etc)
Continue the infant cereals 2 times/day for the extra iron.
Any kind of fruits can be given at this stage. Lot of berries and citrus fruits. Sweet and nutritious whole fruits are full of vitamins and fiber. Try different smoothies, shakes, custard, fruit chat etc to give fruits in all forms.
Avoid juices and try to give whole fruit instead.
You can buy a fruit nibbler and put cut fruit into it and let your baby explore it, without the risk of choking.
Suggested serving: About 15 tbsp (in 1-2 servings). One serving equals ¼ cup canned fruit, 1/2 cup fresh fruit,4 oz (120 ml) of 100% fruit juice.
You never know, how your little one is going to react on various vegetables offered to them. Normally, kids don’t like to eat veggies and mothers have to really struggle hard to get them eat it. So, its always better to develop a liking and pallet for all the types of vegetables from an early age. Give all kinds of vegetables like Carrot, cucumber, broccoli, cauliflower, gourds, pumpkin etc. Vegetables have vitamins (A, B and C), trace minerals, fibers and protein.
Try giving both slightly cooked and cooked veggies (avoid raw as of now). A piece of carrot can be a very good finger food with least mess involved.
You can add veggies in almost all the recipes you make, khichdi,soup,sandwiches,pulav etc. for recipes click here.
Suggested serving: About 10 tbsp of cooked veggies (in 1-2 servings).
Proteins are the building blocks of our body, our baby needs it the most at this age to build strong muscles.
Give at least 1 protein rich meal in your baby’s daily diet. Lentils are also a good source of proteins.
Suggested serving: Around 5 tbsp(divided into 1-2 servings) of cooked pureed meats,cheese cubes, tofu,egg yolk etc.
A toddler needs 7 mgs of iron each day. Once the child reaches the 1 year mark it’s important to watch out for iron deficiency because the child no longer drinks iron fortified formula or cereals and may lack on iron rich foods as well. Iron deficiency can affect their physical, mental and behavioral development, and can also lead to anemia.
To help prevent iron deficiency
- Limit your baby’s milk intake to 16-20 oz/480-720 ml a day, because this can affect iron absorption.
- Increase iron rich foods like meat,eggs,fish,beans,leafy veggies.
- When serving iron rich meals, include vit C rich foods(tomatoes, broccoli,oranges,strawberry etc) , which improves iron absorption.
- Also, you can continue the iron fortified baby cereals till the age of 18-24 months old.
A child’s body is more than 70 percent water! So keep your child hydrated and develop a taste for water for a healthy life ahead. At this stage a child needs 1.3 litres of fluids a day which includes water, milk,soups, juices and other fluids. The best way to check if the child is getting enough fluid is to check on the urine, which should be colorless or light colored. Water plays an important role in maintaining body temperature, removing waste in urine, moving nutrients throughout the body, maintain a healthy weight, improving concentration, reducing common problems like constipation and urinary tract infections.
Suggested intake: No set rules to it, but if your kiddo is having 600 ml of milk, 250-300 ml of juice/soups/or any other drink then you need to give at least 400-450 ml of water to keep him/her hydrated. At the same time you have to be wise enough to limit its over intake, because too much water may reduce appetite and loss of nutrients.
Foods/drinks to avoid:
Still keep fatty and sugary food and drinks at bay.
Avoid semi-skimmed milk as that is too low on calorie at this age and prefer whole cream milk.
Look out for any allergy or family history for a particular allergy. Try introducing one food item at a time for 2-3 days to look out for any possible allergy.
Remember??? “healthy growing baby” and a “healthy glowing mommy”
All the best…happy parenting!