The foundation for healthful eating should be laid before the baby is born. Will you breast-feed or bottle-feed? How will you supplement and then replace breast milk or formula when the time comes? Children can breast-feed through the first year of life, but it’s still a good idea to prepare a nutritional plan for infancy and toddler hood. Today we cover brief information about nutrition for the infant and toddler.
You can get good nutritional advice from the doctor’s office, clinic, hospital seminars, local health departments, or even some breast-feeding or childbirth groups. In recent years, experts have learned a lot about nutrition, which has led to changes in some dietary recommendations. Try to follow their guidelines, but know that you’ll be tailoring any diet to fulfill your own baby’s needs. Plus, your child’s needs will change as he or she grows. To make sure your child doesn’t get malnourished, your nutritional plan should be well balanced. The diet should be varied.
And, it should supply both nutrients and energy, to help ensure good growth and good health. Too little food will lead to slow growth. Foods have to supply enough calories (energy) to keep the body working and bones and muscles growing, in addition to those calories needed to provide energy to move around and play. But don’t overdo it on the calories, either! When planning your child’s diet, remember that babies need lots of fluids (liquids), too.
There’s a great deal of difference among the proteins found in breast milk, cow’s milk, and formula. Mother’s milk is the only milk that contains human proteins, in the right amount for human babies. A major nutritional problem we have in the “industrialized” world is too much protein. This is especially problematic for children. High protein intake can be a burden on a baby’s kidneys, especially if the baby isn’t getting enough fluids. Formulas and cow’s milk contain more proteins than mother’s milk. [Read more…] about Nutrition for the Infant and Toddler