How Much Milk Does A One Year Old Child Need How to Meet the Dietary Needs of Babies – Health, Palate, and Lifestyle

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How to Meet the Dietary Needs of Babies – Health, Palate, and Lifestyle

More and more studies prove that food has a big impact on our overall health and can even determine what diseases and conditions we will contract later in life. The more we are aware of the importance of our food choices, the sooner we can teach and protect our children. Of course, there is always a balance to be found between what is good for our body and what is good for our taste buds and our way of life. Here is a description of the most important nutrients for your child’s development and the foods that meet their needs.

The iron

Babies are born with their own source of iron, but this will be depleted after six months. Iron is best absorbed from meat, however vegetarian babies can increase iron absorption by eating foods rich in vitamin C (citrus fruits, berries, spinach, tomatoes) with meals. Giving milk separately from meals also promotes absorption. Iron-rich vegetarian foods include mashed apricots, molasses, fortified cereals, refined lentils, beans, and green vegetables.

Calcium

Breast milk or formula initially provides all of your baby’s calcium needs. Calcium helps teeth and bones and promotes overall strength. Good sources later include: cow’s milk, fortified soy milk and orange juice, cheeses, molasses, dark green vegetables, beans, lentils and tofu.

Protein

Babies need more protein than adults due to their rapid growth. A one-year-old needs about 15 grams or two cups of protein a day, such as milk, cheese, beans, tofu, fish, poultry, and lean meats. Combined foods such as cereals (bread, pasta, rice) with beans, lentils, avocados, cheeses or tofu will provide the necessary balance for vegetarian babies.

Vitamin B12

Vitamin B12 is usually found in animal products, such as meat and chicken. Other non-meat sources include dairy and eggs, as well as fortified foods such as soy milk and cereals.

Vitamin D

Vitamin D comes from the action of the sun on the skin. Most children living in hot climates get enough vitamin D (20-30 minutes a day, 2-3 times a week). Dietary sources of vitamin D include dairy products, eggs, and fortified foods. Breast milk or formula will provide vitamin D in the early stages. Some pediatricians recommend vitamin D supplements.

Fiber

Most of your baby’s fiber needs will be met by fruits, vegetables and cereals. Be careful because a diet too high in fiber and whole grains can satiate a child before their nutritional needs are met and interfere with the absorption of minerals such as zinc, iron and calcium. Too much fiber can also cause diarrhea or an upset stomach for your baby.

Zinc

Zinc is important for a healthy immune system and for growth. Offer your child plenty of zinc-rich foods like wheat germ, lean meats, milk, lentils, beans, peas, corn, and soy. Zinc, like iron, can be a problem for vegetarian babies due to poor absorption.

Big

Infants get 40-50% of their calories from fat, breast milk or formula. After the first 12 months, your baby will receive fat from whole cow’s milk. After the age of two, the Pediatric Committee of the National Cholesterol Education Program recommends reducing fat calories to 30% or less of the total diet. Now is the time to switch from whole milk and dairy products to low-fat versions. Sources of healthy fats include nuts, canola oil, avocado, milk, cheese and yogurt.

Antioxidants

These are important early on because they prevent damage to developing DNA. The average American family only eats 50% of what is recommended. Vegetables and fruits are the best source of antioxidants, including: sweet potatoes, carrots, kiwi, broccoli, avocados and blueberries.

Water

Babies get water from formula and breast milk right from the start. However, once solids are introduced, they may need more liquids to make swallowing easier. Water is needed for hydration as children become more active.

The nutrients listed above are good for all ages. While they aid in your child’s development, they also keep adults healthy and free from disease. You are the expert when it comes to your family and your child. If you have a concern, trust your instincts and find someone to help with your health and nutrition questions and concerns – pediatricians, nutritionists, dietitians and lactation consultants are ideal resources. Generally, steady growth is the best evidence that your child is getting the right amount of food.

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