Being a mother is not easy. Taking care of the house, doing household chores, keeping a records of bills and managing the baby all together makes the life of a mom super tiring. And on the top of all other things, there is one thing that moms can never compromise and that is baby food. Many a times we see women who often search on net, read magazines etc to gain proper information on what to feed their babies and in how much quantity. Babies can't talk or tell about their nutritional requirements, so for a mother it is extremely important to know what and how much amount of food their baby needs. Here is a guide for new moms to help them know baby food requirement.
Age: 0-4 months
Many researches have proved that just after birth, mother's milk or Colostrum is extremely important for the baby. Colostrum contains antibodies such as IgA, IgG and IgM that helps the immune system of the baby. Colostrum also helps your baby pass his/her first stool and flush excess bilirubin, the pigment which causes neonatal jaundice. So, make sure you give mother's milk to the baby right after birth. During 0-4 months the baby's digestive tract is still developing therefore breast milk and formula milk should only be given.
Age: 4-6 months
During this period your baby starts showing some action like interest in food, can close mouth when you give them food and seem hungry even after breastfeeding 8-10 times a day. You can now give 1 tablespoon of pureed food like sweet potatoes, squash, apple, bananas, peaches and pears or semi-liquid fortified cereal (mixed well with breast milk or formula milk). But when you introduce your baby with semi-liquid foods, do not over feed your baby.
Age: 6-8 months
Along with breast milk, formula milk and pureed fruits you can now also feed your baby with strained vegetables, meat, tofu and legumes. Well-boiled carrot, squash, sweet potato, chicken, black beans, chicken peas, lentils and kidney beans can be served as baby food. Quantity is one thing that should be taken care of. 3-9 tablespoons of cereal in 2-3 feeding and ¼ to ½ cup of boiled vegetable blended well in 2-3 feeding is recommended. When you start feeding these foods to your baby, see that he/she is not allergic to any of them.
Age: 8-10 months
In this age, you can start giving small amount of soft pasteurized cheese, yogurt and iron fortified cereal like rice, barley, wheat and oats. 1/8 to ¼ cup of protein foods like egg, pureed meat, boneless fish and well cooked legumes are something that you can also give to feed the baby.
During 10-12 months, you can give anything healthy that you eat but in a very small quantity. During these months you just need to check the quantity of food. 1/3 cup of dairy or ½ cup of cheese with ¼ to ½ cup of iron fortified cereal, vegetables and protein food is a must for babies during this period.