Having babies can be a most enchanting experience. However the happiness can quickly morph into worry and concern for the health of the child. Bringing up a baby can be a tough job and you need to be an active parent to do it properly. Before actually having a child, you should acquaint yourself with the steps that need to be followed for their well being.
Food itself is such a confusing area, you will need to read up on a lot of information before you know how to ensure that your baby is getting the right nutrients.
At the time of their birth, nothing can replace breast milk. Breast milk has all the required nutrition, antibodies and is of the right temperature. There is nothing better to feed the child during this period. For the initial three months the baby will require 5-7 feedings daily. This will reduce as they grow older. If you are not being able to give breast milk to the baby then you can also substitute it with Iron fortified infant formula.
For the initial 4 months, the baby will not be ready for solid food. It is only after the fourth months that you can gradually introduce solid food. Take care, however, that this solid food is very soft in consistency. Start with infant cereal. You can feed the baby with a spoon during this time. Be careful that you slowly introduce one kind of cereal at a time. You can start with rice, then oatmeal, and then soy.
Once your baby is 5 months old, you can start giving her mashed or pureed fruits and vegetables. Do not add any salt or sugar to these. Most children will love the vegetables. However do not rush them if they are not ready. After a few weeks of giving these you can move on to other mashed table foods.
It is also during these months that your baby will be able to drink from a cup. You can then give them unsweetened fruit juice, but this should not be more than 60ml a day.
When the baby is 6-8 months old it is ready to chew and eat from a spoon. You can now start giving them pureed poultry, meat, fish, peas and beans. These will give her the necessary vitamins and minerals. But do not add salt to this. The baby will also start growing teeth at this time. You can now introduce egg yolk, cheese and yogurt to their diet.
During this time the baby will start grabbing things. You should give him finger food like unsalted crackers, soft fruits and vegetables. Even while you are giving your baby all this, the breast feeding should not stop.
By the time your baby is 9 months old, she will be able to eat a variety of foods. Now you can also start giving her cows milk in place of the breast milk or formula. As he or she grows older, they will develop adult eating habits and their appetite will grow. Her or she does not need pureed stuff now as this will not develop her chewing habits.
You can now offer the child three meals a day. Give them milk, poultry, vegetables, fruits and cereals. Encourage them to drink from a cup. It would also be helpful if you draw up a chart of their food habits and regularly get her checked up by a doctor.
Doug Preston researches money saving techniques and maintains a web page containing information on baby products and free printable baby coupons.