10 essential nutrients to feed your baby after first 6 months: In the first few years for proper growth and development of the baby, proper nutrients are very essential. For the first six months, human milk has all the vital nutrients required by the infant, but for the other additional six months of the first year, other nutrients are imperative to healthy brain development and physical growth. Every parent listens a thousand times people recommending them a balanced diet for their infant, but a question remains unsolved, a balance of what?
The following list represents age-appropriate recommended essential nutrients to feed your baby after first 6 months:
Iron is an important nutrient required for making of hemoglobin in the blood, which is responsible for carrying oxygen to all the parts of the body. Lack of iron may cause anemia to your infant which causes weakness and fatigue. Your child must get about 6-7 milligrams of iron per day. Some of the best sources of iron are ready to eat cereal, fortified oatmeal, blackstrap molasses, whole wheat bread, apple, raw tofu, etc.
Calcium is the storehouse of vital features required for optimal growth of infants. Calcium helps in strengthening the bones and muscles of an infant, builds stronger teeth, improves the neurological system and supports healthy growth of the child during the early years of his life. Your infant needs about 600- 700 milligrams of calcium per day. Breast milk is the best source of calcium but is not enough. Other sources include cheese, yogurt, green veggies, soy milk, kidney beans, peas, Orange juice, etc.
Zinc performs many important roles throughout the human body and significant amounts of zinc must be supplied in your child’s diet to ensure healthy growth and development. Zinc promotes the secretion of enzymes in the body for regulating metabolism and digestion. It is not important to include zinc in the diet every day, you can aim for an average supply over the course of the week. Some excellent sources of zinc include wheat, cereals, peas, beans, lentils, cheese, yogurt, cooked meat, oatmeal, wheat germ, etc.
It is important to maintain balanced levels of potassium in your infant’s diet for optimum blood pressure. Potassium reacts chemically with sodium to regulate water balance in the body to maintain the blood pressure. Potassium helps in protecting infants from the risk of kidney stones in the later stage of their life. You must know too much or too low levels of potassium may cause health problems of many kinds. Infants from 6 to 12 months of age require 600-700 mg of potassium every day. Some of the best sources of potassium include medium baked potato, prune juice, tomato juice, raisins, sunflower seeds, cooked spinach, an ounce of almonds and much more.
Vitamin B12 triggers the secretion of enzymes which are essential for intellectual and neurological growth of an infant. It helps in synthesizing RBCs, DNA and RNA improve metabolism and reduces risk of nerve disorders. Animal based foods are the best source of Vitamin B12.
Vitamin A performs the role of improving bone and muscles, healthy skin, vision and improves the immune system of your child’s body. Milk, cheese, and eggs are the most reliable sources of Vitamin A.
Vitamin D assists in absorbing calcium that promotes bone and stronger tooth formation in the infants. You must know, vitamin D deficiency in your infant may cause rickets which is a bone disorder. Vitamin D is produced by the body when the body is exposed to sunlight.
Vitamin E is an antioxidant that protects the body against harmful radicals that develops Alzheimer’s disease, heart stroke etc. It boosts the immune system of your infant’s body and protects him from various infections at an early stage. The reliable sources include Peanut Butter, Almond Oil, Sunflower seeds, Kiwi, etc.
Vitamin K assists in clotting of blood during injury and prevents excessive loss of blood. Vitamin K deficiencies are very common in newly born babies and hence extra effort must be taken to regulate the proper intake of Vitamin K. Some of the sources include: green leafy vegetables, cauliflower, cabbage, fish, eggs, meat, and cereals.
Omega 3 fatty acids
Essential fatty acids can not be produced by the body naturally so needs to be taken with diet or supplements. These are crucial for your infant these improve child’s vision and provisions healthy brain functioning. Moreover, it reduces inflammation, maintains cholesterol levels to make your infant’s heart healthier and stronger. Some of the best sources include flax seeds oil, walnuts, peanut butter, wheat germ oil, fortified egg, salmon, etc.
A small ignorance in the diet of your infant can make a huge difference. So pay attention to include all nutrients at a proper level in the diet of your child for proper nurturing and growth. Don’t give up on the green vegetables and fruits at any cost even if your toddler spit it out or don’t like them at first.
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