How to choose baby food
Baby food is a special line of products designed for children under three years of age. It is used instead of breast milk if the mother for some reason cannot feed, and for feeding the baby.
- The best manufacturers of baby food
- Types of baby food
- Selection Tips
The best manufacturers of baby food
Baby food should be safe for the baby and not contain dyes, GMOs, preservatives and flavor enhancers. It can include natural products, as well as vitamins, amino acids, nutrients, proteins, “good” bacteria and other beneficial substances. Quality products for children rarely cause allergies, and their composition corresponds to that stated on the package.
The best baby food brands are:
- Nestle (GERBER, NAN, NESTOGEN, Nestle);
- Nutricia (Nutrilon, Baby, Baby).
These brands are known not only in Russia and the CIS, but also in Germany, Austria, the USA, Switzerland, Poland, the Netherlands and other countries.
Among domestic manufacturers, the most popular are:
- JSC “Progress” (Kids and Frutonyanya);
- JSC “VImm-Bill-Dann” (Agusha, Miracle baby).
Types of baby food
Milk mixtures are used from the birth of a child and up to 2-3 years. They completely replace breast milk if the mother cannot feed the baby herself.
Infant formula is designed to resemble mother’s milk in composition. They contain cow, goat or soy milk, as well as vitamins, minerals, vegetable oils, unsaturated fatty acids and other beneficial substances.
Cow’s milk is used in most infant formulas. However, 2-6% of infants are allergic to cow’s milk protein, so they switch to food prepared with goat’s milk or soy. Sometimes children are diagnosed with lactose intolerance and have to eat lactose-free or soy-based formulas.
Soy baby food is not suitable:
- Premature babies who need an increased amount of minerals;
- Babies allergic to soy protein.
If the child suffers from an intestinal disorder, flatulence, colic or other health problems, special therapeutic and prophylactic mixtures should be used. They are suitable for:
- premature babies;
- Allergic kids;
- Infants with colic and unstable stools;
- Children suffering from frequent regurgitation.
In the first year of life, it is recommended to choose milk formulas marked “adapted”, i.e. most similar to mother’s milk in composition. You should also be careful with baby food that contains:
- Palm oil – reduces bone density with frequent use;
- Gluten – can cause intestinal upset or allergies in babies under one year old;
- Sucrose – can lead to the development of an allergic reaction in children in the first year of life. Sometimes causes bloating and colic.
- Milk formula can be given to a child only after consultation with a pediatrician.
Baby cereals can be used for complementary foods from 4-6 months. They are multi-component and single-component.
The first porridge for the baby should be one-component, i.e. consist of one type of cereal. It should not contain:
- gluten free;
- Thickeners (starch) – can lead to flatulence and colic;
- palm oil;
- Salt. Pediatricians do not recommend adding salt to complementary foods for babies under one year old.
For the first feeding, products from buckwheat, rice or corn grits are suitable. Such cereals should not contain milk (this reduces the risk of developing allergies) and sugar, which can cause bloating, gas formation and colic in the baby.
Multicomponent porridge can be used only after all the cereals contained in the product have been introduced into the baby’s menu, and he has not experienced an allergic reaction.
This type of baby food is often used as a first meal for a baby who often has loose stools. If the crumbs have a tendency to constipation, porridge should be introduced into the diet first.
If you will be feeding baby puree for the first time, choose a one-component product that consists of zucchini or cauliflower. These foods are less likely to cause an allergic reaction. When the baby gets used to hypoallergenic vegetables, he can be given carrot or pumpkin baby food.
Pay attention to the content of mashed eggs. This product is a strong allergen, so you should not enter it into the menu of an allergic child.
Juices can be used only after the baby began to eat cereals and mashed potatoes. Choose hypoallergenic products that do not contain:
- artificial flavors;
- artificial dyes.
- Carefully study the composition of baby food. It should not contain GMOs, dyes, flavor and odor enhancers, emulsifiers, etc.
- Buy foods that are appropriate for your baby’s age group.
- Make sure that the packaging is intact, not deformed.
- Choose manufacturers whose products meet international quality standards.
- Before introducing complementary foods to the crumbs menu, consult a pediatrician.
In the following articles, our experts tell you how to choose the right formula for a baby and the secrets of choosing porridge for the first complementary foods and recommendations for choosing a high chair for feeding your baby.
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Attention! This material is the subjective opinion of the authors of the project and is not a purchase guide.