Feeding Baby

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Cynthia Epps, an infant feeding specialist, discusses infant nutrition. She advocates making baby food at home and says that it doesn’t have to be as labor intensive as it sounds. Cynthia mentions two organic babyfood companies Bohemian Baby and Homemade Baby.

Cynthia has provided the following timetable:

Food Variety - Timetable

6 to 8 months
Peas, sweet potatoes, yams, summer squash, Yukon gold potatoes, red creamers
Commercially prepared baby carrots and green beans (to avoid nitrates)
Apple, bananas, pear, prune - purees
Any commercially prepared Stage 1 baby foods (read the labels to avoid added sugar)
Iron fortified baby rice cereal, then baby barley and/or oatmeal cereals.

8-10 months
Plain, unsweetened breakfast cereals - oatmeal, cream of rice
Oatios, Cherrios, Rice flakes    (aim to start wheat breads/pastas after 10 mos)
Soft cooked rice, and/or pastas (wheat-free)
Plum, peach, kiwi, mango, papaya
Ripe, mashed avocados

Fresh vegetables: snow peas, zucchini, asparagus, broccoli, cauliflower, and potatoes. Spinach, beets, green beans, winter squash, turnips, carrots, and collard greens should not be home prepared before 9 months due to the possibility of high nitrates.  After 9 months, these foods may be steamed, pureed or offered in small soft pieces as part of a complete meal. These vegetables may be served at 8 months as commercially prepared Stage 2 baby foods (read the labels to avoid dairy).

Pureed meats, lean beef, chicken, turkey, lamb, and/or tofu
Egg yolks, only (hard boiled or scrambled without the whites)

10 to 12 months
Small, thin strips of raw fruits, such as apple or pear; chunks of watermelon, cantaloupe, melons, blueberries (mashed), pineapple
Tiny strips of soft steamed vegetables - red/green/yellow peppers, cucumbers, lettuce
Crackers, pasta, bread and bagels (wheat)
Small pieces of well cooked meats (shredded)
Beans – (one at a time, break the skin)
Goat’s milk, Soy milk, Rice milk; goat and soy yogurts/cheeses

Foods to avoid until after 12 months:
Oranges, grapefruits, strawberries, tomatoes (citrus family); egg whites
Whole cow’s milk yogurts/cheeses. Added salt or sugar, MSG, heavy seasonings
Chocolate and whole nuts - avoid peanuts and peanut butter until child is three years old
Fish and shellfish – shark, swordfish, fresh or canned tuna, king mackerel, tilefish, lake trout,  bass, and crabs due to high levels or mercury and/or toxic chemical contamination.

Please note: if your child experiences cold symptoms after introducing any dairy foods, remove the dairy foods until after 12-14 months, then offer a serving and wait three days before offering again.

Cynthia Epps, MS, IBCLC
Board Certified Lactation Consultant
Metabolic Nutritionist
Infant Feeding Specialist
(310) 458-6430

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