You have taken utmost care of your diet throughout your pregnancy – you would have followed healthy eating practices, exercised regularly and did everything possible to make sure that your baby is healthy and active inside your womb. Now that your baby is born and has grown to be a naughty little baby, it’s time to even more attentive about his health.
The first few years of your baby’s life are very crucial, as during this stage your baby will be gearing up and gathering strength with growth spurts. During this time you have to make sure your baby is getting the right kind of nutrition to fulfill his everyday requirements. This can also be an overwhelming phase for you as a mother.
Top 30 Nutritious And Healthy Baby Foods:
It is always important to give a balanced diet to your baby with more focus on proteins and fibers. Check out our list of baby foods. These foods are power packed and give your growing baby all the essential nutrients that he requires in the growing years.
Papaya is a great weaning food for your baby as it is easy to swallow and is sweet too. Papayas are rich in vitamin C and beta carotene that help your child get his daily requirement of vitamin C. The soluble fiber in fruit also works in promoting normal bowel function.
An apple a day keeps the doctor away – goes the saying. Apple puree is known to be one of the best weaning foods for babies. Apples are filled with pectin, a powerful soluble fiber, and many other minerals and vitamins that your baby will need as he grows.
[ Read: Apple Puree for Babies ]
Avocados are a rich natural source of unsaturated fats, and are believed to have a fat composition similar to that of breast milk, which is great. Your baby needs a good dose of unsaturated fat required for cognitive function and brain development, so make sure you find ways to sneak in more of avocados in his diet.
Oranges come loaded with vitamin C. They are a great option for an evening snack that you can introduce to your baby. Orange is a great, healthier choice over the bag of chips or a pack of biscuits. Your baby will absolutely love it, thanks to the wonderful flavor. Make sure you choose the fresh variety, though- the canned variety is more likely to be less in nutrients as it is processed and will also contain lots of sugar.
Prunes come rich with fiber and are a great remedy for problems related to bowels and constipation. If you have just introduced solids to your baby, now is the time to add some prunes mixed with other foods like apple mash and cereals.
[ Read: Prune Puree for Babies ]
Bananas are a rich source of carbohydrates that act as a good source of energy for the body. They also have a good fiber content that helps maintain bowel movements, and are soft and easy to chew, which makes them the perfect food for babies. Make sure you choose ripe bananas and mash them before offering them to your baby.
7. Dark Leafy Greens:
Dark leafy greens are another excellent source of powerful nutrients for your baby. They contain high amounts of natural folate and iron, and make for a great addition to most meals. Make sure you pick up kale, spinach, broccoli, chard and collard greens on your next trip to the supermarket.
[ Read: Spinach Recipes for Babies ]
Beans are super nutritious and have antioxidant properties that are 10 times the amount present in that of oranges. What more, they are rich in fiber which helps regulate your baby’s digestive system and keeps him from getting constipated. Beans are also a good natural source of iron, vitamin B and protein. Soaking the beans overnight is a great way to reduce their cooking time.
9. Sweet Potatoes:
Sweet potatoes are one of the many nutritious vegetables that you could introduce to your baby. They are rich in phyto-nutrients and are packed with vitamins A and C. What’s more, they have a natural creamy texture that makes them a great no-fuss food for your little one. Just boil a sweet potato and give it in a mashed form.
Beets are nothing short of super-food for babies. They contain calcium, vitamin A, potassium and fiber which promote healthy development of your baby. Try to purchase fresh beets whenever possible- boiled beets make for a yummy healthy food.
Tomatoes are rich in lycopene, a powerful antioxidant that prevents cancer and heart diseases. Cooked tomatoes in fat are an excellent way to help release its lycopene, so make sure you include this one in most of the food preparations that you whip up.
This one doesn’t come as a surprise- does it? Your child may hate broccoli, but there are tons of reasons why you should add them to your baby’s diet. Broccoli is literally equipped with calcium, folate and fiber, and possesses excellent cancer-fighting properties. Try and include a little broccoli in the home cooked versions of fast foods like pizzas and pastas.
13. Butternut Squash:
Butternut squash is a pleasantly sweet and nutritionally rich food that you must include in your baby’s diet. Look up some cool recipes online to experiment with butternut, and you’ll be pleased at how quickly your child takes to relishing it.
Carrots are a good source of beta carotene that gives them the typical orange color. They also contain vitamin A which helps promote eye health in kids. Cooking carrots brings out their natural sweetness and makes them soft and easily chewy. In fact, carrots are a perfect finger food for your little one.
[ Read: Carrot Puree for Babies ]
Green peas are loaded with vitamin K, a nutrient that works along with calcium and helps promote bone development and health. They are also a good source of antioxidants, folic acid and fiber, which are essential for the overall health and development of the baby. Best of all, green peas are extremely versatile- you can add them to practically anything.
Lentils are an important part of the diet in many parts of the world, and are actually very nutritious and healthy. Their high protein content makes them very essential for your baby’s health. Boiled, well cooked lentils make for a great meal.
17. Chia Seeds:
Chia seeds are packed with antioxidant properties and are believed to have more calcium than whole milk, which is pretty amazing. Chia seeds are also a rich source of omega 3 fatty acids, fiber, magnesium, potassium, iron and protein.
If you are a vegetarian, quinoa is the best source of protein for your baby. It is rich in lysine, which is an amino acid required by the body for tissue repair and growth. Quinoa also contains a good amount of soluble fiber and is rich in nutrients like magnesium, manganese and iron.
[ Read: Benefits of Quinoa for Babies ]
Blueberries are the nutritious power packed food that your child will derive a maximum from. Rich in vitamins A and C and fiber, they are one of the amazing foods that help speed up the nervous system and brain development in kids. Consumption of blueberries is also thought to be helpful in improving the health of the urinary tract.
20. Breast Milk:
There’s probably no competition to this one- breast milk is undoubtedly the best food for baby, and contains almost all nutrients that your little one needs. Plus, it also contains immune-strengthening agents which help guard your baby against a wide range of possible health conditions.
21. Iron Fortified Cereal:
Iron fortified baby cereal is a good food to offer to your baby to ensure proper growth and development. Breast milk doesn’t always contain sufficient amount of iron to meet your baby’s needs, and that’s when this option comes in handy as a supplement. It is also a good way to start and introduce your child to some semi-solid food- make sure you mix it with fruit like pear, peach, apple or banana.
22. Brown Rice:
Don’t just include brown rice in your weight loss diet – it’s actually good for your little baby too. Brown rice is obviously a healthier choice over white rice as it is much less processed and is packed with nutrients like manganese, iron, fiber, B vitamins and essential fatty acids.
Coconuts comprise of medium chain fatty acids that are amazingly helpful for the body and have a composition similar to that of the breast milk. Consumption of coconut is thought to boost digestion, strengthen immunity and balance blood sugar levels. Try to add coconut milk or grated coconut in everyday food preparation for your baby.
Don’t just reserve oats for your everyday breakfast. It turns out, oats could actually be a wonderful power packed food for your baby too. They are a good source of both soluble and insoluble fiber and are packed with phytochemicals, vitamins, selenium, magnesium, iron and zinc, which make them a perfect food for kids. Give your kid a small bowl of plain cooked oats along with some creative toppings of fresh fruits, dried nuts or a drizzle of agave nectar (sweetener).
Yogurt isn’t just good for you (probiotics, anyone?), it’s also healthy for your baby at so many levels. Fresh, plain yogurt is a great source of protein, calcium and vitamin D, the nutrients essential for your baby’s development. Yogurt when mixed with sugar and fruit tastes very similar to an ice-cream, so your kid won’t have a tough time gobbling it down.
Surprised how this one made it to the list. Well, cheese is an excellent source of protein which is an important nutrient needed for the growth and development of your baby. Cheese also contains a healthy dose of vitamin B 12 which helps convert fat, protein and carbohydrates to energy.
[ Read: Cheese Recipes for Babies ]
Eggs are a power food with the best nutrients that your child could get. They contain choline, which is a B vitamin that plays an important role in the development and function of the brain of your baby. Eggs constitute of proteins, omega 3 fatty acids, folate, vitamin D, luetin and many other antioxidants. On top of that, they are also packed with minerals like zinc; iron and selenium which boost the immune system and help prevent your body against many infectious diseases. Sneak in ways to add more eggs to your baby’s food. Make sure that your baby is not allergic to eggs.
Yes, you read that right. It is now time to start introducing small amounts of animal meat to your baby (you may need a doctor’s approval for this one first). Meat is a rich natural source of iron and zinc, both of which are of paramount importance for your baby’s health. Make sure you start with less quantities and cook the meat properly (uncooked animal proteins carry a risk of salmonella infection).
Chicken is one of the best animal proteins you could introduce your baby to – it contains vitamin B6, which helps your baby’s body to get energy on a daily basis. The regular consumption of protein rich foods like chicken is believed to be extremely helpful in supporting growth and development of your baby.
[ Read: Chicken Recipes for Babies ]
If you’re considering introducing your baby to seafood, there could be nothing better than getting started with sardines. They are loaded with essential fatty acids and are rich in protein, calcium and vitamin D. Just make sure you seek your doctor’s opinion before this one as few fish tend to have toxic chemicals that may harm your baby.
We hope you like the list of homemade baby foods discussed above for the healthy, growing years of your little one.
Do share your stories with other mothers at Momjunction!
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