The Baby Food Debate: The Benefits of Homemade Baby Food Over The Jars
Americans have long depended on jarred baby foods for convenient feeding. In the past few years more and more processed food options have entered the children's food market. The big brands have expanded into pre-packaged "toddler meals" and "school lunches" all in the name of helping busy parents who need things to be fast and convenient. Even for those parents with the best effort and intention, there may be times when you just can't make or safely pack your own food. One of my clients had served her eight-month-old homemade, organic baby food from his first bite. However while traveling with her son to England; she brought a few jars of food "just in case" she ran out of fresh items on the flight. Here are some tips for buying commercially jarred foods, when you're in a pinch.
? Opt for those with the most calories, meaning more food per unit weight.
? Look for jars of organic foods, without fillers.
? Check that the expiration date on the jar has not passed.
? Choose foods without chemicals and preservatives.
? If feeding your baby a vegetarian diet, look for the Vegetarian Society's "V" symbol on the jar or container, to be sure it is truly vegetarian.
Benefits of Homemade
Babies usually triple their weight during their first year. If they are what they eat, this is the most important time to give them the best. You may not be able to give your child fresh, homemade foods everyday, but here are the benefits for you and your child when you do make the effort.
Homemade food is more nutritious than commercially prepared baby foods because it retains more of the nutrients, especially vitamin A and B. This is because the food is less processed. The jarring process necessitates the use of very high heat under pressure. Much more than you can generate when cooking at home. Unfortunately, many vitamins are destroyed by heat.
Some of the baby food on the market has additives and thickening agents including cornstarch, flour, chemically modified starches or "tapioca" (corn syrup, starch). This means your baby is getting less fruit and vegetables and more "filler". Consumers are also getting less nutrition and value for your money.
By making your own food, you'll know exactly what your child is eating. You can monitor their diet, and know which vitamins and nutrients are lacking. A study by the San Francisco Chronicle in 2002, reported that over 40% of children's calories come from fast and processed foods. Spend your time making your own food, rather than reading and de-coding labels on processed foods.
No Chemicals or Preservatives
Your food will not have anything added, that you didn't put there. You're not trying to preserve shelf life or disguise any of the ingredients in your food. Preservatives include partially hydrogenated oils or trans-fats, which are linked to diabetes, cancer and heart disease.
While sometimes convenient, a big drawback of commercial baby food is that it bears little relation to the real food. Fresh, seasonal food just tastes better. You probably haven't eaten baby food since you were a baby ? because you don't want or have to. If feeding homemade baby food, your child will appreciate real foods from their first bite. These will be the flavors and food items that they will continue to enjoy as they grow. Jarred baby food is not available in every fruit and vegetable, nor is it seasonal. You may miss the opportunity to introduce fruit and vegetable options, which you want your baby to eat later with the rest of the family. Some children get used to bland, smooth, jarred foods and have difficulty being reintroduced to the same real foods and textures later.
Making food gives you control over quantity, taste, texture and expense. You will not have to throw away partially eaten jars of food. Instead you can cook what you know your baby will eat, prolong the life of your homemade food in the freezer, or eat your child's food yourself.
Create variety from a single, whole food item. When making baked sweet potatoes you can chose to puree some, cut pieces into soft chunks, and leave the rest whole. Because your homemade purees are made with whole foods, the leftovers can be made into soups, side dishes and sauces for the rest of the family. You may doubt that because you've never considered making a delicious soup from a jar of baby food. However many favorite cream soups get their start from humble, fresh purees.
The cost for making your own baby food is often less than buying commercially prepared baby foods, if you shop smart and cook in larger quantities. For instance a four ounce jar of baby food ranges in price from .60 - $1.20 each, depending on brand and place purchased. However when making your own baby food, and following our tips for creating convenience and buying in-season whole foods you can save on the price. I purchased enough apples for an apple puree for $2 at the farmer's market, and my recipe yielded 16 ounces, thus my cost is $.50 per four ounce serving.
Excerpt from The Petit Appetit Cookbook (Penguin March 2005) by Lisa Barnes.
Lisa Barnes is a cookbook author and the owner of Petit Appetit, a cooking service devoted to baby and toddlers. She teaches private and group cooking classes to parents in Northern California who want to provide their children with fresh, healthy, organic foods. Visit http://www.petitappetit.comfor more information and to sign-up for free newsletters.
Home Remedies for Colic
You are at the end of your rope. You have tried everything under the sun to soothe your little one who is still crying non-stop. Your pediatrician gave you the diagnoses of colic and told you the condition would pass. But they have no recommendations for any type of medication. You have talked with friends that have had babies with Colic and tried all of their suggestions, but you are still staying up at night and becoming more frustrated because you can not help your new born baby.
Baby Products ? Essential Baby Products, Which Ones Do I Really Need?
There are many essential baby products a new parent must purchase. Cribs, car seats, baby monitors, baby strollers, high chairs and clothing are all necessary to ensure your child's safety and comfort. However, there are many baby products out there that are not worth wasting your money on, but are marketed to parents as being vital for a baby's growth and development. Parents always want the best for their child and therefore purchase these items that do not serve a great function. This guide reveals the important baby products a parent must obtain to properly care for their child.
Jogging Strollers?How to Get Back in Shape!
Add a little extra push and a jogging stroller to your exercise regime and you'll be back in top condition in no time! As well as single seat, many companies also offer double and triple seat models that are great for twins or toddlers. Jogging strollers come in a wide range of prices depending on the brand and the number and types of features of a particular model.
Healthy Baby Food - When is the Best Time to Start Consuming Juice?
Mother's milk is the best choice for healthy baby food. However, there will be a time when the baby needs much more nutrients as they grow up and mother's milk can not accomplish it anymore. This will be the time your baby needs some soft food from cereal, fruits or vegetables.
The Truth About Baby Bedding
Imagine your little baby in her nursery. So happy in the colorful new home you have prepared for her. Watching the Mobile. Lying down comfortably in her crib.Comfortably in her crib. That depends on the bedding sets you use. Babies have very delicate skin. A baby's skin is so much thinner than adult skin. Some babies are very sensitive to their surroundings.The first thing you have to take into consideration when it comes to baby bedding, is comfort. Will the fabric make baby's skin itch?Ideally, the best fabric to use for baby bedding is cotton. Preferably 100% cotton sheets in summer, soft warm flannel for winter. Wool may be itchy but that depends on the baby.Next, because babies have such sensitive skin, you must keep the crib bedding clean and dry. Babies urine and pass motion frequently in their clothes. If their nappies leak, the bedding gets stained. Disposable diapers are way more convenient as compare to cloth nappies. With cloth nappies, the nappies leak every time the baby urines which can be nightmarish for an exhausted new mother to clean up after. Disposable diapers allow the baby to stay dry after a few rounds of urine, but once baby strains her face and you know she has just moved her bowels, do change her diaper.When baby dirties herself, clean her up right away. Leave her in dirty nappies longer than necessary and she will probably develop a nappy rash. Babies with nappy rash itch, cry a lot and are generally miserable. Keep a tube of diaper rash cream at hand to treat the problem, just in case. You can get these baby products at very affordable prices at Cheapest Sale Baby Products. A vinyl cover over the mattress itself keeps the mattress from getting soaked through. Remember to cover it with clean cotton bedding and to change it whenever it gets dirty. You do not want baby to suffer from skin allergies from dirty bed linen.For safety sake, get baby to sleep face up or on the side. Don't let baby sleep lying on its stomach. A BBC article about cot deaths links cot deaths with the baby sleeping on its stomach. http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/health/520993.stmFinally, since baby is going to spend most of her time in the crib, even while she is awake, give her something to look at. Cotton baby bedding with friendly patterns, little animals, or other interesting pictures keep her occupied, and stimulate her mind. Plain white crib bedding sets without any patterns are really boring. They do not give baby anything to look at. To make matters worse, plain sheets show up stains glaringly. Patterned bedding sets are more forgiving in this aspect. Besides, babies would find pattern bedding more interesting.
Creating Good Feng Shui in Babys Room
Getting ready for a new baby requires a lot of thought and planning from what diapers the baby will wear down to the decoration and arrangement of baby's room. Today's parents want to create a haven for their little one that will help the baby feel comforted and nurtured, as well as stimulated enough so that they thrive. Increasingly, parents are going beyond the traditional coordinated "theme" rooms to ensure baby has a healthy environment by incorporating feng shui.
How to Meet the Dietary Needs of Babies ? Health, Palate, and Lifestyle
More and more studies are proving that food has a large impact on our overall health and may even determine which diseases and ailments we will get later in life. The more we are aware of the importance of our food choices the earlier we can teach and protect our children. Of course there is always a balance to strike between what's good for our body and what's good for our taste buds and lifestyle. Here is a description of the most important nutrients for your child's development and which foods meet their needs.
Have Fun Purchasing A Stroller For Your Baby
You are getting ready to welcome your baby into your life and one of the items you are considering is a stroller. Strollers come in various styles, features and brands. If you have a newborn you want to be sure the seat fully reclines so your newborn can lie flat. Consider what strollers will need assembly once you purchase it. The restraint system on most strollers is the 5 point restraint; two at the shoulders, two at the hips, and one at the crotch. Be sure to use the restraint system as recommended by the manufacturer for your baby's safety.
When to Have a Baby Shower
When to have a baby shower is a personal choice. It can be held anytime 4-6 weeks before or after the birth. Moreover, it can be held any day of the week and at any time of the day that is suitable for the mom-to-be, her family and the invited guests.
Potty Training Readiness Signals - Is Your Child Ready To Be Potty Trained?
So, you are thinking about potty training your toddler and you want to make sure that your child is ready.
Young Child Games-But When Do I Stop Playing Baby Games, You Ask?
As a baby matures and starts to show the first signs of independence the games that you play will change dramatically. The turning point comes as he progresses from crawling to walking. This skill is as important for his development as it is for his proud parents! As a toddler becomes mobile, all of his other skills develop in tandem with this new found ability to get around. There are four major areas for development and these are motor-skills, creativity, mobility and social skills.
Babys First Days at Home
The moment that you have waited for has finally arrived: the day you bring your newborn baby home from the hospital. Like all other expectant parents you will have spent the last nine months preparing for this day. You will have a baby room full of everything a newborn could possibly want. You will have read book after book on a wide magnitude of baby topics from what to name your baby to when you can expect those first words. You will have walked and paced the length of baby's room, imagining your little bundle sleeping peacefully in her crib. Now the moment has arrived. In the crib lies your sleeping baby and the most exciting adventure of life is about to begin.
Aargh those Pesky Sleep Problems!
It's 2am and your baby is up for the third time since 7pm.She's 2 months old and from all the books and magazines you've readSHE'S SUPPOSED TO BE SLEEPING THROUGHT HE NIGHT!!!!!How long can this go on?!!! As difficult as this is it doesn't last forever.
A Surprise Baby Shower Can Be the Perfect Way to Celebrate
Throwing a surprise baby shower doesn't have to be difficult. In fact, it can be fun for all involved. All it takes is a little patience, a few basic steps, and the cooperation of friends and family.
Around 20% of newborn babies suffer from jaundice. The condition is not normally serious and usually clears up after a week or so.What Are The Symptoms?Baby's skin will develop a yellowish tinge and she will look as though she has a suntan. Black babies will have a yellow tinge to the whites of their eyes.What Causes Baby JaundiceBabies are born with a high level of the chemical bilirubin in the blood and it may take a week or so for the liver to break this down. Baby will suffer no pain or discomfort as a result of having this condition.How Is It Diagnosed?The first sign of jaundice is the change in skin tone. A blood sample will then be taken (usually a small sample from baby's heel) and the levels of bilirubin levels are checked.What Is The Treatment?Exposure to sunlight will help break down the chemical. If you are still in hospital, baby will be placed under bright fluorescent lights for set periods; a few days of this treatment is usually sufficient and the yellowish tinge will fade. If you're at home, place baby in as much daylight as possible (without clothing) - but be careful not to expose baby to direct sunlight as she could suffer from sunburn. Breastfeeding will also help (but you were going to breastfeed anyway, right?), and feed on demand so that the chemical clears the system more quickly.What If The Symptoms Persist?If the symptoms persist after two weeks, a rare occurence, it can be a sign of other complications and you should consult your doctor.
10 Items of the Well-Stocked Diaper Bag
Does your diaper bag have everything you need in it? Of course, you have the basic items: diapers, wipes, bottles, etc. But are you equipped for any "baby situation" that could possibly arise? It may seem like a lot of gear, but if you bring along the following baby paraphernalia when you head out, you'll be ready for just about anything.
Playing Baby Computer Games ? The New Parent-Child Tradition?
Imagine cuddling up with your small child to look at a picture book together that is interactive, musical, responsive and talks to you?
Baby Shower for Mom and the Ladies
Baby Shower for Moms who just wanna have fun! This type of baby shower is not the only type of shower given today. Traditionally, baby showers have been thrown for mommy-to-be and the guest list was strictly women.
Most Important Decision of a Lifetime - What to Name Your Baby
Most people don't know the meaning of their name, but most names do have meanings. You should at least find out the meanings of your favorite choices before giving one of them to your child. The meaning of your child's name probably won't greatly affect his or her life, but may help you to make a decision between your favorites.
Wooden High Chairs Offer Simplicity, Beauty, and Practicality for Todays Busy Families
Wooden high chairs with their looks and functionality make a great addition to any kitchen or dining room, no more plastic, teddy bears or bright colors, so no more hiding your high chair.