Weight Loss

Selfmade or store-bought child meals: Which ought to mother and father select?

By Rima Kandalaft, CHOC medical dietician

Mother and father, after all, wish to select the perfect meals to feed their infants. There are various wholesome store-bought choices like natural child meals. Another choice is do-it-yourself child meals. Think about the next for every choice that will help you resolve what’s finest for your loved ones:

Selfmade child meals:

  • Might be cheaper.
  • Affords extra management of the components that go into your child’s meals.
  • Offers extra decisions of flavors and skill to include household favourite meals.

Nonetheless, do-it-yourself child meals might also take extra time to organize and safely retailer.

A small meals processor or immersion blender is useful for pureeing the meals. You may as well save time by cooking in batches. Freeze the ready batch in ice dice trays after which retailer it in clear freezer luggage — and ensure to label the kind of meals and date ready.

Retailer-bought child meals:

  • Might be dearer.
  • Is extra handy and simpler to hold when on the go.
  • Components and meals combos are restricted by producers selection.

Kids beneath 5 years of age are at elevated danger of foodborne sickness. Use this desk from foodsafety.gov as a information to soundly put together and retailer child meals for the really helpful period of time within the fridge or freezer. For extra data, learn their article, “Folks at Threat: Kids Beneath 5.”

Purees and Solids (opened or freshly made) Fridge Freezer
Strained vegetables and fruit 2 to three days 6 to eight months
Strained meats and eggs 1 day 1 to 2 months
Meat/vegetable combos 1 to 2 days 1 to 2 months
Selfmade child meals 1 to 2 days 1 to 2 months

With the professionals and cons of do-it-yourself and store-bought child meals, the best choice could also be a mix of each. Make use of the comfort of store-bought jars of child meals when on the go and let your child take pleasure in do-it-yourself child meals the remainder of the time.

Child’s first meals

The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommends unique breastfeeding for infants throughout their first six months of age. Child meals might be launched at about six months of age relying on when child is developmentally prepared. Cues for readiness embrace child’s potential to take a seat with good head management, exhibiting curiosity in meals and opening their mouth when meals is obtainable.

It is strongly recommended to introduce one new meals at a time each 2-3 days whereas waiting for any allergic reactions. One other new meals can then be launched, after which you’ll be able to attempt a mix of meals child has already loved.

A typical first meals is child cereal. Begin with single-ingredient cereal equivalent to rice, oatmeal or barley. Breastmilk is low in iron and the iron shops {that a} child is born with turn out to be depleted at about 4 to six months of age. Iron-fortified cereal, in addition to meats, are vital first meals for breastfed infants since they supply supply of iron.

As child’s meals repertoire expands over the following few months, goal for selection, coloration and texture. Listed here are some ideas to bear in mind:

  • Provide mushy, pureed meals. Keep away from meals that may pose a choking hazard equivalent to grapes and hotdogs.
  • Don’t give honey or cereal sweetened with honey to infants beneath 12 months of age, as a result of danger of botulism.
  • Since juice is excessive in sugar and low in vitamins — and may predispose to weight problems — provide fruit puree as a substitute.
  • It might take as much as 8-10 tries of providing a brand new meals earlier than child accepts it.

Keep in mind to at all times feed with love and use these early feeding levels to instill good consuming habits from the start!

For extra on CHOC’s medical vitamin program


Journalist specialized in online marketing as Social Media Manager. I help professionals and companies to become more Internet and online reputation, which allows to give life to the Social Media Strategies defined for the Company, and thus immortalize brands, products and services. I have participated as an exhibitor in various forums nationally and internationally, I am the author of several articles in digital magazines and Blogs.

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