Saturday, May 5, 2012

Feeding Baby - 18 months

Fifth post in the series:

By 18 months baby is ready to “help” you make food or bring you things to put in food.  She’ll be a lot more eager to try what she’s helped with!

Grow cherry tomatoes and veggies in a garden that she can plant and help nurture.  Grown an indoor herb garden that she can harvest from and add to meals.

Visit orchards, farmer’s markets, pumpkin patches – places kids can see where food comes from!

As an alternative to water, can brew own jug of decaffeinated unsweetened tea (such as peppermint).

Baby shouldn’t watch TV until at least 2 years old.  Then, don’t allow her to watch TV commercials for food – it will make her want, and usually unhealthy.

Baby will master the spoon and begin to use the fork.  Let her experiment, even if messy!

Always eat meals together as a family, and pull baby’s high chair up to table with everyone else (tons of educational and social benefits have been proven).

Teach her ultimately to eat what the family is eating, not to have her own special meal.

Stock up on seasonal foods when they’re available, then you don’t see them again until next year.  Teaches her to look forward to yummy in season foods.

By 18 months she can digest beans well, so start including them more and in greater quantities.

Take her grocery shopping with you, but make sure she’s rested and fed; when she begs for things, allow her to choose one item.

Always keep a fruit bowl out in plain sight.

Don’t give shellfish before age 2.

By 18 months should not be relying on milk (breast or cow’s) for primary source of nutrition.

Choose organic ketchup with no high fructose corn syrup or chemicals.

By age 2:

Daily requirements haven’t changed except calorie intake goes up to 1000 calories.

Aim for:

2 ounces lean meat/beans

1 cup fruit

1 cup vegetables

3 ounces whole grains

2 cups organic whole milk

Continue multivitamins.

Introduce some sweets to teach to moderate (1 small piece of cake at a birthday party okay, every night is not).  Choose sweets with nutrients (see desserts below).

Strictly forbidding a food makes them want it more.  Don’t keep anything in the house you won’t let her have, and don’t forbid things you keep around, offer them in moderation.

Don’t keep junk food in house, don’t use as a reward, but don’t forbid it once child discovers it – okay if has occasional treat at birthday party, holiday celebration, etc.

By age 2 shoot for 3 – 8 oz. servings of milk per day.

Restrict access to the fridge – we control snacks.

Kids ages 2-8 need 2 hours of physical activity/day.

By age 2 can switch to 2% or skim milk.

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