22 September 2018

Does baby need Vitamin D ?


Vitamin D is one of the quintessential vitamin not only for adults but also for babies as well .Babies need Vitamin D for a healthy growth and overall well being.

As per the well known researcher Michael F. Holick, Professor of medicine, Physiology, and Biophysics at Boston University School of Medicine , Vitamin D deficiency can not only cause rickets (a disease that can lead to bone deformity and fractures), it can also keep a child from reaching her genetically programmed height and peak bone mass  ~ Babycenter.com

What are the health benefits of Vitamin D for babies and adults ?


Did you know that,though breast milk is consider the elixir,all-in-one nutrition for baby ,it typically doesn't have enough Vitamin D necessary for an infant's overall development and so a baby may require supplements prescribed by the doctor.On the other hand ,most of the infant formula milks are already fortified with enough Vitamin D ,that any further supplement (medicines) are unnecessary . 

How to get Vitamin D ?

  1. Sunlight -Vitamin D is also called "the sunshine" vitamin as Vitamin D is naturally created by skin when directly exposed to sun .However,the harmful effects of Ultra violet radiation can also cause skin cancer ,making it tricky .Moreover,in babies because of the clothing and sunscreen sunlight effects are minimal and hardly helps in creating Vitamin D .
  2. Foods - Most of the formula milks are fortified with enough Vitamin D  for the baby.Mothers who took enough Vitamin D during pregnancy ,may forward it to the baby after birth  via breast milk but they may or may not meet baby's need and may require additional supplements .As a baby gets older and on solid food ,including  food items rich with Vitamin D will be helpful.
  3. Vitamin Supplements - For adults ,many Vitamin D tablets are available in the medical store or as advised and prescribed by the doctor.Babies with Vitamin D deficiency are prescribed Vitamin D in liquid form ,easy to swallow ,using a dropper .As per FDA,the baby should be given the exact amount as prescribed by the doctor using the dropper that came with the medicine and it should not exceed the dose in any way ,which may otherwise be harmful to the baby .

How much Vitamin D the baby / child needs ?

According to the American Academy of Pediatrics ,all infants,older kids,teens should  take Vitamin D supplements of 400 IU each day unless otherwise advised/prescribed by the doctor.

What are the best sources of food that contain Vitamin D ?


I remember, when I was struggling hard with breast feeding my baby properly after she was born and when I visited India with my baby,after lots of trials and guilt trips,I finally decided (with doctor's suggestion and assurance) relied upon the infant formula milk completely to feed my baby .

In US and in India,I was interrogated , belittled ,judged by many "women" (people I know well) for that as if I was committing a sin and I was lectured that there is nothing like breast milk ,it has everyyyything and I knew a few women who completely breast fed their babies ,(those babies) were always sick and by God's grace ,my baby was doing well (touchwood!)…

I do agree there is nothing good like the natural breast milk for the baby but it also has its own cons -Breast milk doesn't have enough vitamin D,iron etc  but infant formula has ...so,all those breastfeeding moms cut some slack ,sometimes even mother's love will be enough to make a baby thrive happily and healthily and mothers who give infant formula to their baby,"If you can't breastfeed your baby and you have switched to infant formulas ,don't worry,be happy,you are doing your best for your child ,rest leave to God,he will take care of rest with blessings "...😊

Anyways,I always wanted to write in my blog all about Vitamin D as Vitamin D is one of the unavoidable vitamin for adults as well and Vitamin D deficiency is quite common among adults nowadays and it causes lots of health issues if not restored sooner .So,when it comes to baby,we want to give them the best jumpstart to a good health and Vitamin D is one of the most essential vitamin a baby must have .Now,I am relieved as I finally have the complete list of the Vitamin D food items for referral.

So,this is for my little sunshine ,so that she may shine bright always (AMEN!)

DISCLAIMER:This article/blogpost is for informational purpose only and are not intended to offer any personal medical advice. 

  1. Vitamin D in child's diet
  2. Does my baby need a Vitamin D supplement ?
  3. Babies may get too much vitamin D from dropper
  4. Breast fed babies still need extra vitamin D
  5. Vitamin D for infants
  6. Sources of vitamin D

30 August 2018

Is fish a good food for babies?


"Omega-3's are the head-to-toe nutrient because they're good for nearly every organ of a child's body, from the brain to the skin. Most parents, however, are unsure about feeding their babies fish, which is the richest source of DHA, the healthiest type of omega-3 fatty acid for infants." ~ Dr.William Sears, M.D. via Parenting.com

Fish is a super nutritious food for baby and adults.However,they are also prone to mercury contamination etc ,making them scary, skeptical and risky to consume wholeheartedly especially when it comes to feeding a baby .

RISK - What exactly is mercury contamination in fish ?

The industrial garbage,agricultural wastes,storm water run off etc release mercury products or similar deadly contaminants into the water bodies like river,streams,sea etc which is then consumed by the marine animals and then they get contaminated especially with Methyl Mercury .Methyl Mercury is toxic for fetuses and especially for young children leading to developmental problems .

BENEFITS - What are the benefits of consuming a fish ?

  • Fish is low in saturated fat and a good source of high protein,vitamins ,minerals ,Omega 3 fatty acids (docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) ) and some fish may also provide Vitamin D, making it an excellent food for brain,heart and overall health .
  • Omega 3 (DHA) aids in neurological and visual developments in infants making them brighter,smarter and happier .
  • Improves the immune system of the baby.
  • Keeps skin allergies at bay - Omega 3's decreases the inflammation in all parts of the body ,prevents any skin allergy flare ups and ease asthma symptoms as well .
According to an article published in mercola.com ,"Omega-3 deficiency is likely the sixth biggest killer of Americans, and may be a significant underlying factor of up to 96,000 premature deaths each year."

How to avoid the risk and achieve the benefits, the fish has to offer ?

There are plant based Omega 3s but they can never replace the effectiveness of animal based Omega 3s .So, according to recent studies and medical experts advise ,Fish is an ideal food that cannot be avoided .Trick is to go for fish that falls into the category of low mercury level .

What are those fish that are low or high in mercury level ?

Here is an apt pictorial representation straight from FDA AS IT IS in their website for a credible referral .(The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is an agency of the United States Department of Health and Human Services responsible for protecting and promoting public health.

Picture Credit : FDA

When can we start feeding the baby fish ?

Dr.William Sears mentioned in the article in Parenting.com ,that baby can start on fish except the shellfish right from 6 months of age . 

And as mentioned in the Babycenter.com,fish is one of the top allergenic food and if a baby has chronic eczema or a food allergy or allergy runs in the family,discuss with your baby's doctor first.As with any new food ,offer fish for 3-5 days to rule out any allergy symptoms  like facial swelling,skin rash,wheezing,vomiting,diarrhea,abdominal cramping etc .

How much fish baby should eat ?

Baby (less than 6 years of age) should eat 2-6 Oz of fish per week .

Other points to remember while offering fish to baby are :

  • Fresh fish is the best.
  • Fish should be cooked well to destroy bacteria and viruses that thrive in raw or undercooked fish.
  • To prevent choking,fish should be boneless,skinless,minced and pureed.
  • Smaller fish have few contaminants.
  • Cut off the fatty parts of the fish which collects contaminants like PCBs .However,mercury cannot be removed like this as it is stored in  the muscle tissue of the fish.
    Picture Credit :Washington State Depatment of health

Old studies Vs New studies of serving fish to baby

According to the old studies fish were advised by medical experts to be given to babies after 1 year of age to prevent any allergy.

According to the new research,fish can be introduced as soon as 4-6 months whenever baby is introduced to solid food ,it ensures any future fish allergy and also makes baby more open to different kinds of foods with ease.

I gave my baby right from 7 months and by God's grace and her grace of course,she accepted it wholeheartedly without any fuss so far (Touchwood!!) and the fish I trust and love to give her is Salmon as it is not only the best source of Omega3s but also provides Vitamin D.I was skeptical as I personally don't like the taste of the salmon but my baby is kind and cooperative so far(Touchwood again!) 😀

I was also very confused with the varieties of fish with low level mercury level that can be given to baby aptly and now I finally have the list here to refer properly.:)

So,yes there is something fishy about them (fish) but then personally,I believe hardly anything in today's era is not adulterated or contaminated .It's a tricky world out there ,we have to use our brain and heart to make the smart choice about everything ..and when it comes to baby,we have to be extra cautious because what an adult body can handle (foods etc) ,a baby's immature or developing digestive system or body may not and even be harmful .

However, inspite of the dark sides ,we have to look at the bright side and make the right decisions as much as possible that would ensure baby is still getting all the essential nutrition properly to the best of our ability . 

So,say yes to fish (with big heart and low mercury !) 😊

Cheers to a brainy healthy baby !! AMEN!

DISCLAIMER:This article/blogpost is for informational purpose only and are not intended to offer any personal medical advice. Please seek and follow the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions/concerns you may have regarding a medical condition .


16 August 2018

Iron rich foods for babies during their first year

Iron is an quintessential nutrient required by the baby for proper growth ,overall health and development.Iron makes haemoglobin,an important component of red blood cells that supplies oxygen throughout the body.

Insufficient iron in the body makes the red blood cells small and pale ,leading to iron deficiency disease called anemia .According to medical experts,a baby may experience cognitive and behavioral issues if she/he has low iron in their body.

What are the symptoms of iron deficiency in babies?

  • Less physically active and slow growth.
  • Pale skin
  • Slow weight gain
  • No appetite
  • Irritability 
  • Shortness of breath
  • Unusual cravings for non-nutritive things like dirt,starch etc
  • Behavioral problems
  • Weak immune system

How much iron do babies and children need ?


How can iron deficiency be prevented ?

Up until 4-6 months of age,a full term healthy baby gets the necessary iron from the breastmilk or iron-fortified infant formulas. After 6 months of age,baby must derive iron from the solid food and or as advised by the doctor ,must take the prescribed iron supplement .Needless to say,,it is very important to feed a baby with iron rich foods .

Between 1-5 years of age,babies and kids must not take milk more than 24 oz in a day or it may lead to iron deficiency.

It is recommended by medical experts to pair the iron rich food with a Vitamin C enriched food for the apt and maximum absorption of iron in the body.

What are foods rich in iron ?

Two types of dietary iron are there :
  • Heme iron - A type of iron that comes from animal proteins - meat,fish,seafoods etc that is mostly and easily absorbed by the body.
  • Nonheme iron - A type of iron that comes from plants like vegetables,fruits,nuts,seeds,grains,beans etc and eggs and dairy.

What are foods rich in Vitamin C to increase iron absorption in the human body or for here ,let's say,baby?


The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that all infants be tested for iron deficiency anemia starting between ages 9 months and 12 months and, for those who have risk factors for iron deficiency, again at later ages. ~ Mayoclinic.org

Recently,my baby had screening for iron level.She was doing well there by God's grace .However,I didn't know much about the importance of iron for a baby and only knew a few foods rich in iron .So, to enhance my knowledge regarding the same,I gathered all these information to guide me always.So,that I can prepare more nutritious food for my munchkin aptly enriched with iron that will keep her fit and hit by God''s grace .


DISCLAIMER:This article/blogpost is for informational purpose only and are not intended to offer any personal medical advice. Please seek and follow the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions/concerns you may have regarding a medical condition .


25 July 2018

Himalayan Pink salt - the healthy salt for making homemade foods for baby


As a mother,we want to give our child not only the nutritious food but also a delicious one as much as possible .When it comes to a baby,like I mentioned in my previous posts there are foods that must be avoided and one among them is salt.Now we as an adult can't even imagine eating our food without salt.Salt makes food more tasty and flavorful.Then ,while making homemade baby food ,how can we avoid this main ingredient - the salt and give the baby a bland food .Are you one of those mom ? Well, I am !!

I remember ,my mother told me to avoid salt or perhaps she feared I may add it somehow,so advised me to add juuust a pinch of salt if I wish .So, as always I was doing my online research - why we should avoid adding salt to homemade baby food and came to know since baby's taste bud is still developing, it really doesn't matter whether we add salt or not and also about the ill effects of the refined salt/table salt and then also bumped into an alternative miracle healthy salt ,the Himalayan Pink Salt .

I must say the Himalayan pink salt did stole my heart ! Wanna know why ? Here we go -

What is Himalayan Pink salt ?

Himalayan pink salt is one of the most beneficial and purest form of salt available in our planet .Himalayan pink salt got its beautiful natural pink tone because of its higher iron content plus other 84 trace minerals like calcium,magnesium,copper,potassium etc to name a few,making it one of the most healthy and sought after salt .

Himalayan Pink salt is hand mined in one of the oldest mine,the Khewra mine in Punjab,Pakistan ,situated in the foothills of Himalayan mountain terrain (about 5000 deep) where it is popularly regarded as the "White gold" .

Did you Know ?

Himalayan Pink salt is as old as our planet Earth.As a matter of fact,Himalayan pink salt was formed from marine fossil deposits over 200 million years ago .This salt remained buried under ice for ages and so remained un affected by any kind of pollution .The salt is unrefined,un-processed and hand mined to preserve its rich mineral contents .Not to mention,Himalayan pink salt is one of the purest enriched salt far better than the regular table salt we use everyday.

What are the differences between table salt & the Himalayan Pink salt ?


However,it is also claimed that the mineral contents in the Himalayan pink salt is very small and will not provide immense health benefits.Neverthless,I believe it is still far better than the table salt as it is chemical free,naturally enriched and so is healthy .

I am already using the Himalayan Pink salt for making my baby food (just a pinch though) but now onwards, I am going to use this pink salt for my overall cooking as well.So,if you wanna use salt in your baby food gradually,then the Himalayan pink salt is a safer and better alternative I believe.

Old is gold after all !!

Disclaimer : This is only for informational purpose .

References :

30 June 2018

15 foods to avoid for a baby

Model Credit : My DKP :)..Thank You senorita!:)

When babies are introduced to solids for the first time ,it's an interesting milestone, both for baby and the mother and there starts a wonderful edible story of different tastes and textures .As a mother,we would love to feed our baby every edible thing that sounds healthy to us (I was that ,though my child's doc busted my bubble with the right piece of advises ) .

Like the saying "All that glitters are not gold " ,when it comes to solid foods for baby,not every edible food items may be really healthy and there are many foods that must be avoided to prevent the baby from any illness or a life threat.

Below are the foods to be avoided for babies :
  1. Cow's milk - are hard to digest for babies under 1 year and they don't have all the necessary nutrients like Iron,Vitamin E etc that only breast milk or Infant formula can provide .After 1 year ,"pasteurized" milk are suggested by doctor for feeding the toddler .However by 8 months of age,yogurt,cottage cheese,hard cheese etc are considered fine for baby's consumption since it is easy to digest comparatively to milk ,yet can be equally nutritious.Also,like some grown ups, even babies may have some allergic reaction to the proteins in milk .So,that should also be taken into consideration and discussed with the child's doctor as well.
  2. Honey - contains spores of the bacteria,clostridium Botulinm and it is one of the most toxin (neuro toxin) substance known .Honey is harmless to adults but when it comes to infants under 1 year ,it can be harmful and may create a fatal disease called,Botulism . It may lead to poor appetitie,constipation,lethargy,weakened cry over the next several days,weakened gagging and sucking reflex,lose of previous head control,child moving less and drooling etc etc.It may take even months to recover or may even be life threatening .So,no matter how natural and authentic honey is,it is best to avoid even a tad to babies under 1 year .
  3. Refined Sugar - lacks any nutritional value and it may lead to early tooth decay,eating disorders like more preference to sugary taste ,wrong foods choices in future ,leading to obesity and other health conditions.Instead breasts milk or formula and any sweet fruits like Banana ,Apple etc should be used to sweeten foods if needed .
  4. Refined Salt - very small amount of Sodium Chloride ,the mineral in salt is nutritional for baby ,which keeps the body fluid balanced and helps in the digestion of food.Before 6 months, a baby gets this requirement from breast milk or formula.After this ,the solid food will fulfill the requirement.Before 12 months,the baby's kidney is immature to process the salt and too much salt may lead to permanent damage or wrong eating patterns and food choices in future, leading to unhealthy problems.So,it is advised to use herbs to compensate salt and instead of ready made foods which may be loaded with sodium, make fresh homely foods and use salt barely minimum.
  5. Vegetables with high nitrates - Vegetables like Spinach,Carrots,Beets,Collards,Fennel,Lettuce etc contain high nitrate level and babies under 1 year's digestive system may not be strong enough to process it ,which may block blood's ability to transport oxygen ,leading to low oxygen level called the blue baby syndrome.
  6. Fruits like berries and citrus - Strawberry,blueberry,raspberry,blackberry contains a protein that may be hard to digest for babies and even toddlers.Similarly,citrus foods are highly acidic that may cause upset stomach and rashes in diaper area and even on baby's face or back.
  7. Eggs- Egg whites can trigger allergy .However,doctors now advise to feed whole eggs by age six months itself to prevent allergy in future .However,the eggs shouldn't be raw and should be completely cooked .
  8. Soft foods - like jellies,marshmallows,gummy candies, like wise should not be given as they can be a choking hazard for babies.
  9. Hard Foods - Hard candies,nuts,dry fruits,popcorns can also cause choking problems in babies.
  10. Sticky foods - like  jellies,dry fruits,chewing gum,melted cheese ,peanut or other similar butters can also cause choking issues. However,Peanut and other similar butters can be thinned with water or applesauce for baby's consumption .
  11. Low fat foods -Babies need whole fat foods which helps in proper growth and brain development and over all well being.So,low fat foods are not suitable for babies especially under two.
  12. Trans Fats - found in processed foods,baked goods,chips,cookies etc are unhealthy choices and must be avoided.
  13. Fruit juice - should be 100% juice if it is store bought and pasteurized. However, too much fruit juice can lead to tooth decay,diarrhea and other stomach issues.Instead ,whole fruit is the apt choice.
  14. Fish - Avoid fish with high mercury levels and from contaminated waters.Shellfish should also be avoided till 12 months and in cases like severe allergy running in the family,the wait time is 3 years.Shellfish can create some serious allergy especially if it runs in the family.Shellfish should be consumed by baby after the doctor's approval only.
  15. Other foods with choking hazard - Raw vegetables,uncooked raisins,fruits,Hot Dogs,chunks of meat or any non-vegetarian items are also dangerous for baby to swallow properly.
Other foods not mentioned in the above list may also be unsafe in terms of allergy especially if it runs in the family as some babies will be extra sensitive to a particular food and others may not. So,well,we have to be alert to make sure none of the food baby eats possess any threat to his/her health  as well and must be discussed with the child's doctor as to how to proceed further safely.

So,next time that loving relative or a friend with good intention ,would suggest any food from the above list or anything per se,please make sure first that particular food is indeed safe for the baby. Because we all don't know everything , the actual science behind that and every baby may react to foods differently ,like,even if someone has ten babies, most probably ,ten babies would have different likes and dislikes and may be sensitive to different foods respectively.

Ok,did I scare you or made you uncomfortable ? 😯

No worries, I don't mean to!😊...Actually,I am still very scared for my baby ,it is natural I believe but with the right information and resources we can equip our self to face our fears and do the right thing and take the right action as required.

Like they say,"Prevention is better than cure!"

Rest let God guide us to do our best to take care of the gift from God - the baby !

Cheers to every caring mother and to a healthy baby!

Disclaimer:This is for informational purpose only .Always consult with your child's physician regarding any question or concern about solid foods or more and do make sure any food is not allergic to your child .


14 June 2018

Best foods for baby that are easy to digest

Model Credit : DKP :)
Babies are fragile little cutie beauty beings.They develop month by month in and out .I know right, we parents especially mothers are checking everyday how well they are growing like in my mother tongue,Malayalam, we say"Kai vallanno,kaal vallano" meaning did baby's hand and legs grow or not .

It takes a year for a baby's digestive system to mature and it is still very sensitive .So,when solid foods are introduced to a baby whether it's at 4 month or six month,mothers have to be very careful as to what kind of foods to introduce and continue depending upon, whether the food is easily digestible or  the food causes gas,allergy or other stomach related issues and then weed them out.

In my case, I was really concerned , careful and confused because I was worried if the food I give at the tender age of 4 months to my baby will be gentle to my baby's stomach or not .I was scared to mess with that.I was referring to my Baby's doc's information in paper and at times I did my research online but I didn't get enough time to do that as well...Today my baby is going to be 13 months old ,but still I am very careful to make food in such a way that it is easy to digest and nutritious for her .

So,instead of researching online always I have gathered information as to what kind of foods are easy to digest or gentle on a baby's digestive system .

Here are the best food  for baby that are safe and "go to" to help with digestion and good health :

Best Vegetables for babies :

Photo Credit:en.wikipedia.org

Photo Credit:Dishmaps.com

Photo credit:istockphoto.com

1.Butternut Squash - is full of antioxidant,fiber and vitamins .It is easy to digest for infants and hardly cause any allergy .It improves the immune system,it's beta carotene content provides good eye sight,has anti-microbial properties,has anthelmetic properties meaning it controls the worm issues in infants .Once cooked it has a smooth texture which is easy to eat for babies as well.

2.Sweet Potatoes - are full of Vitamin C,D,B6 and is a good source of iron,potassium,magnesium and supports a healthy immune system and full of fiber.Once cooked it is also soft and easy to eat and digest for babies.

3.Broccoli - is full of fiber and helps in digestion,prevents from any allergic reactions,has iron,boosts immunity ,prevents chronic diseases etc.Broccoli should be best steamed than boiled as it loses its vitamin C content otherwise.

4.Parsnip - is full of fiber, protein, anti-oxidants, minerals, iron,magnesium,potassium etc.Parsnips helps with digestion ,good immune system and overall growth.


5.Zucchini - is also full of fiber,antioxidants,other nutrients .It's skin is also healthy to eat. 

Photo Credit:Delmonte.ph

6.Potatoes - are easy to digest ,nutritious and filling. 

Photo Credit:SpecialityProduce.com
7. Eggplant - is very nutritious for baby as it has folate,Vitamin A,Vitamin C and fiber .Eggplant is best introduced at the age of 8 months.It helps in having regular bowel movements in babies .Small eggplants are less bitter and should be peeled and cooked .

Photo Credit : Onlyfoods.net
8.Carrots - are easy to swallow and digest ,plus it is sweet in taste and full of health benefits like it's good for eyes ,immune system .However, because of a chemical ,nitrate, it is best to introduce carrots from 6 months onwards ,though store bought carrot baby food for babies younger than 6 months is considered safe.

Photo Credit -BabyGourmet.com

9.Peas - are sweet to taste and relieves constipation in babies.

Photo Credit :Bbayment.com
10.Green Beans - are full of Vitamin A ,fiber,boosts immune system .

Those were some vegetables that's good and safe for babies to avoid any digestion problem .Now its turn for the fruits ..

Best fruits for babies :

1. Apple - Apple puree/Apple sauce is very easy to digest , builds immune system and relieves any constipation.

2.Bananas- Bananas are also easy to swallow and digest.They are good for diarrhea and constipation.

3.Pears hardly produce any allergy and are full of fiber,Vitamin C,potassium.

4.Peaches are very sweet,soft and full of Vitamin C.

5.Papaya is good for digestion,kills intestinal worms,relieves constipation etc .

6.Apricots are high in Vitamin A and C and full of fiber.

7.Blueberries are full of fiber,vitamins and antioxidants and best given around 8 months of age.

8.Cantaloupe are best introduced around 10 months .It is full of vitamin C,Vitamin A,Beta carotene etc.



Other than these,

1.Rice is gluten free and doesn't cause any allergy like a possibility in wheat,oatsbarley etc.It is also filling .

2.Meats provide enough iron .Breast milk doesn't produce any iron and baby's iron content in the body starts depleting by age 6 months.

3.Fish provides Omega 3 fatty acids  that is good for brain development,immunity development,vision,mood and overall health.However babies should avoid shellfish and eat only mercury free fish like salmon etc.

4.Yogurt provides probiotics that helps in the smooth functioning of the digestive system like prevents diarrhea,boosts immunity,strong bones,vision and brain development to name a few.

5.Lentils are a good source of proteins ,vitamins and minerals which should be given from 8 months onwards .Some lentils can cause gas but a few like yellow mung beans are easy to digest when cooked and mashed.

So these are some apt food for baby that will give some peace of mind to us and the baby ,now all you have to do (you might be already like myself) is roll your sleeves ,get into your kitchen and cook some delish homemade baby foods for the apple, pears, bananas of your eyes - your adorable baby..😍

Like Julia Child said," You don't have to cook fancy or complicated masterpieces just good food from fresh ingredients." .... 

Disclaimer:This is for informational purpose only .Always consult with your child's physician regarding any question or concern about solid foods or more and do make sure any food is not allergic to your child .

References :