- Vitamin D
- Calcium, magnesium and other minerals
- Essential fatty acids - DHA
Following a varied diet, including herbs and spices, different tastes such as olives and a combination of sweet and savoury meals will also help develop oral tolerance in the baby. The breast milk changes flavour daily, depending on what the mother eats. Exposure to these different flavours may help avoid having fussy eaters as the child becomes a toddler and older.
Foods that help nourish a newly breastfeeding mother and baby:
- Ginger – helps to ease indigestion in mother, and colic and wind in baby.
- Easy to digest meals for the period straight after birth up to 3 months – soups, slow cooked stews, fish, tender pork or chicken with lots of different coloured vegetables. Use ginger and sesame oil in cooking, as well as other warming spices and herbs such as cinnamon and turmeric to aid digestion and nourishment.
- Wholegrains and stewed fruits are also nourishing and offer lots of vitamins and minerals. Creamy Oat porridge with stewed apples for example.
- Chamomile, fennel, lemon balm or peppermint teas are also excellent for helping the digestive process of both mum and bub. Remember baby gets the beneficial properties of these via the breast milk.
- Make the foods warming and nourishing as much as possible. Healthy fats are very important at this stage. Use coconut oil, olive oil, organic butter and ghee in cooking.
- Iodine is an essential nutrient for young babies to ensure their brains develop properly. It can be added into mum’s diet by using kelp granules or seaweed strips in cooking, as well as fresh seafood.
- Water is also of utmost importance. A minimum of 2 litres daily, preferable up to 3 litres to protect from dehydration, and encourage milk production.
Under 4 months – Bottle Fed
Some mothers are unable to breast feed, so formula feeding may be the next option. Many babies will have issues with digesting formula milks, so the best formula for your baby is the one that he can keep down without discomfort. Formula milk is not a complete food like human breast milk, and so will lack key immunological features. We can help combat this by adding things into the formula that will increase its nutritional content.
To a formula feed we can add-
- ¼ to ½ tsp fermented cod liver oil
- ½ tsp probiotic specifically designed for baby
These additions will help protect babies immune system and nourish his rapidly growing brain and cells.
As the baby gets older (over 4 months) we can add things like coconut oil and organic liver to the formula to replace essential fats that are found in breast milk. This is something to discuss with your naturopath or health care provider as required.
There are also home-made formula options available if this is something that interests you. They are nutritionally replete, offering baby the essential nutrients he needs before going on to solids.
All newborn babies, whether breast or bottle fed, will need to nurse 8 to 12 times daily. This equates to every 2 to 4 hours, in order to ensure adequate nutrition.
Newborn and child nutrition and development is a fascinating area, and I hope you guys have enjoyed reading today's post. If there is anything particular you would like to know in regards to Nourishing your little ones, please let me know!
Love and Light
Alysia Chick xx