Research shows that breastfeeding a baby is very important as it helps the child as well as the mother, to be healthier. Research has shown that breast feeding infants exclusively for the first six months, then gradually adding food staples to their diet for the next two or three yrs before completely weaning them off the breast will aid in the prevention of many ailments and diseases.
If there is difficulty for whatever reason on the part of the mother or child that prevents breastfeeding, the mother may still be able to provide the breast milk by way of a breast pump. Breast pumps allow the mother to extract the breast milk and then it can be used right away or stored. Breast milk can be left at room temperature for up to 6 hours as long as it isn’t exposed to sun or heat sources.
Breast milk may also be stored in the refrigerator for up to four days or frozen for up to 3 or 4 months, or up to 6 months in a deep freezer. It should be stored in appropriate containers to keep it fresh. After about 6 months or breast milk the infant will be ready to try various baby foods. Wide varieties of foods should be offered to allow the child to receive a balanced diet. Fruits, vegetables and meats are all readily available but some parents prefer to make their own baby foods.
It doesn’t really take too much to make it at home and it’s actually better for baby and you know exactly what baby is eating. No preservatives are a good thing. All you really need is a blender to puree” ™ meats a simple fork will suffice to mash and mix veggies.
Mashed potatoes, sweet potatoes, peas carrots, bananas, green beans, etc are all readily made in just a few minutes right on the kitchen counter, it’s cheaper and healthier and it helps to make the transition to adult foods when the toddler is in their picky years because they will already be accustomed to the tastes of the foods your family normally eats.
As the child enters the toddler years they may begin to become picky eaters, this is fairly common. Often you have to coerce and coddle to get them to eat. I have no real advice on this subject. Often it is easier to pass a camel through the eye of a needle than to get a child to eat. Sometimes you have to make a game out of it, other times you have to wait them out. Eventually they will get hungry and actually eat.
This problem is usually reversed when a child enters their adolescent years. Often it is difficult to get them to stop eating. They are growing literally exponentially at this age and their body needs a lot of nutrients to keep up with the dividing cells. Eating lots of fresh fruit and vegetables is always important but especially at this time, to get the amount of vitamins they need. But they also need a lot of protein to keep up with muscle development.
As always, eating a balanced diet from the major food groups, avoiding excessive sweet and sodas is the best way. Plenty of milk for calcium and plenty of water for proper cell hydration is very important to develop a healthy mind and body.