There are 6 Natural spices for Babies and toddlers that can be safely introduced once your baby is well established on complementary foods. Spices are made from herbs, seeds and leaves and are used to flavour foods. Beyond flavour, spices also add nutrients to your baby’s foods and contain health benefits too. Aromatic spices, for example, the ginger, garlic. Nutmeg, turmeric etc.
Have you ever wondered why your baby refused to eat that healthy blend of food you painstakingly prepared? Well, mums, it may just be that the food is too blend for your baby’s taste buds and needs some spice in it. Surprised? Well, don’t be, because babies are changing every day and the rules of baby care are evolving daily. Come to think of it, babies from day one need fan or air conditioners to stay comfortable unlike what we had in the past where they had to be covered with a shawl for days. In the same manner, the rules of feeding have changed and are still changing. According to research, babies who were breastfed have tasted the spice in the food the mother ate before breastfeeding, and so they are already used to it. Sadly, because most mothers are not aware and still follow the old rules, they prepare the baby food bland hence the rejection. So, mums, it’s time to introduce your baby to some spices and see a difference in their eating pattern.
Health benefits of Natural spices for Baby and toddler
Boosts the immune system
Help digestion of food
Soothes stomach upsets
Eliminates the need to add sugar or salt to baby food.
Now let’s take a look at the spices that can be used
6 Natural spices for Babies and toddlers
This bright yellow spice contains loads of amazing health benefits. It is known to relieve colds and cough in babies, boosts brain functions, serves as an antioxidant and protects the heart in many ways. It can be introduced after six months and can be added to sweet potato, yam or plantain purees, sauces, rice recipes, and egg dishes
Garlic is closely related to onions and shallots and comes with a strong smell and delicious taste. It is loaded with a lot of nutrients like manganese (23% of Recommended Dietary Allowance), vitamin B6 (17%), vitamin C(15%), selenium (6%)and contains little amounts of calcium, iron copper and vitamin B1. Also contains 1.8 grams of protein and 9 grams of carbs. According to research, it contains a little bit of everything we need. Its common use is in the treatment of colds. It helps boost the immune system and keeps doctors at bay. Fresh garlic can be crushed nicely and added to baby foods like beans pudding, pottages, egg dishes, sauces etc. Can be introduced in little quantity from six months.
This is made from the inner bark of a tree called Cinnamomum. It is a delicious spice loaded with antioxidant benefits that protect the body from oxidative damages caused by free radicals. It is used as a natural food preservative and helps the body fight infections and repair tissue damage. It also aids the digestion of foods. Cinnamon can be introduced from six months and can be added to oats porridges, apple and pear purees, yoghurts, cakes, pancakes etc.
Closely related to turmeric, ginger contains compounds that help with digestion, reduce nausea. It is also an effective remedy against coughs and colds, respiratory disorders and relieves constipation. It should be grated finely before adding to the baby’s food and can be safely introduced after six to seven months. Ginger, the size of an orange seed can be added to baby’s meals like sweet potato pottages, purees, pancakes, cakes, rice and beans dishes etc.
These leaves are packed full of nutrients that are beneficial to your baby’s health. They are a rich source of iron and folic acids which helps prevent anaemia. They improve digestion, serve as an anti-diarrhoea agent and contains anti-inflammatory properties. They can be introduced from seen months and can be added to foods to flavour it but removed after cooking or before feeding. Can be used in sauces, rice dishes etc
This is a slightly sweet spice that contains nutrients beneficial to health. It contains vitamins, minerals, fibre, manganese, vitamin B6, and folate. It is known to help babies sleep better, helps with cognitive function, increase immune function, relieve pain and aids better digestion. Nutmeg can be introduced from eight months and can be added in little bits ( or a pinch) to pancakes, homemade cookies, soups and sauces. Just a pinch is needed.
Have you used any of these spices in your Child’s meal? We would like to read your experience in the comments.