For many years parents were taught which foods to feed their babies based on a strict schedule. Infant cereals are first, in an order of rice to multi-grains. Mush of vegetables from a jar before sweet fruits. Meat was a dead last in the lineup. Strict schedules like this are hard to follow and also take away the fun of introducing your baby to the wonderful world of food.
I suggest we throw the schedule out the window. Actually, why don`t we skip the processed infant cereals altogether. If you have a blender or a food processor, you can make all the healthiest baby food at home. One of the reasons infant cereals are suggested as a fist food is they have a nice texture and can be mixed with breast milk, as well as being fortified with iron. Iron is one of the nutrients that need to be supplemented by food at about six months of age.
So, no infant cereal, what do you feed your baby?As a registered dietitian, I think one of the best first foods would be pureed lentils. It is a great source of iron and protein and can be combined with breast milk too! Lentils also provide your baby with B vitamins, and other minerals such as potassium, magnesium and calcium. Instead of starting your baby on a refined baby cereal, choose whole grains and legumes made at home.
For more information on cooking lentils and other pulses check out Saskatchewan Pulse Growers.
For more advice from a Registered Dietitian on how to start with the best foods for baby check out Vitae Nurition Talks.