May 102016
 

Hope for the Prevention of Peanut Allergyno peanut pic

Summary of this Blog Post: In March 2016, the results of a study about preventing peanut allergy were published. It was found that early introduction of peanuts at 4-11 months of age significantly reduced the development of peanut allergy. Feeding peanuts to your baby should be done only under close medical supervision from your pediatrician.

An allergy is a problem with the body’s immune system. Normally the immune system attacks legitimate threats to the body, such as germs. But sometimes the immune system goes awry and attacks a harmless substance that it thinks will hurt the body. This harmless substance is referred to as an allergen. An allergen can be something that is eaten (a food–usually a protein), something that is inhaled (pollen or dust), or something that touches or enters the body through the skin (latex gloves or a cosmetic lotion). The immune system perceives the harmless allergen as a danger to the body and causes an allergic reaction, which can involve sneezing to get the allergen out of the body through the nose and mouth, or vomiting to get it out through the mouth, or even pooping to get it out in diarrhea. The majority of allergic reactions are not serious, but some are very severe and can be fatal, such as anaphylaxis.

Anaphylaxis or anaphylactic shock is a very serious allergic reaction that can be life-threatening. It can cause a sudden drop in blood pressure and it can cause the tongue to swell and the throat to constrict, thereby causing problems with breathing (see links about anaphylaxis below). For safety, people at risk of anaphylaxis should always wear a medical bracelet, patch, or sticker and carry a pre-loaded epinephrine injection. Epinephrine keeps anaphylactic symptoms under control for only several minutes until the person could be rushed to an emergency room. Perhaps you know someone with an allergy to bees who always carries an EpiPen®, which is one of the most common brands of epinephrine injectors. Like bee allergy, peanut allergy is known for its risk of anaphylaxis.

Peanut allergy is on the rise. Peanut allergy is one of the most common food allergies in children, and it is on the rise. Peanut allergy has more than tripled from 1997 to 2008. Currently, approximately 1-3 children out of 100 have peanut allergy. Because peanut allergy is so dangerous and on the increase, it is considered a public health hazard.

Avoidance. Peanut allergy currently has no cure and is rarely outgrown–approximately 20% of children outgrow peanut allergy. The only option for people with peanut allergy is to avoid peanuts altogether. Total avoidance is difficult in an age where peanuts are in many processed foods–candy bars with peanuts, peanut snacks on airplanes, ballgame peanuts (as in “buy me some peanuts and Cracker Jax®”) and even Oreo®cookies with Reese’s® peanut butter cups. Laws are currently in effect for mandatory food label warnings on food packages containing peanuts and other common allergens (see links below).

Schools. In some schools, children with peanut allergy are now set-apart in the cafeteria at “no-peanuts” tables. Some schools have gone totally peanut-free–no peanuts allowed at all in any part of the school or playground–causing battles between parents of children with peanut allergy and parents who want their children to be able to take peanut butter and jelly sandwiches to school.

Parents worry that other people just don’t realize the severity of peanut allergy and the fact that it may mean life or death for their allergic children. A child with peanut allergy who eats peanuts, even a trace amount, can go into anaphylactic shock.

Since there is currently no cure for peanut allergy, hope lies in its prevention. Preventing peanut allergy would involve somehow “teaching” the immune system not to react to peanuts. And this teaching would have to be done BEFORE a full-blown peanut allergy developed in the child. So researchers raise the question, “How do we prevent peanut allergy before it starts?”

Bamba Peanut Snack

Bamba Peanut Snack
Photo Courtesy of National Institutes of Health (NIH.gov)

The answer seems to have been found during observation of the rate of peanut allergy in Jewish children living in Israeli. Their rate is ten times lower than that of Jewish children of similar ancestry living in the United Kingdom. In Israel, children are typically fed peanuts starting when they are about 7 months old in a snack food called Bamba® (see picture on right). In the UK, doctors recommended not feeding peanuts to babies until they are three years old, because of fear of peanut allergy. Because of the large difference in the rates of peanut allergy in these two groups, scientists began to hypothesize that early introduction of peanuts might actually help prevent peanut allergy.

The LEAP Study. To find out if this hypothesis was true, Dr. Gideon Lack of King’s College in London lead a study named “LEAP” (Learning Early About Peanut allergy). The study’s participants included 640 babies who were between 4 and 11 months old, since peanut allergy usually begins very early in life and 4-11 months is a significant age for the development of the immune system. The babies were deemed to have high risk of peanut allergy because they already had severe ezema or an egg allergy or both.

The LEAP study involved dividing the babies randomly into two cohorts: a peanut-consumption group who ate peanuts during the study and the peanut-avoidance group who did not eat peanuts. The peanut-consumption group was exposed to peanut protein three times per week until they were 5 years old by feeding them either Bamba or smooth peanut butter.

Results of the LEAP Study. The peanut-consumption group remarkably had more than an 80% reduction in peanut allergy. Therefore, the early introduction of peanuts DID help to prevent peanut allergy in most of the children in the LEAP study. Results of the LEAP study were published in February 2015 at NEJM.org (see link below).

AAP Recommendations. In the US, from 2000 to 2008, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommended that parents not feed their babies peanuts until age 3 years. They have since retracted that recommendation. Currently, the AAP stresses that parents work with their pediatricians BEFORE feeding peanuts to their babies. This is especially true for babies with first-degree relatives (parent or sibling) with allergies, who are at very high risk of allergy. ANY allergy in the family, including allergies to peanuts, tree nuts, bees, pollen, pet dander, gluten, latex, etc., should be discussed in depth with your pediatrician before you feed your baby peanuts.

How ironic that the practice of avoiding feeding peanuts to babies in the UK actually raised the rate of peanut allergy, and not insignificantly!


WARNINGS ABOUT FEEDING PEANUTS TO YOUR BABY:  Please note that the children in the LEAP study were fed peanuts under close medical supervision. Please do not feed your children peanuts without first getting your pediatrician’s approval.

Professional recommendations about the foods to feed your baby change frequently. Baby food books and websites may have old information, therefore, it is very important that you first discuss with your pediatrician ANY foods you want to introduce to your baby BEFORE you feed them to your baby. Your doctor should be knowledgeable about the latest professional recommendations.

WARNINGS ABOUT CHOKING: Whole peanuts should never be fed to small children because they are choking hazards. Peanuts should first be ground to a powder in the blender and then mixed in with baby cereal, purrées, smoothies, etc. Thick peanut butter is also a choking hazard. Peanut butter should be thoroughly mixed with liquid until it is thin and spead thinly on bread or crackers. See the links below for the healthiest way to feed a baby peanuts.


The LEAP-ON Study. When the LEAP study concluded, the researchers had a follow-up question: “Did the children have to continue eating peanuts regularly to keep peanut allergy from developing?” To answer this, a follow-up study named “LEAP-ON” (Persistence of Oral Tolerance to Peanut) was begun with 556 children from the LEAP study. This time, both the peanut-avoidance and the peanut-consumption groups were NOT given any peanuts for a year. At the end of the year, the children were then given peanuts. And in almost all of the children, yes, tolerance to peanuts did continue after a year of not eating peanuts. Therefore, the LEAP-ON study found that avoiding peanuts for a period of one year would not (significantly) raise the incidence of the development of peanut allergy. Results of the LEAP-ON study were published online in March 2016 at NEJM.org (see link below).

Future Studies on Peanut Allergy. Researchers now ask if tolerance to peanut allergy would continue if children avoided peanuts for more than one year. To answer that question, future studies on peanut allergy are planned for much longer avoidance periods.

SPONSORED LINKS

Bamba Peanut Snack
I actually purchased Bamba from Amazon.com to try it. The texture of Bamba is like that of Jax® puffed cheese curls, but it tastes like peanuts. Most children in the LEAP study liked Bamba and many ate more than was required by the study. If you wish, click here to buy Bamba.

Super Healthy Nuts and Seeds
Raw, unprocessed peanuts, nuts, and seeds are powerhouses of nutrition. Peanuts are actually biologically not nuts, but legumes, but people tend to consider them nuts. Nuts and seeds contain healthy oils–peanut oil, flaxseed oil, sunflower seed oil,etc.–that go rancid quickly when exposed to air, light, or heat. Perhaps you have seen flaxseed oil in dark bottles refrigerated at the supermarket. The best way to feed your baby nuts and seeds is to buy them organic, whole, and raw and grind them in the blender immediately before feeding them to your baby before the oils have any chance of turning rancid.

Super Healthy Peanut Butter and Other Butters
Feeding your baby healthy peanut butter, almond butter, pumpkin seed butter, tahini (sesame seed butter), and other nut and seed butters is another way to include to include nuts and seeds in your baby’s diet. After opening the jars, keep them in the refrigerator and discard them at the expiration date. The healthy oils in natural nut and seed butters will separate and float to the top in the bottles, so you may want to store them on their sides in the fridge. Place them in the fridge where you easily see them and give them a quarter turn every so often to keep the oil mixed throughout the butters.

Allergies Health Center from WedMD
WebMD has lots of great information about allergies and anaphylaxis on their website. Click the links below:
A list of symptoms of anaphylaxis.
Anaphylaxis: Managing Life-Threatening Allergies
VIDEO: Anaphylaxis: Managing Life-Threatening Allergies
Anaphylaxis. Act Fast — Why Every Second Counts
Severe Allergies Video: Teach Your Child How to Use Epinephrine
Allergic to Nuts? Surprising Foods to Watch Out For
WebMD: LEAP and LEAP-ON studies

The LEAP and LEAP-ON website

New England Journal of Medicine–NEJM.org
NEJM: LEAP Study-Randomized Trial of Peanut Consumption in Infants at Risk for Peanut Allergy 
NEJM: LEAP-ON Study-Effect of Avoidance on Peanut Allergy after Early Peanut Consumption

Food Labels
Food Allergen Labeling info from FoodAllergy.org
Frequently Asked Questions About Food Allergen Labeling from KidsWithFoodAllergies.org

Studies on Already-Existing Peanut Allergy
The above blog post is about the LEAP and LEAP-ON studies, which were about the prevention of peanut allergy before it developed in children. For those who already have peanut allergy, there are some studies going on for the treatment of an already-developed peanut allergy.
WebMD: New Therapy May Knock Out Peanut Allergy–Experimental Treatment Gives Patients Tiny Amounts of Peanut Protein
WebMD: Common Bacteria Helps Treat Food Allergies–Promising Results in Animal Studies Offer Hope for Treatment in Humans.
NIH: Therapy Shows Promise for Peanut Allergy

Food Allergy Resources
American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology (AAAAI). www.AAAAI.org
Kids With Food Allergies (KFA). www.kidswithfoodallergies.org
Food Allergy Research & Education (FARE) www.foodallergy.org

Hemp Seed Baby Food | When to Feed, How to Feed and Why It Is So Gosh Darn Good For You

 baby food how to, baby's first foods, Moms Want to Know About, seeds, Super Porridge  Comments Off on Hemp Seed Baby Food | When to Feed, How to Feed and Why It Is So Gosh Darn Good For You
Apr 142015
 

Can I add hulled hemp seeds to my baby’s diet

Yes. Hulled hemp seeds, (also called hemp hearts) pose little to no allergy risk to your little one (check with your pediatrician but 7-8 months old should be a good starting point) Hemp seeds are super good for baby and packed with plant nutrition. They have protein, omega fatty acid and antioxidants. Hemp seeds have a mild nutty flavor and are a great addition to almost any baby food and toddler food.

Ideas for serving hemp seeds to baby and toddler

Hemp seeds are best served raw to protect its nutrients. They are sold already hulled and ready to add to your favorite baby and toddler food. Serving sizes depend on the age of your baby.  A teaspoon or two of hemp hearts are a good starting point. As your baby gets older, keep in mind that three tablespoons of hemp hearts are considered a serving size and contain 10 grams of protein – the daily allowance for a 1 to 3 year old, so from ages one to three there is no need to exceed three tablespoons of hemp hearts.  See this cool chart on recommended daily allowances of protein by age from hempinformer.com. Hemp hearts can be added to yogurt, applesauce, super porridge, smashed banana, smashed avocado …most anything.  They can even be eaten straight from the plate. (or the spoon as the case may be.)  There is also hemp powder and hemp milk available for other ways to get hemp into your baby’s diet.  Hemp powder is easy to sprinkle on almost anything.  Hemp milk can be mixed into super porridge or added to fruit for a smoothie.

 Why is hemp so good for baby (and you, too)

Hemp is a great source of protein and Omega 3 as we have mentioned.  We know protein gives us longer energy but why are omega 3’s so important to our health? TheSweetbeet.com reminds us that omega 3 offers ” enhanced brain functioning (our brain is 60% fat, and half of that is DHA – an Omega 3), improved blood circulation, strengthened immunity, lower incidence of inflammation and healthier eyes.”  Sold yet?  Hemp also packs a heavier punch on the protein front than flax seed and almonds, two heavy hitters in their own right.  For parents, hemp hearts can be sprinkled on salads, soups and vegetables.

Have you had good experience with hemp seeds?  Share them with us.

 

Mar 312015
 

BabyMaking Sundays Writing about and teaching about baby food making is what we are all about.  As you know from our social media posts, I love sharing the great work that other people are doing in the baby food making world. I am happy, in fact, exuberant to share it all: recipes,  products,  tips,  books,  and websites that make baby food making easier, more productive and more tasty and nutritive, One site that is knocking it out of the park is Baby Prep Sundays. I found Baby Prep Sundays on our Instagram feed and I was amazed at the sheer volume of baby food preparation methods that were displayed in beautiful multi-color pictures.  When I visited the Baby Prep Sundays site, I was even more impressed. I decided we had to know more and the creator of BabyPrepSundays, Arianny Rodriguez, generously agreed to talk to us.  I hope that we asked the questions you would have asked and that you learn some helpful hints.

Arianny, thanks for talking with us today. We love your website. Any mom who shares ways to make feeding baby and toddlers easier is a hero to us!

Can you tell us why you got started with your site, BabyPrepSundays.com?

Aw, thanks – but I’m just a mom helping to encourage other moms to at least try making their own baby food. Actually, BabyPrepSundays started out only as a an instagram account. The website just came naturally a few months later. My friend is the mastermind behind the very successful Instagram account @mealprepmondays. This account is about how to prep your meals for the rest of the week so that it encourages people to eat healthier. I had been following him for years. Then one day last summer, I was at home making my daughter baby food which is what I do every Sunday. Out of nowhere I thought “other moms must be doing this today too!” I then posted my prep to my personal instagram account and tagged @mealprepmondays. I asked what he thought about “babyprepsundays” and he loved the idea! And here I am!


Many new moms are intimidated to make their own baby food. They feel that the baby food in jars on the grocery store shelves are better for their baby and that making their own baby food is too difficult. What would you say to those moms to encourage them to try to make their own baby food?

This is a great question. At least once a week I feature a prep from a real mom that l refer to as “Monster Preps”. This is usually over 100 ounces of food at a time. I do this to celebrate this wonderful accomplishment but I am always reminding moms that you don’t always have to make “Monster Preps”. Even I don’t always make them! It’s about doing what you can – a small prep – any prep is awesome! If that’s what feels right for a mom, then by all means, stick to your small preps. Once you get the hang of that, the rest will fall into place. Also, I think sometimes moms that are new to this imagine it to be a very complicated recipe. It’s the complete opposite of that. Combine any two veggies and or fruits, peel and steam them together, and puree. I bet you that most of the time it will taste amazing. No complicated ingredients, no spices – simple is key. When you use fresh, organic produce, it will be delicious!


What is the most important benefit from making your own baby food in your experience?

For sure the answer to this is that your baby is getting the best nutrients possible. Fresh, clean eating. You know exactly what’s in it. You can’t beat that! Then of course, there is the added benefit of it saving you so much money which all families can use.


What is your most helpful tip in making your own baby food in your experience?

Plan ahead! This is true for when an adult wants to eat healthier and this is true for meal prepping for babies as well. My husband does the food shopping every Saturday so every Friday night I’m planning on what meals I want to make my baby for the week ahead. Usually nothing fancy – pick 3 veggies and 3 fruits. Sometimes I don’t have a chance to make it all but at least I have the ingredients in the fridge for when I do have some time to slot in the cooking.


We see you have an ebook for sale on your site, a getting started guide. Can you tell us more about it?

Yes, it’s intended to be a quick start guide. The basics all rolled into a document that you can read on your mobile device when you have some time. It includes: Food chart by age, how to address food allergies, what equipment options you have, how to cook foods, guidelines for storing food, how to thaw the food and of course my favorite recipes! There are some great bonuses as well like how to plan your baby food prep party and some productivity tips for moms.


What were your babys’ favorite baby foods?

My 1 year old absolutely loves bananas. She eats one almost everyday and she’ll eat anything I make with it, like smoothies. My 4 year old loves rice & beans with ground beef.


What is your inspiration for new and exciting baby food ideas?
Usually it’s what’s in season. I had a great time this past fall making all things pumpkin!


Are there plans for a Baby Prep Sundays Cookbook and/or what is next for your site, BabyPrepSundays.com?

I would absolutely love to feature preps from real moms! I have a few there now but I’d love to really grow that page and show all the cool little tricks that even I’ve learned from moms like using press n’ seal plastic wrap to cover the ice trays. If you’d like to feature your baby prep, please do email me at babyprepsundays@gmail.com.

Thanks, Arianny, creator of BabyPrepMondays for sharing your ideas, tips, and help! 

You can find Arianny on her Website, Facebook Page, Instagram, and/or Pinterest account.

Mar 172015
 

2015-03-05 03.04.38

Sweet potato is a perfect first baby food and it is great for toddlers too!

Sweet potatoes are one of our favorite “first foods” for baby. But once your baby reaches a year old into toddlerhood there is no reason to stop feeding her sweet potato! Make sweet potato fun to eat for her by preparing Mr & Ms Sweet Potato Heads!  Sweet Potato  heads are delicious, nutritious and super fun to make. It might look like mashed sweet potato alone but it is actually a delicious combination of  sweet potato, yogurt, organic honey, and a bit of orange juice combined for the filling of decorated “potato heads.” Use “decorative touches”: olive eyes, carrot stick hair, and avocado mouth was used in this picture. Have fun creating your own. Full recipe below.

Mr/Ms Sweet Potato Heads Recipe from Super Baby Food

(remove the organic honey for baby under one)

Slice 2 cooked sweet potatoes in half. Scoop out flesh, being careful to keep skin intact to be used as a bowl later. Mash flesh and mix with:

2 tablespoons yogurt

1 tablespoon maple syrup or honey

2 tablespoons orange juice

Replace mashed sweet potato mixture into reserved skin bowls. Use “Decorative Touches” to make eyes, nose, mouth, hair, etc.

Send us your own Mr & Ms Sweet Potato Head creation and we will will post them on our Facebook Page and pick a few winners from the entries for a free copy of Super Baby Food, 3rd edition.!

Feb 262015
 

bananaoatpancakebatterI had to share this fantastic, easy, delicious recipe for banana and oat pancakes.  I found the recipe on Mountain Mama Cooks website and I tweaked it a little. The pictures are all mine!

Here is what I love about the recipe:

The banana oat pancakes are made with organic oats and almond milk and cooked in coconut oil…no white flour in sight.  It is also so easy to make.  You basically place all the ingredients in the blender and puree it up.  It also has some cinnamon in it.

Banana Oat PancakeCinnamon is a super spice! Cinnamon is rich in fiber and polyphenols (think anti-oxidants), is known to be an anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial. It also helps to control blood sugar levels, triglycerides, cholesterol, blot clots and heartburn. Sold yet? Here is the kicker…kids love these pancakes.  Make a batch and the whole family will be chewing down on them.  Put leftovers in the fridge and the family will want them for breakfast.

 

Banana – Oat Pancakes, from MountainMamaCooks.com

INGREDIENTS

2 cups gluten free oats

1 1/4 cups vanilla almond milk
1 large ripe, organic banana
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 heaping tablespoon local honey
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 large organic egg
coconut oil or butter for cooking
INSTRUCTIONS

Place all ingredients, except egg and coconut oil in the base of a blender and blend until smooth. Add egg and pulse a few times until egg is fully incorporated.
Heat a griddle or large saute pan over medium heat and melt a teaspoon or two of coconut oil. When hot, pour or scoop the batter onto the griddle, using approximately 1/4 cup for each pancake. Brown on both sides (about 2-3 minutes per side) and serve hot with maple syrup.
*If batter becomes too thick to pour easily, add a tablespoon or two of almond milk to thin.

Feb 202015
 

beet root baby food Why are beets a good idea to feed to baby

Beets are so darn healthy for baby (and you too!) because they contain calcium, potassium, vitamin C, and high fiber. With such a great nutritional report card, I know you are excited to get started feeding beets to your baby. Cooked beets can be fed to baby from 9 months old. A beet is a root vegetable and as such, nitrates are an issue. Babies who are under the age of 6 months old have not developed the stomach acids necessary to fight beet nitrates. Since I do not recommend feeding cooked beets to your baby until the age of 9 months your baby will be safe from nitrates.

How to prepare beet baby food

Beets can be baked, boiled, or steamed and then peeled and pureed. Note that you need a little time on your hands to cook beets:

Steam: Wonderful for holding in nutrients but you need the time, it takes about 60 minutes!

Boil: Simmer whole beets for two hours. Peels will easily come off and juices will be better retained in whole beets.

Bake: Wash thoroughly, place on a baking sheet and bake at 400°F for 90 minutes to two hours—the larger the beets, the longer the baking time.

Peel and purée: After cooking beets, remove stems. If you wish, slip off peels under cold running water before puréeing.  Pureed beets will keep in the fridge for 3 days.

Mix: some great foods to mix with pureed beets: sweet potato puree, applesauce, and yogurt!

Freezing: Use the Baby Food Cube Method or Tray-Freeze Method, and keep for up to 2 months. Remember to store in a stainless steel ice cube tray and then store in a organic waxed paper lined plastic freezer bag.

Storing for later use: Immediately remove the greens so that they do not pull moisture from the root. Leave an inch or two of stem on the root, or it will bleed during cooking. Store beets in the refrigerator wrapped in organic, bleach-free wax paper and then in a plastic bag for up to 10 days.

Beet Baby Food Fun Facts:

Leafy green beet tops are edible

Lemon can help remove beet juice stains from your fingers while preparing cooked beets

Beets in your diet can: prevent cancer, boost your immune system, and reduce blood pressure later in life

Beets may put your baby in a good mood…a substance fond in beets, betaine, may relax the mind thereby improving your mood.

In a pinch, canned beets have lots of nutrition too…not as much as you would preserve making them yourself but enough to make it worth your while.

Gross but interesting fact: beets are a good indicator of the time it takes food to pass through your baby…let’s put it this way…you can’t mistake it!

Jan 282015
 

quinoa blueberry baby food Quinoa Porridge is great to mix with fruit like blueberries

Quinoa is a a seed…a very powerful seed.  That statement is actually redundant because a seed, by design, is packed with nutrition!  Even though quinoa is a seed, it can be fed to your baby much in the same way as brown rice super porridge or other whole grain super porridges (barley, millet, oatmeal, etc.).  It is a terrific base with nutritive value that you can add other foods to for taste, variation,  and texture variety.  Consider mixing prepared Quinoa with smashed blueberries for you 8 month old baby.

Quinoa / Blueberry Baby Food Recipe

To prepare quinoa super porridge, grind 1 cup of quinoa to a fine power, cook the powder (1 cup ungrounded) in two cups of boiling water, whisking throughout the cooking process to prevent lumps.  Blueberries are a perfect blender for quinoa super porridge. They are full of antioxidants, plus fiber, vitamin A, and Vitamin C.  The current wisdom is to feed mashed blueberries when your baby is 9 months to 10 months old.  Watch those blueberry peels, though.  Make sure they are good and mashed before adding to quinoa as peels can be a choking hazard.

What do you mix with quinoa super porridge for your baby?

 

Jan 232015
 

Kale is a great choice for baby food, starting at 9 months old

Kale is a super duper green and a great food to your feed your baby at 8 months and older.  When you see this great big bunch of kale in the grocery store, though, the thought of preparing it might might seem a little overwhelming.  Do not fret.

Kale Baby Food Puree How-to Video

This quick video shows an easy way to prepare kale baby food puree. Remember to mix the pureed kale with a fruit, such as a banana, or yogurt in order to cut the strong flavor.

If you have discovered any tricks to preparing kale baby puree, please share it!

Jan 092015
 

Give Brussels Sprout Baby Food a Try

Brussells sprouts are probably not the first vegetable that comes to mind when choosing a baby food for your baby. They have a bad reputation.  Most of us remember being forced to eat them as children.  You probably also remember their unique smell as they boil.  I am here to suggest that you give them another try. Brussels sprouts are so full of nutrition and goodness.  A member of the cruciferous family, brussels sprouts are considered a Super Green Veggie, chock full of vitamin C, folate, lutein other goodies that are too good to miss!

Preparing Brussels Sprout Baby Food

Babies eight months old and older are ready for cooked brussels sprout. (raw brussels sprouts are a no-no for baby)  tasty brussels sprouts start with selection.  Pick small sprouts whose leaves are tight, firm, and bright green.  Select the smallest ones you can, they are sweeter and will have a milder flavor.  Pick off any yellow leaves and trim close to the stem.  It is important not to overcook your brussels sprouts as they will become mushy and the flavor will be too strong.  Best to steam them whole for 15 to 20 minutes until the stem end is done…then puree and add to cereal or yogurt or freeze using the food cube method for a later time.

Preparing Brussels Sprout to Freeze for the Family

I found a terrific blog post on blanching brussels sprouts to be frozen and used either in a family recipe immediately or frozen for future use.  MommaToldMeblog describes with some great pictures an easy way to blanch the brussels sprouts, place them in an ice bath so that they do not overcook, and freeze at the height of freshness for future use.

How do you like to prepare your brussels sprouts?

 

 

 

Dec 222014
 

Quinoa – Grain or Seed

Quinoa, commonly referred to as a grain is actually a seed!  It is a very special seed. Quinoa’s nutritive value, particularly its protein value is out of this world.  It is considered a complete protein (all of the essential amino acids are represented and in correct proportions) and 1/2 cup will fulfill a child’s daily protein needs.

Feed Quinoa to baby

Recommended to start to feed baby at 8 months old, Quinoa can be a super porridge base and I suggest grinding the quinoa to a powder, just as I suggest preparing super porridge brown rice cereal or super porridge oatmeal. Cook the powder (1 cup ungrounded) in two cups of boiling water, whisking throughout the cooking process to prevent lumps.  As always, you may cook the quinoa whole and then blend to desired consistency for your 8 month old.  Mixing the quinoa porridge with fruit, try a banana, vegetables, or yogurt is always a good idea.

A Super Baby Food fan, (thanks, Amanda) suggests preparing quinoa by blending cooked quinoa with 1 steamed squash, 1 steamed zucchini, 1 banana and a dash of nutmeg with about 2 oz of formula or breast milk.  She swears the the taste and texture is perfect for an 8 month old!

Feed Quinoa to Family 

Recipes using quinoa instead of meat for protein needs can be very tasty.  Here are a few ideas for quinoa recipes for the family:

 Vegan Quinoa Stuffed Peppers by Greatist.com

 Zucchini Quinoa Lasagna by VegetarianTimes.com

Quinoa and Vegetable Stir-fry by Skinnyms.com

Please share your family recipes using quinoa. Thanks!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Dec 112014
 

Kale is a super duper green and can be fed to baby, cooked, at 9 months old.  Raw kale should not be fed before your baby is 10 months old.  You already know that kale is crazy-good for you and your baby.  Here’s why: It has phytonutrients, crazy amounts of vitamin K, fiber, iron, and calcium. “Phytonutrients are certain organic components of plants, and these components are thought to promote human health. Fruits, vegetables, grains, legumes, nuts and teas are rich sources of phytonutrients.”

Kale has a very strong flavor, though, so add a cube to super   porridge or mix with banana to make it deliciously palatable for baby!

    Kale Puree Recipe:
   (Also found in Super Baby Food, 3rd edition)
    To prepare Kale Baby Food:
  • swish Kale leaves in a sink full of cold water
  • remove the stems –I go into a detailed method for removing the stems that is detailed (and entertaining) on p. 195.
  • Chop into bite sized pieces
  • Steam the kale leaves or sauté in 1/2 cup boiling water in a large shallow pan. (a frying pan)
  • Stir just until kale leaves turn bright green.
  • Remove from pan and place in blender (blend in the water from the leaves)
  • Puree and freeze using the Food Cube Method for up to 2 months.

Share your kale baby food puree recipes, tips and/or food combinations.

 

 

Dec 052014
 

Brown Rice Cereal baby food by Ruth Yaron from Super Baby Food – Super Porridge

Enjoy this quick how to video (at the link) on how to prepare Ruth’s famous Super Porridge baby food made with brown rice featured in Super Baby Food.  We featured this video on our Instagram account.

Super Baby Food Brown Rice Super Porridge

Super Porridge is a mainstay of the Super Baby Food diet!  Do not let the name confuse you.  I am simply talking about baby cereal…a first solid food for your baby…the kind that is generally called “rice cereal” and comes in a box wrapped in cellophane at the grocery store.  What Super Baby Food teaches is to forgo the box at grocery store and purchase the grains from scratch (oat groats, brown rice, quinoa, millet, etc), ground the grains to a powder and place the powder in boiling water to make your very own, nutritionally superior baby cereal!

Super Porridge is easy to make, full of organic, superior nutrition AND money-saving.  What’s more, the porridge is flexible so that it can be part of a toddler diet, a young person’s diet, and even Mom and Dad’s diet.

Super Porridge is made from whole grains, shown here as brown rice super porridge.  Brown Rice Super Porridge is super easy to make.    As your baby grows,  just a few tweaks to consistency and ingredients can provide the flexibility to keep your baby satisfied and growing.

Super Baby Food Fan Tips For Preparing Super Porridge

Our fans have offered their own tips for successful super porridge preparation:

  • Blenders that work well to grind those grains: Oster, baby bullet, magic bullet, coffee grinder
  • Grind for the full two minutes, even if sounds horrendous…be patient
  • Cook the grins first, and then puree!
Please share your own tips for preparing Super Porridge.

 

 

Avocado Is the Perfect First Baby Food | How To Select Prepare and Store Avocado Baby Food

 avocado, baby food recipe, baby's first foods, Moms Want to Know About  Comments Off on Avocado Is the Perfect First Baby Food | How To Select Prepare and Store Avocado Baby Food
May 282014
 

Avocado are a great first food for baby

I have said it again and again on this site that an avocado is a great first baby food.  Not only is it easy to prepare, you simply have to slice open a ripe one and wash or puree with a bit of breast milk or formula, it is also crazy nutritious.  This original fun fruit, and yes, it is a fruit, is said to have all the nutrients one might need to survive.  It is a pretty powerful food! Avocados are an excellent source of unsaturated fatty acids and have a higher proportion of this “good” fat than any other fruit except for the olive.  It is a great source of fiber, folate, and vitamin K and touted for it brain development qualities.

Selecting Avocado

When selecting avocado look carefully for damage, which shows up as soft dark spots in the skin.  When picked up, an avocado should feel heavy for its size.  If you are not going to eat the avocado for a few days, select one that is firm but not rock hard and ripen it at home by setting it on your counter at room temperature for up to 6 days. Avocados are ripe when they yield to gentle pressure and feel soft all over.

Storing avocado

After ripened, store the avocado in the refrigerator in the vegetable crisper for up to two weeks.  Store cut avocados by leaving the skins on and keeping the pit in the uneaten portion.  You can brush the fruit with lemon juice (if your baby is old enough for citrus) to keep it from turning brown.  You CAN freeze avocado but the texture, once thawed, will be mushy.  If you are freezing mashed avocado (without any breast milk or formula added) your baby might not even notice the difference!

Avocado preparation ideas

Mash it

Scoop the ripe flesh out of the skin of the avocado and fork mash.  For a younger baby, you can puree it in blender or food processor, it won’t take long, and add a bit of formula or breast milk to thin to desired consistency and feed right away.

Add stuff

Try mashed avocado with banana, tofu, and cottage cheese to mix up the flavor and texture for your baby.  Of course, mashed avocado is a great addition to super porridge as your baby gets older.

Spread it

Mash and spread avocado as a “vegetable” spread. Use spread for the entire family as a mini dip for vegetables or as the secret ingredient of a fantastic sandwich.

Avocado Smoothie

Avocado is becoming a much loved ingredient for smoothies.  It gives the drink a creamy texture much in the same way yogurt might and of course, the nutrients are hard to beat.

The nice folks at Babble.com share 10 smoothie recipes featuring avocado.  Avocado can be mixed with fruits including: blueberries, peaches, raspberries, pineapple, and cucumber.  Spinach makes an appearance in these smoothies as well as chocolate!

Grow your own avocado plant

You can not open an avocado without having to maneuver around that huge seed!  Did you know that the seed WILL grow into an avocado plant?  Chances of the plant bearing fruit is pretty uncertain and could take years, however the plant itself is quite nice looking.  I have some detailed instructions in the latest version of Super Baby Food that tell how to grow an avocado plant.  For a quick look at what a growing avocado plant might look like check out La Femme BEEBO blog that features a great picture of a growing avocado plant from the seed.

I would love to hear how YOU have added avocado to your baby’s diet.  Share your ideas here.

May 212014
 

Popeye was right, spinach is good for you.

Greens are all the rage and with good reason, they are so darn good for you and for your baby.  Spinach is a super green that packs a nutritional punch, it is loaded with calcium, vitamin A and iron among other nutrients.

What you should know about homemade spinach baby food

Baby must be at least 9 months old to eat cooked greens, 10 months old for finely chopped raw greens. A young baby (0 -6 months) can not handle the nitrates found in spinach and other leafy greens. Spinach is one of the EWG’s Dirty dozen as well so buy organic!

Selecting and storing spinach for baby food

Buy organic spinach leaves that are loose and not in plastic bags, if at all possible.  Leaves should be young and tender with no thick veins, bright green, crisp and not wilted, insect-free, and have no bruises, decaying spots, or slime.  Rush home from the market and cook and freeze greens the second you walk in the door. If you must store them first, wrap them in white paper towels and place in organic, bleach-free wax paper-lined plastic bags in a cold part of the refrigerator or vegetable crisper.  Use them fast, within a day or two.

Preparing spinach baby food

Examine the spinach leaves and discard leaves with a lot of yellow or decay.  Trim any thick stems or small blemishes before cooking.  To remove any leftover sand, try placing the leaves in a large bowl filled with luke warm water so any sand falls to the bottom of the bowl.  Fish out the leaves and place them in a new bowl that is filled with cold water for one more rinse.  Coasely chop cleaned leaves, if desired.

Steam the spinach leaves in a covered container for about 5 minutes for whole leaves, 3 minutes for chopped leaves.  Steaming in an uncovered container will reduce the strong flavor of the greens but might also mean the escape of nutrients. Drain the steamed leaves, reserving the cooking liquid to be used for pureeing.

Parents.com has a great post with pictures of cooking a pureeing  spinach baby food.

Place steamed greens in a blender or food processor with a bit of the reserved liquid.  Place pureed baby food in a stainless steel cube tray and freeze for later use or storage using the Food Cube Method.

Other spinach baby food meal options

Spinach has a strong flavor as do many nutrient-filled greens.  Adding spinach to other great foods is a terrific way to make it more palatable for your baby.  Mixing pureed, cooked spinach with banana, sweet potato, oatmeal super porridge are just a few ways of masking spinach’s strong flavor. Adding cooked or raw spinach, when baby is old enough, into a smoothie concoction is another great way to serve spinach and its good for Mommy too!

Spinach Fun Facts

In addition to spinach being so nutritious, did you know that spinach can be terrific for your skin?   According to this post by Care2.com, eating spinach can leave you with a glowing completion on the outside as well as healthy on the inside.  This post lists 8 great benefits from eating spinach!

Have you experimented with spinach baby food?  Any tips on preparing, storing, or serving spinach baby food that you would like to share?

 

 

 

 

May 172014
 

Feeding baby is about more than just baby food

If you are a fan of Super Baby Food you know that feeding your baby and toddler is not simply for nutrition but also for supporting development, learning, and bonding with Mom and Dad.  In addition to the signs of readiness that must be present to begin “solid” food, there are some additional “fun” guidelines for when you get started feeding solid foods, too.  One of my favorites, “Do Play with Your Food,’ allows parents and caregivers to “let go” a bit at feeding time allowing baby to develop, explore, and discover on his own in addition to adding to his nutrition.  In this post, I elaborate on the “Do Play With Your Food” directive  AND include a fun recipe that illustrates the point – “Canoes for Riding the Rapids” featuring banana, tofu, ground seeds, and wheat germ.

DO Play with Your Food

Babies are messy eaters. It is perfectly normal for a baby to dip his fingers into bowls of food, suck his fingers and fist, squeeze and smear food onto his face and the tray with his palm and fingers, mash it into his hair, spit it out or let it drool down his chin, blow it at you or on the wall, throw it on the floor along with cups and bowls, and spill his drinks. Be assured that to everything, there is a learning purpose. Your baby is not doing these things to provoke you—he is experimenting and learning about his environment and the texture and feel of his food. She explores her food just as she explores her toys. Restrain your impulse to be neat and encourage self-feeding. Your baby doesn’t need Miss Manners’ approval.

The right recipe can make eating and learning fun

Try this recipe for your older baby (>1 year) or toddler and watch as he discovers and learns all while eating great food!

Canoes for Riding the Rapids

A slightly curved, shorter banana is good for this recipe. Wash the outside of a banana. Make a vertical slit down one side of the unpeeled banana leaving about 1⁄2 inch uncut at each end. If the banana is curved, make the slit on the “upside” so that it’s shaped like a canoe. Open slit and carefully scoop out the flesh.

Fork-mash half of the banana and mix with 1⁄2 cup of mashed tofu, 2 tablespoons of ground seeds, 1 tablespoon of wheat germ, and honey to taste. Spread banana peel open gently and make bottom of canoe flat by pressing with fingers so that it will be stable, being careful not to rip ends.

Return mixture to inside of banana. You can trim around the slit with a sharp knife to make the opening wider.

Use the other half of the banana flesh to shape fish and rocks, roll in wheat germ, and place them around the canoe. These “dangerous” rocks must be avoided to prevent the canoe from breaking apart.

Make oars out of carrot or celery sticks.

Please feel free to add your own recipes that allow baby to play with his food!

Apr 302014
 

organic yogurt with blueberryProbiotics for Beginning Eaters

Yogurt with Active Cultures

When it comes to yogurt, some experts recommend waiting until babies are 8 months old, others say yogurt is OK to introduce as early as 6 months. Ask your pediatrician for his opinion before you start feeding your baby yogurt.

When you do decide to begin yogurt as part of your baby’s diet, be sure to select yogurt with live probiotics by looking for words like “active yogurt cultures” or “healthy live bacteria cultures” on the label. Probiotics are absolutely necessary for a healthy immune system. These healthy, good bacteria keep the bad bacteria in your body in check. If the bad bacteria overtakes the good, all types of infections may occur, including the fungal infections thrush and candida.

The first probiotics in baby’s intestines come from mom’s vagina during birth or bacteria in the operating room during a cesarian section. Then baby gets additional probiotics from mom’s breast milk, formula, and the environment.

page53image12584
page53image12856
Plain Organic Yogurt

Read the ingredients list on the label to make sure it is plain yogurt. Babies need fats, so buy the whole fat or low-fat varieties and not the non-fat type. You could also make your own yogurt by hand.  I have detailed instructions on how to make your own yogurt in the new edition of Super Baby Food.  A quick set of yogurt making instructions as well as pictures can be found on the TheFrugalGirl blog.

Greek yogurt is another choice.  It is thicker than regular yogurt and more appropriate for a Stage 2 eater. Before the advent of Greek yogurt, manufacturers would strain the whey from regular yogurt to make “yogurt cheese,” which is similar to Greek yogurt.

Yogurt – Flavor Your Own

Much of the “fruit” yogurt in supermarkets have gobs of unhealthy sugar and flavors added to them, even the yogurts that have healthy-looking pictures of fruit on their containers.

Ignore everything on the carton except the nutrition facts panel and the ingredients list, and this goes for all foods in packages at all stores, even health food stores. Flavor plain yogurt with the age-appropriate real fruit and veggies you freeze using the baby food freeze cube method.

TIP: Yogurt (and other light colored food) is a great food to have fun mixing food colors into, and I do mean food coloring, like the liquid from canned beets, turmeric, frozen berry juices. Let your child mix them together into yogurt for fun new colors and for learning color combinations.

Other Probiotics Food Choices

Examples of other foods that contain probiotics are kefir, sauerkraut and other fermented foods. All these foods in the supermarket might be fakes–they can contain only dead bacteria–including baby yogurts that are shelf stable. Buy only the foods that indicate that their probiotics are still alive and kicking, with your doc’s approval.

Apr 152014
 

beet root baby foodBeet Baby Food

Purple beets have such a lovely spring color.  I thought it would be nice to do an informative post on beet baby food – How to select the beets, how to prepare them, how to store them and why they are so gosh darn good for your baby.

How old to feed baby beets and why are beets so good for baby

The prevailing wisdom tell us baby must be 8- 10 months months old to eat cooked beats.  I say keep it safe and use the nine month mark as your guide.  Raw and grated beets, a bit more rare to feed baby, is for the 10-11 month old. Although beets are not one of EWG’s dirty dozen, there is a nitrate issue with beets.  By 9 month’s old however, that nitrate  risk is no longer an issue.  Beets are so darn healthy for baby (and you too!) because they contain calcium, potassium, Vitamin A and high fiber.  With such a great nutrition report card, I know you are excited to get started feeding beets to your baby.

The ins and outs of feeding your baby beets

Grated beets can be fed to your baby raw. Cooked beets are tasty and very colorful. They can be used as a decorative touch or even a food coloring in baby’s food. Beets do stain, so use a good bib when feeding your baby beets. Beet stains are impossible to get out of cloth, plastic surfaces and wood. Stool alert: Be aware that several hours after your baby eats beets, her stool will be quite red in color.

Choosing and Storing Beets 

Equivalents: 6 medium beets = 1 pound = 2 cups sliced.

In season: Available year round; peak June through October.

Choosing: Beets are sold with or without their green tops. The tops, called “beet greens,” should be fresh-looking, thin-ribbed, and deep green, with no brown or red edges, and with no trace of slime. If they are a little wilted, the flavor of the red root should not be affected because the greens rapidly deteriorate while the root remains good. Beet greens are edible.

Beets without their greens should have at least 1⁄2 inch of stem left on top and their bottom roots should be at least two inches long. The bulbous root should have a lush, deep red color and smooth, firm skin with no cuts or soft spots. Roots should have no scaly areas or circles on the top and they should be a nice round shape, not elongated.

Buy small to medium-sized beets, as large beets tend to be tough with inedible, woody cores.

Storing: As with other root vegetables, immediately remove the greens so that they do not pull moisture from the root. Leave an inch or two of stem on the root, or it will bleed during cooking. Store beets in the refrigerator wrapped in organic, bleach-free wax paper and then in a plastic bag for up to 10 days.

Preparing and cooking beets for baby food preparation

Preparation for cooking: Scrub well under cold-running water.

Steam: Wonderful for holding in nutrients but you need the time, it takes about 60 minutes!

Boil: Simmer whole beets for two hours. Peels will easily come off and juices will be better retained in whole beets.

Bake: Wash thoroughly, place on a baking sheet and bake at 400°F for 90 minutes to two hours—the larger the beets, the longer the baking time.

Peel and purée: After cooking beets, remove stems. If you wish, slip off peels under cold running water before puréeing.

Freezing: Use the Baby Food Cube Method or Tray-Freeze Method, and keep for up to 2 months.  Remember to store in a stainless steel ice cube tray and then store in a organic waxed paper lined plastic freezer bag.

For even more information, take a peek at Super Baby Food, 3rd edition. It includes a complete alphabetical list of fruits and vegetables with same information included as shown above!

 

Amara Organic Dried Baby Food Apple and Banana Giveaway *Closed*

 baby's first foods, giveaway, Moms Want to Know About, organic baby food  Comments Off on Amara Organic Dried Baby Food Apple and Banana Giveaway *Closed*
Mar 132014
 

This Giveaway is Closed..Winners shown below.  Thanks for participating!

I am so lucky to be exposed to some terrific baby food products because of the writing of Super Baby Food.   One of those great products is Amara, an organic dried baby food product.  Busy moms are always looking for ways to feed on the go when necessary – for day trips or traveling or simply when in a pinch.  Amara organic food pouches are a convenient, clever way to feed baby organic food.  With this giveaway, Amara is offering five winners their apple and  banana baby food pouches.

Amara dried organic food is easy to prepare. Amara tells us, “Simply add breast milk, formula, or water and it’s ready for your baby to eat! Our lightweight pouch slips into your pocket or purse and is the perfect way to guarantee a wholesome meal for your baby without the hassle.”

You can learn more about Amara and the products they offer at their baby food link.

The Amara  giveaway will reward five winners each with both a banana and an apple serving. Giveaway begins today and ends March 20th at midnight…tell all your friends!  Winners must live in US  or Canada to be eligible to win!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Mar 052014
 

Vitamin Supplements for Baby

My fans are the best…very smart and very hip. Recently, I was asked a question about suggestions for vitamin supplements for baby. As I write in Super Baby Food, I always suggest checking first with your pediatrician and here is why. There are very specific amounts of vitamin D, zinc, iron and other nutrients recommended for babies at certain ages by the American Pediatric Association.  I wrote about vitamin D and breastfeeding in a previous blog and want to mention how important iron supplements are for your baby too!

It is very important that your baby gets enough iron, but not too much. Too much can cause baby constipation and other problems. Iron is very important, though. Red blood cells need iron to transport oxygen throughout baby’s body for growth and development. Iron is the most common nutritional deficiency in babies, which is why many commercial baby foods are fortified with it.

How can you be sure that your baby is getting enough iron?

The new mandatory Nutrition Facts Panel on packaged foods makes it easier to see just how much iron your baby is eating. Fresh homemade food does contain iron, but if your baby is eating all homemade baby food, and especially if your baby is a vegetarian, ask your pediatrician about over-the-counter supplemental iron drops.

Have you recently got a advice from your pediatrician on vitamin supplement drops for your baby?  Share with us!

Feb 122014
 

I know YOU love and trust Super Baby Food and YOUR stamp of approval is all I need. It is nice, however, to be recognized by the rest of the world.

Super Baby Food, 3rd edition has won the Gold Family Choice Award and the Gold Feathered Quill Award!

To celebrate the awards and Valentine’s day I am giving away 5 copies of the new edition.  Contest will end Feb 17th and is open to US and Canada residents.  Check back here for the winners on Monday!

This offer is now CLOSED. Thank you for all your wonderful comments. Winners have been contacted by email.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Jan 172014
 

Happy New year, Super Baby Food fans! It is a whole new year and you have decided to try making your own baby food. Good for you and your family!  You will soon learn that it is much easier than you thought to make organic, homemade, tasty baby food.  Before you get started, though, here are a few safety measures to keep in mind and put into practice when making your own baby food.  For those of you who already do make your own baby food, consider this a mini-refresher course.  Please add your own additional safety ideas and tips in the comment section.

Baby Food Preparation Safety TIps

  • Wash your hands…So simple, I know, but always the first step!  Wash, wash, wash!
  • Wash your produce – both fruits and vegetables – even if it is organic…wash, wash, wash.  As you may already know some fruits and vegetables are ‘dirtier” than others…Check out EWG’s dirty dozen and clean 15 for a refresher.
  • Thoroughly clean all food preparation surface areas and utensils with hot, soapy water – the counter surfaces, the high chair tray surface and all of your utensils and operating equipment, including blenders, food processors, etc. (For more information on high chair safety click on the link.)
  • Beware of bacteria! Moisture and warmth can equal bacterial growth! Yuck! To get food cooled as quickly as possible, store it in small and/or shallow containers (you know from the 3rd edition of Super Baby Food that I prefer glass or stainless steel containers)
  • Do not leave prepared baby food at room temperature for more than a few minutes. Serve it right away or freeze it for later use.
  • Thaw all foods in the refrigerator and never refreeze food that has been cooked then frozen and then thawed.

Baby Food Precautions

  • Baby food can be spoiled without necessarily smelling bad. When in doubt, throw it out.
  • Any leftover homemade or commercial baby food or juice that has come in contact with your baby’s saliva must be discarded.
  • Commercial baby food jars (I know you are only using commercial baby food in a pinch;)) must “pop” when opened to insure the content’s freshness!
  • If commercial infant/baby/toddler cereal has been mixed with liquid, serve it immediately and discard the leftovers.

For many more safety tips on baby food preparation safety and baby food safety, be sure to check out the new edition of  Super Baby Food, now available on Smashwords!  There are  three chapters in an entire section of the book dedicated to safety. It is very important! Please share your own safety tips developed along the way with me!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Dec 162013
 

Baby Led Weaning

Super Snacks are an important part of the Super Baby Food diet.  Both in the morning and in the afternoon, super snacks (finger foods) can be fed to your older baby or toddler to maintain a balanced nutritional diet every day.

Just as breakfast, lunch, dinner, breast milk and/or formula meals are important, so too, is the importance of the super snack.  The common baby and toddler snack ideas are well known and include: cheerios, oatios, whole grain crackers, soft ripe pieces of fruits, etc.

Below are some out-of-the box super snack ideas that might turn your usual idea of “snack” for baby on its ear! Have you considered…

  • small tofu chunks
  • crumbled egg pieces, cooked solid or scrambled
  • well-cooked, small wheat pasta pieces
  • bits of well-cooked french toast
  • small lumps of cottage cheese, mixed with wheat germ, rolled in a ball
  • small pieces of soft cheese
  • Clean and cook vegetables until they are soft and cut into small pieces no larger than a Cheerio.
A list of additional snack ideas as well as what I like to call “Toddler Hors d’oeuvres” can be found in the latest edition of Super Baby Food.  Check the back on the blog for additional recipe ideas now and again. I will continue to post many of my favorites.

Have you come up with some super snack ideas that your baby loves?  Share them!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Dec 042013
 

Spirulina Powder

Spirulina is a nutritional enhancer that can be added to baby food (and adult food) and adds super nutrition to any meal. It is a blue green algae that springs from warm, fresh water bodies. This sounds exotic, but was is really exotic is what it can do for your baby and for you! Spirulina is a terrific source of protein, reinforces the immune system, protects folks from cancer, contains GLA, an essential fatty acid that is found only in mother’s milk and is a fabulous source of vitamin B and B complex to boot.

It is very easy to add spirulina to baby food and adult meals, simply sprinkle into your recipe and let the nutritional benefits abound.  For baby, at about 6 months (ask your pediatrician, of course), start with just 1/4-1/2 teaspoon stirred into pureed foods, cereal and/or smoothies! For adults, try 1 to 2 teaspoons a day.  Spirulina powder, like as found at GNC (Spiru-Tein) is also a popular way for adults to add spirulina to their diets!  Just add one scoop and you are ready to go.

As if the nutritional benefits were not enough to get you excited about adding spirulina to your diet, I found an article by terranut.com that extols the following benefits of Spirulina, you can read the entire article at the link.

Terranut tells us that spirulina benefits include:

1 Cleansing: Spirulina promotes the body natural cleansing processes. You feel fitter, more cheerful, and you have more energy.

2. Restoring: Spirulina compensates for deficiencies in the diet and stimulates the metabolism. Your physical condition improves noticeably and you recover faster after exertion.

3. Fortifying: Spirulina boosts resistance and activates the body natural defense mechanisms. You feel stronger and are better able to cope with the pressures of everyday life.

Because of its cleansing, restoring and fortifying functions, Spirulina has a wide range of applications. It gives you new energy without taking pep-ups and makes you more alert and stable.

I know you are excited now!  Who does not want to feel peppy and more alert and stable.

To feed spirulina to baby try combining:

1/4 Cup applesauce

1/2 tsp spirulina

1/2 mashed avocado

As you can guess by the above example, the possibilities for baby food recipes using spirulina are endless.  Mamanatural.com posts a fantastic recipe for a tropical spirulina smoothie that she swears her picky baby loves! If you would like more example of adult spirulina recipes, I found a post by naturalhealthychoices.weebly.com that lists several great ones including Spirulina Salsa, Guacamole, and Vegetable spirulina Stir Fry.

Have you discovered any great spirulina baby food recipes?  Share them!

 

 

Nov 192013
 

Quinoa, a seed, is a complete protein perfect for baby food

In my last blog post I covered  chia seeds, flaxseeds, and tahini (seasame seeds) and revealed how they may be prepared for baby food.  I saved another seed for it’s own blog post becasue of the sheer overwhelming healthy, nutritive value of it…You might have guesssed I am talking about quinoa.

Quinoa, commonly referred to as a grain is actually a seed!  It is a very special seed. Quinoa’s roots are Incan and its nutritive value, particularly its protein value is out of this world.  It is considered a complete protein (all of the essential amino acids are represented and in correct proportions) and 1/2 cup will fulfill a child’s daily protein needs.

Quinoa fun facts:

  • Quinoa is the seed of the Chenopdium or Goosefoot plant.
  • Quinoa is pronounced “Keen-wah”
  • Quinoa has a mild and slightly nutty flavor
  • When quinoa is cooked whole it has the texture of couscus
  • Beets, spinach, and swiss chard are all relatives of quinoa
  • Quinoa varieties include pale seeds, red seeds, and black seeds
  • Quinoa can be toasted, sprouted, grinded and then cooked or cooked whole.
Quinoa baby food preparation

For a baby, the healthy effects of eating quinoa are fantastic as you may have already guessed. I suggest grinding the quinoa to a powder, just as I suggest preparing super porridge brown rice cereal or super porridge oatmeal. Cook the powder (1 cup ungrounded) in two cups of boiling water, whisking throughout the cooking process to prevent lumps.  As always, you may cook the quinoa whole and then blend to desired consistency for your 8 month old.  Mixing the quinoa porridge with fruit, vegetables, or yogurt is always a good idea.

Unprepared quinoa should be stored in a cool dry place. Quinoa super porridge may be frozen.  Moms have had some terrific results with freezing quinoa but the defrost time may be a longer than with super porridge. You may also prepare a few 1/2 cup batches and place in the fridge for a few days at a time. There are unlimited baby food recipes that you can create using Quinoa.  Have you had any luck preparing quinoa for your baby?  Share your recipe with me!

 

 

Chia Seeds, Flax Seeds, and Tahini Super Baby Food | How-to and Nutritional values

 baby cereal, baby's first foods, Moms Want to Know About, seeds, Super Baby Food  Comments Off on Chia Seeds, Flax Seeds, and Tahini Super Baby Food | How-to and Nutritional values
Nov 112013
 

 

Seeds are a super healthy part of your baby’s Super Food Diet

Seeds may be the very last food on a parent’s list when considering first solid foods for their baby and then later, their toddler.  They might want take another look at seeds and add them to the very top of their list! Seeds are jammed packed with precious nutrients that can provide an easy healthy boost to any meal.

The history of the seed

It makes sense that seeds are chock full of goodies.  Think about it. If a seed is placed in the ground, it grows! If a seed is placed in water, it sprouts! Nature must have put a concentrated store of nutrients in the seed, which can grow a new plant with no soil and nothing more than plain water.    The seed is the nucleus of a plant, the part that maintains survival of the species, and the part that is most important to nature.  If there is a variation and lack of nutrients in the soil, the other plant parts suffer at the expense of the seed.  In infertile soil, the roots forage for every trace nutrient they can find in order to first form the seed.  The seed is life itself! Fascinating, is it not?

How to add seeds to your baby’s prepared food

There are many seeds that you could add to your child’s diet.  I would like to share three in this post: chia seeds, seasame seeds (in the form of tahini), and flax seeds. Most pediatricians agree that you can add these three seeds (one of a time, of course) to your baby’s diet at eight months of age.  Check with your pediatrican before feeding as always.  I suggest grinding chia seeds and flax seeds immediately before serving to your baby, as the unground seed could be a choking hazard and the most nutitinonal value will be delivered when the seeds are ground.  As well, seeds become rancid quickly so best to grind and serve!

Chia Seeds, Flax Seeds, and Tahini (seasame seeds in paste form)

Chia Seed Nutritional Value

Chia seeds have become very popular and it is no wonder.  Just some of the nutritional benefits of chia seeds include: Omega 3 Fatty Acid, anti-oxidants, fiber, and protein. Grind chia seeds to a fine powder and sprinkle on your baby’s yogurt, oatmeal super porridge, and atop soft or pureed fruit.

Flax Seeds

Flax seeds contain omega 3 fats, manganese, Vitamin B1 and antioxidant properties, just to name a few of its goodies.  I recommend grinding flax seeds in a blender immediately before feeding and then add to scrambled eggs, yogurt, pancakes, etc.

Tahini (Seasame Seeds in paste form)

Tahini touts iron, calcium, phosphorous, zinc, B1, and dietary fiber as a few of it’s beneficial nutrients. Since tahini is sesame seeds ground into a butter it is super convenient to easily add to your baby’s yogurt, super porridge, practically anything that you can add a spread to!

If  you have experience feeding seeds to YOUR baby, share what you have found works best.  What other foods can you stir ground seeds into?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Easy Apple Puree | Baby’s First Foods

 baby's first foods, Moms Want to Know About, Super Porridge  Comments Off on Easy Apple Puree | Baby’s First Foods
Nov 042013
 

‘Tis the season for apples, that is for sure!  Apple puree is a terrifc choice for a first food as part of a healthy Super Baby Food Diet.  Apples are so nutritious.  You can feed apple puree to baby starting from 6 months.

Apples are steeped in vitamins and minerals……They don’t say “an apple a day, keeps the doctor away” for no reason!

Livestrong.com tells us that apples are a good source of vitamin C.  Our  bodies “needs vitamin C, also known as ascorbic acid, to synthesize collagen, a component of tendons, ligaments, blood vessels, skin and cartilage. Vitamin C also helps repair and maintain bones and teeth and helps wounds to heal. As an antioxidant, vitamin C protects DNA by reducing the harmful effects of free radicals, which are unstable molecules that help age the body and contribute to the development of diseases.” All pretty good reasons to eat apples, right?

To begin making apple puree for your baby choose from these sweeter apples:

Golden delicious, Red Delicious, Braeburn and/or Gala apples.  Honeycrisp and empire work, too!

Select Apples that are smooth without bruises and very firm…no yielding when pressed!

Remember that apples are part of the “dirty dozen” (pesticide risk) according to the EWG so an organic choice is best!

 

Apple Puree for Baby

  • Wash and Peel 2 Medium sized apples
  • Core and chopped apple into pieces
  • Place apple pieces in covered pot with 1 1/2 tablespoons of water
  • Cook over low-medium heat for 4 minutes
  • Pour apple pieces and water / juice into blender to Puree

You can freeze puree using the Food Cube Method for up to two months.

Serve apple puree alone as part of a super meal or add to super porridge!

What is your favorite way to pair apple puree with other foods for your baby? Have you ever tried to pair apple puree with a vegetable?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Oatmeal Super Porridge Baby Food Plus Healthy Extras, Starring Kale

 baby cereal, baby's first foods, kale, Super Porridge  Comments Off on Oatmeal Super Porridge Baby Food Plus Healthy Extras, Starring Kale
Oct 282013
 

Oatmeal is a super healthy whole grain and a terrific first baby food. With recent concerns about arsenic levels in white and brown rice, oatmeal is a great choice as a Super Porridge baby food base. Oatmeal for baby food differs from oatmeal that you might make for yourself as an instant breakfast on the run. Oatmeal for baby is comprised of whole grain oats that look similar to brown rice grains or old-fashioned rolled oat flakes.  Oat flakes are made from whole grain oats that have been steamed and flattened.

Whole grain oats have fiber, calcium, protein and vitamin b vitamins.  It is often not an allergen and has been found to relieve constipation in babies.  You can find rolled oats or “oat groats” at your local health food store and more recently (hurray!) in the organic section of your grocery store. Bob’s Red Mill is a brand that carries groats and rolled oats and can be purchased online. I have recently seen this brand on the end of grocery isles.

Below, I describe the preparation of Oatmeal Super Porridge appropriate to feed your baby at 6 months old as part of the Super Baby Food Diet. Adding a bit of mashed babana and or yogurt can boost the nutritional value of the Oatmeal Super Porridge.  At 9 months, you could also add the new favorite  “super green” –  steamed, puréed Kale.

To Prepare Super Porridge with Oatmeal:

➢ Place a cup of water on the stove to boil
➢ While it is heating put 1/4 cup of rolled oats or oat groats in the blender and grind to a fine powder, approximately 2 minutes.
➢ Whisk the oat powder into the water and let it sit over low heat for 10 minutes. Whisk frequently to prevent lumps. Add breast milk or formulas to reach the appropriate consistency for your baby and serve.

 

To Prepare Kale to add to Oatmeal Super Porridge when baby is 9 months old or older:

➢ Select kale that is loose and not in plastic bags, if at all possible
➢ Wash each leaf thoroughly under cold water
➢ Discard unwanted leaves
➢ Remove stems
➢ Steam leaves for 5 minutes, reserving the liquid
➢ Place pieces in blender with some reserved liquid
➢ Purée away!
➢ At this point in preparation, it would be perfect to add the puréed kale to a stainless steel ice cube tray for freezing for later use.

A word on kale. Kale is, in my opinion, the most super of the Super Green Veggies. Kale has so many wonderful nutrients including fiber, calcium, Vitamin B6, magnesium, Vitamins A, C and K, copper, potassium, iron, manganese, and phosphorus.Its strong flavor makes Oatmeal Super  Porridge perfect to mix with it.

You can add almost any age-appropriate food to Oatmeal Super Porridge.  I am interested in your “blending” discoveries.  What combinations have worked for you and your baby?

 

Sep 092013
 

 Super Baby Food is officially released today!

We promised that the release of Super Baby Food 3rd edition would afford you many opportunities to win your very own copy.

We have a sensational list of bloogers who love Super Baby Food as much as you do and have been patiently awaiting the release of the 3rd edition! Each will do giveaway.

Take a look at the dates they will post their giveaway and/or review and put your hat in the ring for a chance to win a free copy of Super Baby Food, 3rd edition.

Super Baby Food 3rd edition cover

Here are the sensational bloggers who have agreed to be a part of the Super Baby Food Blog Tour Review / Giveaway:

www.parentguidenews.com 9/9/13
www.naturalbabygoods.com 9/11/13
www.kaylaaimee.com 9/13/13
www.thebabybottomline.com 9/16/13
www.darcyandbrian.com 9/18/13
www.stephperson.com 9/19/13
www.babywisemom.com 9/20/13
www.mywisemom.com 9/23/13
www.intheplayroom.co.uk 9/24/13
www.astheygrowup.com 9/27/13
www.necessarystrangeness.com 9/30/13
www.ohmygoodiesfreebies.com 10/1/13
www.spacetospare.com 10/2/13
www.actingbalanced.com 10/4/13
www.reviewedbymom.com 10/5/13
www.couponswithcents.com 10/7/13

The New Super Baby Food Dazzling Prize Package Giveaway

 Moms Want to Know About, Ruth Yaron, Super Baby Food  Comments Off on The New Super Baby Food Dazzling Prize Package Giveaway
Aug 272013
 

The Super Baby Food Prize Package Giveaway is now <<CLOSED>>. Thank you for your participation! Congratulations to our FIVE winners who were notified by email!

Robin H, Gina B., Nicole B., Carolyn D., Anna Mae J.

As devoted fans of Super Baby Food, I know that you have been patiently waiting for an updated version of  your purple baby food bible! The time has come.

Super Baby Food, Third Edition, completely revised and updated, will be released on September 9th!

Super Baby Food cover

I could not be more excited to answer your demand for the most up-to-date medically and nutritionally sound information to feed your baby and toddler. The Third Edition has all the information you already LOVE about Super Baby Foodand so much more! Together we are better poised than ever to create the perfect, nutritionally superior bite for your babies and toddlers!

Although I am happy for you to purchase the new edition at any time, I want to encourage you to be one of the first people to benefit from the new edition by offering you a chance to win one of FIVE fantabulous Super Baby Food Mom/Baby Prize Packages!

Super Baby Food Giveaway Prize Package

Here is how you enter:

Pre-order Super Baby Food, Third Edition from one of the following places: Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Super Baby Store, Books-a-Million or Powell’s Books. (If you’ve already ordered, no worries!) (To enter with no purchase necessary send along an email to Claudine@superbabyfood.com with what you like best at SuperBabyFood.com!)

Forward your receipts (this will act as your entry) to claudine@superbabyfood.com to be entered to win one of Five Super Baby Food Prize Packages.

Winners will be picked randomly using randomizer.org on September 9, 2013 and will be announced right here on the Super Baby Food Blog and through email! Buy as many copies as you like for your friends, mom-club members, family, co-workers – each purchase is an entry!

Contest is open to anyone in the US and Canada.

Announcing the Super Baby Food Prize Package:

We love this Zoli OHM Baby Changing Pad. Not only does it look great, it is a tool that you will use again and again. Using Baby OHM gives you peace of mind and also helps your baby stay “centered” during changing time with the non-toxic, non-slip material.

Zoli Gum massagers are the best! Gummy Sticks have ergonomic handles so it is easy for babies to hold and textured nubs to gently massage gums and teeth. Easy to grasp handle is reminiscent of toothbrushes helping to establish early dental hygiene. The anti-choke prevents over-insertion. (Set of 2)

For baby food preparation, there is no better or safer way to freeze Super Baby Food Cubes than using a stainless steel ice cube tray. This tray is easy-to-use, and non-toxic. It works like a dream and protects you and your loved ones from the toxic effects of BPA.

 

 

A signed copy of the new Super Baby Food. We know that you just purchased one, Silly! Tuck away that one for your next baby shower and place this signed copy on your kitchen counter!

Sephora Gift Card

A $50 gift card to Sephora. This one is just for you. Use it to buy something pampering like Philosophy Pure Grace Shower Gel, or snag the latest Fall eye shadow stick or lip gloss. No one has to know what you choose!

Pretty cool Prize Package, huh? I want you to be as excited as I am.

Want to read a chapter of the book before you buy? Check out this sample chapter.

Want to share some love about Super Baby Food? Go here.

Want me to let you go so you can buy the brand new edition of Super Baby Food and enter to win the Super Baby Food Prize Package? Of course you do! Go get it!

AmazonBarnes & NobleSuper Baby StoreBooks-a-Million or Powell’s Books

Thank you for participating and celebrating with me! Check back on September 9th to see the Prize Package Giveaway winners and for more ways to win a free copy of Super Baby Food!

Best,

Ruth Yaron

Sep 272012
 

Recently, rice has been found to contain arsenic.  There is plenty of information online, and you’ll find that the amount of arsenic in different types of rice varies greatly.  Although doctors on TV and other sources have been telling us it’s still OK to still eat rice, why take the chance–especially with our babies!    I recommend not eating any rice when there are so many other whole grains available.  That goes for any foods containing rice–infant cereal, breakfast cereal, brown rice syrup, cooked rice, granola with rice, rice milk, etc.–read the ingredients list on the label.

A healthy diet is about variety.  Just as babies (and adults) should eat a variety of organic fruits and veggies to help ensure we get a vast array of nutrients, we should eat a variety of organic whole grains and legumes (beans, peas, lentils).  You shouldn’t feed carrots, and only carrots. to your baby for veggies and you shouldn’t feed only brown rice for whole grains.

The Super Baby Food Diet is about eating a vast array of healthy organic whole foods.  Quinoa, millet, and oats are other super whole grains recommended for Super Porridge, as well as those listed in the Super Baby Book on page 222. Page 235 has a list of legumes.  On page 215, see my tips for mixing several whole grains and legumes together to ensure your baby will have a variety of these foods in their high-protein Super Porridge (2 parts grains + 1 part legumes).  Make Super Porridge even more healthy by sprinkling freshly-ground seeds and nuts (if your baby has no allergies) into cooked Super Porridge.  (Freshly-ground immediately before feeding because once seeds and nuts are cracked open, their super healthy oils/fats start becoming rancid.)  See Page 135 for a list of seeds and nuts.  If you can’t find these foods in your supermarket, visit your local natural foods store.  You can also find these foods online; you’ll have to pay shipping, but you might find it’s worth it when you consider your time and energy, since you don’t have to use gas and bundle up baby or get a sitter.  (I always buy from www.BreadBeckers.com, a website you can trust for only the highest quality foods.)  You may even want to join a food coop to buy in bulk and save $.

Parents who are concerned because they have been feeding large amounts of brown rice to their babies should talk with their pediatricians.  Rice is one of the grains that is gluten-free, therefore many people might be eating it frequently.  The American Academy of Pediatrics has information about arsenic at http://www.aap.org; search for “arsenic.”  We should expect more information about arsenic in rice as more studies are completed.

Mar 202012
 

As you may have guessed, Super Baby Food by Ruth Yaron is a popular parenting “must have” for hundreds of thousands of parents in the US and Canada.

Did you also know that Super Baby Food is requested all over the world?

Although we do not have an edition of Super Baby Food available everywhere in the world – yet – we are working on it. To that end, Ruth is pleased to announce  the Romanian edition of the book.  We are so pleased to be able to reach the parents in Romania and are working hard to reach parents anywhere in the world who want to learn to feed their baby through the use of Super Baby Food!

Mar 182012
 

In a recent blog post, Ruth answered a question about feeding raw parsley to baby where she mentioned phytonutrients.  When it comes to phytonutrients (organic components of plants…thought to promote human health – thanks for the definition, WebMD!), which get destroyed during cooking, she mentions that it is better to use raw or steamed greens. Always remember to check the age-appropriateness of raw foods for your baby, though.  As Ruth mentioned with parsley – no raw parsley until baby is 9 months old!

Phytonutrients are the big thing now that have been discovered and proven in studies to really be good for you, although not all are “essential” for life. They are the plant nutrients that you may have been hearing about – lutein, lycopene, etc.. The supplement manufactures have jumped in head first and there are now lots of pills with phytonutrients, but don’t use the supplements. Use real whole food, which will have the entire realm of related phytonutrients in the proper proportions.

There’s lots of info on the net, but use only trusted sites that use scientifically proven info. Here’s a page you can trust: http://www.ars.usda.gov/aboutus/docs.htm?docid=4142   You are sure to hear more about phytonutrients from us in the near future!

 

Mar 112012
 

On CBS’s Sunday morning this past week, Cindy Crawford was featured. We love Cindy Crawford and not just because she is a fan of Super Baby Food and appeared with Ruth Yaron on a segment of Good Morning America, but also because she’s a wonderful gal..smart, bright, caring, and a giver.

The recent piece on CBS’s Sunday Morning highlighted Cindy Crawford’s charity work in honor of her brother who died at a young age from Leukemia. She is genuinely beautiful on the inside and out.

We thought it would be appropriate to share the segment of Good Morning America where Cindy teaches Charlie Gibson, and of course, the audience, how to make our favorite, Super Porridge! Enjoy!

Mar 072012
 

We love when Moms ask Ruth questions because (1) the questions are always so great and (2) we feel that that for every question asked, thousands of other parents have the same question and will have their question answered! A mom recently asked the following question to Ruth about parsley.

Moms asks:

Hi Ruth. My son is almost 8 mos. old. I’m reading your chapter (in Super Baby Food) about what to feed at 8mos and love the idea of throwing some cooked parsley in the mix, but I’m confused. You say that at 8 months they should only eat cooked parsley, but you also say that cooked parsley tastes bitter. Do you think the cooked parsley mixed with something sweet, like sweet potato will mask the bitterness?
Or should I wait until he can eat it raw? Thanks.

Ruth says:

Absolutely you could mix the cooked parsley in with sweet potatoes and other things he likes to decrease bitterness. However, he can eat it raw soon (by 9 months) but you have to be careful to wash it thoroughly, as with all raw produce, because his little immune system is still immature. I wouldn’t use a microwave – steam it instead.

Here is more interesting information:

Within the last few weeks I read where microwave ovens destroy more of some phytonutrients than steaming. Organic produce is best and is definitely worth the extra dollars in my opinion because babies don’t eat too much and pesticides get concentrated in their little bodies since they eat lots of food for their little sizes.  Make sure it has the certified organic symbol.

I’m finding out that raw parsley is up there with kale, maybe even better, and you know how I adore kale if you read my section in Super Baby Food on Super Greens. 🙂 AND now the AAP says spices (super sources of phytonutrients) are OK for babies starting around 6 months. Don’t use imported spices which may contain heavy metals. Frontier is a nice organic brand you can trust.

Jan 282012
 

Dr Greene.com recently asked Ruth to be a special guest perspectives blogger on their informational website.  Ruth was more than happy to provide 5 terrific blog posts sharing all kinds of great, detailed information on finger foods and tips for getting started with finger foods for babies and toddlers. In case you missed it, here is a description and a link to each fantastic blog post.

Finger Foods: What They Are And Why They Are Important To Your Baby’s Diet

Getting Started With Finger Foods

Finger Food Ideas For Baby and Toddler: Fruits, Whole Grains, and Vegetables

Baby and Toddler Finger Food Ideas Galore: Proteins, Dairy, Omega 3 Healthy Fats

Baby and Toddler Finger Food Ideas Galore: Seeds and Dips

Super Baby Food is happy to be a part of the Dr. Greene team! Be sure to check out some of the other terrific information on Dr. Greene’s website.

Jan 272012
 

Super Baby Food loves Dr. Greene. Below is a video which announces Dr. Greene’s White-out campaign.

To learn more about The White Out Campaign, you can visit Dr. Greene’s website: DrGreene.com.

Dec 132011
 

babies drinking waterHere’s a question from a Mom regarding Super Baby Porridge and other Super Baby Food Purees and getting the consistency just right.

Mom asks:

Does it really matter what you use to get your purees to the right consistency? My son is exclusively breastfed and I just about never pump, so it seems like such a pain to pump just to make his food. Is water perfectly fine. I have to give him water when he starts solids anyways right?

Ruth says:

Pure water is fine to puree with. Also, your baby should get used to drinking plain water, instead of sugary juices. Use only milk or water in his sippy cup or bottle.

Your quick Super Baby Food tip for the day.  Please feel free to add your own comments about what works for you.

Dec 092011
 

In case you did not see the Martha Stewart Show where Ruth and Super Baby Food is featured, you can see it below along with a demonstration of very simple, but delicious, apple sauce recipe. Enjoy!

Nov 292011
 

Ruth Yaron’s appearance on the Martha Stewart Show, as we have been proudly mentioning, was aired Monday, at 10 am and 2pm on the Hallmark Channel.

Martha introduced Ruth and prepared a recipe for baby “pink applesauce” that is now featured on her website.  We thought it would be fun to ask Ruth a couple of questions about her visit with Martha.  Her answers may surprise you. The answers are also a great conversation starter for those holiday dinners when you need something witty to contribute to the conversation.

You can visit the Martha Stewart Website for more information on the episode that featured Super Baby Food here.

Question for Ruth:

Can you tell us one thing about Martha Stewart that you didn’t know before you met her?

Ruth says:

I never knew she was a professional model.  She has photos on the walls in the hallway behind the stage.  She is as beautiful in person as she is on TV and in the pictures of her in the media and in her books.  She is a natural beauty.

Question for Ruth:

What was your favorite part of meeting Martha Stewart?

Ruth says:

Meeting THE Martha Stewart.   I loved watching all the activity behind the scenes while the show was being taped.  Every one of her staff was professional, very kind, and organized and they all worked together perfectly, like a well-oiled machine.  They were all very capable and extremely efficient without rushing anyone, and they had a great sense of humor and an easiness about them.   They enjoyed me kidding around saying stuff like, “What do you say when you meet Martha Stewart?  ‘Hello, your majesty!’ with a curtsy? (which I did NOT say to her, by the way).”  It was really an all-around fabulous experience and I had fun being a part of it.

How is that for some Martha Stewart Trivia? Martha was, indeed, a model for Chanel. Check out this link which shows the proof!

Thanks to all the Super Baby Food fans who tuned into the show and told all their friends.  You are the best!

Nov 232011
 

Super Baby Food wishes everyone a very Happy Thanksgiving!

In keeping the spirit of Thanksgiving and of course, the tradition of Black Friday, Super Baby Food is running a contest on its Facebook page on Black Friday.  We are going to give away a copy of Super Baby Food and a Toys R Us gift card to FIVE winners.

To enter, simply respond to the question we post on our Facebook Page Friday Morning.  The good news is, there is no incorrect answer – all answers are correct!  We will announce the five winners on our Facebook Page on Saturday morning.  Take advantage of this contest to jump-start to your holiday shopping!

PS.  Don’t forget to watch Ruth Yaron on the Martha Stewart Show, Tuesday, 11/28 at 10 est on the Hallmark Channel!

Nov 152011
 

In a recent comment a mom asks about dessicated liver.  We thought it was a great question and that we would ask Ruth for her thoughts…

The mom asks:

I really love your book. Thanks for such a great work.

I’d like to start using desiccated liver powder for my 8 months old daughter but I cant find the powder version of it,  all I can find is the tablet version.

Can you recommend a brand/company who makes powder form of the desiccated liver?

Thnx.

Ruth Says:

Desiccated liver is a powdered nutritional supplement made from dried liver.  It is high in vitamin B12 (a nutrient sometimes claimed to be lacking in vegetarian diets) and other B vitamins. You can introduce desiccated liver to your baby beginning at about 8 months.  Add 1/2 to 1 teaspoon to your baby’s  Super Porridge daily or several times a week to make up for whatever you feel your baby would be missing in a meatless diet.

I recommend the Now brand. Please go light on the liver powder so baby does not get too much iron.  The nutrition section of Super Baby Food discusses the daily recommended amounts of iron.  The iron is “heme” iron and is very well-absorbed, unlike iron from plants.  You can also buy the tablets and crush them by putting them in ziploc bag and crushing with a spoon

Check back at the Super Baby Food Blog for more information for feeding your baby the very best!

Oct 262011
 

It’s that time of year where everything seems to turn orange.  Celebrate Halloween with your little one with these Pumpkin themed toddler recipes from Super Baby Food!

Great Pumpkin Pancakes

1 beaten egg

1 cup canned pumpkin

2 tablespoons blackstrap molasses

1/2 cup Super Flour*

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice

Mix all ingredients in bowl and cook.   Top with a mixture of yogurt and orange juice concentrate

Pumpkin Custard

Preheat oven to 350 degrees

Combine:

1 1/2 cups canned pumpkin

1/2 cup honey

3 beaten eggs

1 1/3 cups milk

1 tablespoon arrowroot or cornstarch

1 teaspoon cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon ginger

1/4 teaspoon ground cloves

1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg

Pour into greased baking dish and bake for 45-50 minutes or until set.  Refrigerate, covered well, and eat within 2-3 days.  Serve cool.

Pumpkin Hors d’oeuvres

Mix together:

1 cup canned pumpkin

1 beaten egg

2 tablespoons milk

Form balls and roll in

1/2 cup whole wheat bread crumbs (or wheat germ) mixed with

1/2 teaspoon fresh finely minced parsley.

Bake or fry, making sure that egg gets thoroughly cooked.

We hope these Super Baby Food Halloween Toddler Recipes will help you and your family to celebrate!  Have a happy and delicious Halloween!

I Know We Don’t Like To Talk About It But…Here Are Some Thoughts On Baby Diarrhea

 baby diarrhea cures, diarrhea, Moms Want to Know About  Comments Off on I Know We Don’t Like To Talk About It But…Here Are Some Thoughts On Baby Diarrhea
Oct 142011
 

A Facebook Fan wrote to Ruth requesting information for her baby struggling with baby diarrhea.  We thought it might also be useful to our blog readers, too:

A Super Baby Food Mom asks:

I’ve read your book and it’s very interesting.  I’ve learned many things for my baby (she is 1 and 3 months)…We have a problem with diarrhea…can you tell me some ideas for food against diarrhea?  Thank you very much!

Ruth Says:

I don’t mean to worry you, but diarrhea can be dangerous to a baby. Babies get easily dehydrated. Is your pediatrician aware of this? Please be sure to discuss this with your baby healthcare provider.

Things that keep poop moving well are fiber and water. Apples and pears have the soluble fiber pectin. Oats have both soluble and unsoluble fiber. Lentils are good too. I would suggest feeding her oatmeal, lentils, and apples or pears and giving her a few tablespoons of pure water in a cup with each meal of solid foods. Watch carefully for signs of dehydration– http://pedialyte.com/ talks about dehydration in children.

Be sure to ask Ruth your questions through the SuperBabyFood site.

Oct 072011
 

tofu-recipe.jpgWe had a blog request for the Egg-less Salad Spread recipe found in Super Baby Food p.317.  We are happy to oblige.

Egg-less Salad Spread

Mix together:

1 pound tofu, crumbled

1/4 cup tofu mayonnaise

2 teaspoons prepared mustard

1/4 teaspoon garlic powder

1 green pepper, minced

1 celery stalk, finely chopped

1/2 medium onion, minced

1/2 teaspoon tamari

Enjoy!

Ruth Yaron Meets Martha Stewart at the Martha Stewart Show

 Martha Stewart Show, Ruth Yaron, Super Baby Food  Comments Off on Ruth Yaron Meets Martha Stewart at the Martha Stewart Show
Oct 062011
 

Does it get any more exciting than this?

Ruth Yaron, author of Super Baby Food got a chance to meet Martha Stewart, backstage, at the taping of the Martha Stewart Show where Super Baby Food is featured.

Martha is quoted as saying, Super Baby Food is fabulous!” The airing of the taped episode will be on November 28th at 10am, Est, on the Hallmark channel.  We will remind you when it gets closer to tune in!

In the meantime, how great is this picture?  Ruth and  Martha – perfect together, don’t you think?

Oct 042011
 

When parents consider making their own baby food the first concern is invariably:  Is it safe to make my own baby food? Or said another way…Is commercial baby food better for my baby?  Let Super Baby Food dispel the myths.

Myth #1: Commercial baby food is superior to homemade baby food.

The food that you make at home from fresh, whole vegetables and fruits is nutritionally superior to any jarred commercial variety on your grocer’s shelf.  The cereals you can quickly and easily make at home from brown rice (and other whole grains) cannot be compared to the processed, refined white rice commercial baby cereals.

Myth #2: It takes too much time to make homemade baby food.

Making homemade baby food is easier than you think.   Check out WholeParenting.com’s pictures showing how simple it can be to make your own nutritionally superior baby food.

Myth #3: Homemade baby food may cause my baby to get sick or get food poisoning.

Some parents think that there is something magical that goes into the preparation of commercial baby food that can not be done at home, which somehow makes it the only food suitable and safe for their baby. Not so, baby food can be made easily, nutritionally, and safely at home.

Myth #4: The convenience of commerical baby food is worth the price.

Actually, making your own baby food is the cheaper alternative.  Check out this handy dandy chart prepared by WholesomeBabyFood.com to see the price per baby food manufacturer as compared to homemade baby food from your ice cube tray.  Homemade baby food is much cheaper!

Can you think of any other myths surrounding commercial baby food vs baby food made at home?  Share them with us so we can dispel more myths!

Sep 282011
 

A Fan of Super Baby Food took the time to write a nice note expressing the reasons she loves Super Baby Food.  We hope you enjoy it as much as we did.  Thank you, Dacia, for your permission to reprint your kind words.

I just want you to know what an immense impact your book has made on my life.  I’m a research nut & the book saved me a lot of time.  Not only useful information, but well organized, user friendly and all-encompassing for all viewpoints or opinions.  The second reason it has impacted me is the support it has given me in embarking on homemade food & fully immersed nutrition.  Our society has evolved into consumers and we’ve become much too separated from our children’s nutrition.  I wanted to breast feed very badly and when I decided to make my own super baby food, I discovered the uncanny parallels the two have as far as stigmas and barriers.  I found support for breast feeding and now I’ve found support for super baby food & beyond.  What I’ve learned will go far beyond my child’s nutrition and even past our own dinner plates.

A couple years ago, my brother had mentioned possibly making his own baby food.  My silent reaction was “you can’t do that, it’s not that simple, baby food is fortified…”  Then I had my son 6 months ago and made my research and decisions.  I went to Borders and piled up 20 books to sift through before choosing yours since it wasn’t all pictures and glossy pages – LOTS of info and that’s it.  Then I went to the family meet & greet for my son’s daycare enrollment & they stated they provide Gerber foods.  I asked if I could bring my own in.  They just about gasped and said, well maybe if you had a Doctor’s note…  Can you believe it!  I pushed and spoke to the Director and they agreed if I would label the ingredients.  THEN, the following week, the teachers all huddled around me and detained me for a half an hour inquiring excitedly about home made baby food.  They just couldn’t get over how wonderful it was all of a sudden.  I’m glad I turned them on to it and plan on buying his two teachers copies of your book for Christmas.

I apologize for the windy feedback, but I really thought you’d enjoy the story as well.  Thanks for your work and for your time!

Dacia Volz
Dunmore, PA

Can anyone provide more words of support for Dacia?  Has anyone run in to the kind of reaction Dacia did at her day care regarding baby food?  How did you handle it?

Sep 192011
 

We have some exciting news! Super Baby Food will be featured on the new Martha Stewart Show,  on the Hallmark Channel. We will announce the airing as soon as we know the date! We are thrilled to be on the Martha Stewart show schedule and to reach millions of new parents.  To celebrate,  Super Baby Food is hosting a contest on Facebook and giving away 5 free copies of Super Baby Food.

Here’s how you enter to win a free copy of the book.

First, become a fan on our Facebook page!

Second, simply finish this ONE sentence on our Facebook post that explains the contest,  “I love Super Baby Food because…” The winners will be picked by the author Ruth Yaron and announced on Tuesday Morning, September 27th!  Good Luck and don’t forget to watch us on the Martha Stewart Show!

Sep 142011
 

Mom Asks:

How do you make prunes for a Super Baby who has constipation issues?

Ruth says:

You don’t tell me your Super Baby’s age, so I’ll assume he’s about 6 months.  It’s fabulous that you make almost all of his food!  Constipation is common but he should grow out it within a few days.

Two things keep poop moving smoothly–fiber and water.  So be sure to give him a few tablespoons of plain, pure water in a cup with each meal of solid foods.  This will help the constipation and teach him drinking, swallowing, and hand skills.  It will also get him used to plain water instead of sweet drinks or juice.  Nix the juice!

Prunes have the fiber needed for poop “building.”  It will make his poop softer, but not watery.  The fiber (pectin-a soluble fiber) in pears and apples will also help.  Try these fruits instead of the prunes and see if things get moving.  There is no fiber, NONE, in animal products – meat, dairy, fish.  It’s whole plant foods that have the healthy fiber we all need.  Fiber is found in whole grains, as in brown rice and Super Porridge, legumes (beans,peas, lentils), nuts, and seeds like pumpkin seeds and flax seeds – freshly ground.

Prunes are dried plums, just as raisins are dried grapes. If you have a good food dehydrator (I recommend the Excalibur brand), you can buy fresh plums and dehydrate into prunes. I LOVE my Excalibur and it has paid for itself several times over by just making fruit roll-ups (see instructions in book).

You can also make your own prune purees by buying dried prunes, soaking them in water in the fridge overnight to plump them, and pureeing with water and freeze using food cube method.  Depending on where you buy the dried prunes, you may save a lot of money.  Buy organic, of course!

Hope this helps.  Thanks so much for writing!!
🙂
Ruth

Aug 302011
 

You have spoken and we have listened.  We proudly present the Super Baby Food Daily Menu of the Super Baby Food Diet free for you to download at your leisure. In the second edition of  Super Baby Food, this sample menu is found on page 136.

This is our most recent download.  For other Super Baby Food Resources including the  The Super Baby Food Diet Daily Worksheet, check Ruth’s blog page “resources” under “about the book!”

We know the sample menu will help your meet all your Super Baby feeding needs! 

Moms Want To Know About Feeding Oatmeal to Baby

 baby food how to, Moms Want to Know About, Super Porridge  Comments Off on Moms Want To Know About Feeding Oatmeal to Baby
Aug 232011
 

Moms Want To Know About:

Feeding Oatmeal to their baby.

Mom Asks:

Is my 6 month old too young for oatmeal porridge?

Ruth says:

No, he’s not too young, you can start him on oatmeal Super Porridge, just make sure it’s very smooth so he won’t choke on any lumps.  Get the organic steel cut oats or just plain oatmeal flakes from the natural foods store or the part of the supermarket that has “health” foods.  Quick cook oatmeal or the brands processed with sugar aren’t as healthy as plain, unprocessed oatmeal.  It is perfectly normal and very common for babies to get constipated when they start eating solid foods, especially on whole grains because of the fiber.

Here’s what to do about constipation:  Feed him about 2 ounces of commercial jarred baby prunes with the oatmeal.  Only two ounces, though, or you’ll have poop up the back !  With each meal, offer your baby a few tablespoons of plain water in a cup.  Let him get used to and like drinking plain water, not juice.  Thanks for writing! 🙂

Aug 162011
 

Pureeing is all the rage and thank goodness.  With just a few tips under your belt, you can prepare your baby’s own food using organic, delicious vegetables and here’s the best part – you will know exactly what is in the food you give your baby!

Puree Basics

I will use the term “processor” to refer to your blender, your processor, your food mill, or whatever you’re using to puree.  To get the correct liquidy consistency necessary for beginner eaters, water must be added to the food mixture being processed.

Cook the vegetables

For most vegetables, use the water in which they were cooked, whether the water is from steaming, baking, or boiling.  This water containes valuable nutrients that have leached out of the vegetables during cooking.

Save the water

Pour the water from the cooking pot into a container with a spout so that it will be easy to pour into the processer.  I use a little glass measuring cup with a spout.

Puree Away!

Place chucks of cooked vegetables into the bowl of the processor so that it is almost full.  Make sure you leave some head room.  Add a tablespoon or two of the cooking water.  Cover, keep your hand on the lid, and start the processor.  Pour water very slowly throuugh the hole in the top of the processer until the food moves freely.  Use the least amount of water necessary to get the consistency you need for your baby’s age.  Use the Food Cube Freezing Method to store pureed baby food!  That’s it, you’ve done it!

For more tips on starting your baby on solids, try the Super Baby Food, iPhone App!

Aug 102011
 

My-Plate-new-nutritional-guideMom question:

I am finding your book (Super Baby Food) very interesting and helpful. I just noticed though that you were basing the Daily Food Servings on the Dept. of Agriculture’s Food Pyramid. I was just wondering since they have changed to the My Plate concept instead (making vegetables the largest food group instead of grains) if that has changed your thoughts on a baby’s grain intake as well. Thanks for the great book and place to start with making my own baby food!

Ruth Says:

Hi!
Thanks for using my book.  Actually the vegetables and fruits on the Food Pyramid, when taken together, are larger than the grains group.  Nothing has really changed about the number of servings recommended from each group.  The USDA says to make 1/2 your grain servings whole.  I say to make ALL your grains whole.  I recommend eating organic foods grown sustainably and as local as possible, especially the Environmental Working Group’s “dirty dozen,” which are the foods having the worst pesticides.  Google it and you’ll find a lot of information.  If you eat meat, be sure to buy only grass-fed, organically raised animal products: eggs, milk and cheese, fish, and meat.
Thanks for the question!
🙂

Aug 052011
 

A Mom Asks:

I am just beginning to feed my second child solid foods using your Super Baby Food book as a guide. Our CSA share this week included “vitamin greens” and I am wondering if they can be prepared as other greens and fed to my son when he is old enough for cooked greens. I also wonder about “bok choy”.  Thank you for your help, and for writing such an excellent resource for parents.

Ruth Says:

Vitamin greens (I don’t why they call them that since all green leafy vegetables are loaded with vitamins) and bok choy should be introduced to your baby just as any other veggies.  Use the 4-day wait rule.

Cook as you would kale.  Thanks for writing!

Jul 262011
 

Super Baby Food is trying to increase followers on Twitter. We want to reach as many parents as humanly possible to answer the all of their Super Baby Food questions!  In order to do that we are hosting a giveaway of three copies of Ruth Yaron’s Super Baby Food to be held over the next two weeks.

Enter for a chance to win a copy!  Follow us on Twitter and let us know with a comment that you did just that on this blog post with your Twitter name.  Enter as many times as you like by Tweeting with #Super_Baby_Food in tweets, or by “Liking us” on the Super Baby Food Fan page or by simply signing up for our blog feed.  Let us know that you have entered with a separate comment on this blog for each “entry” or action you have taken.

Three Winners will be announced on the SuperBabyFood blog on Friday, August 5th.  If you already have a copy of Super Baby Food, enter for a chance to win anyway. Super Baby Food makes a terrific gift for any new parent you know!  Thanks for participating. Happy Tweeting.

Disclosure: This giveaway is offered for US and Canada residents only!

Congratulations to our winners, announced August 5th:

Heather Brandt

Kendra Alexa

Jodi Brockway

and Karen!

Stay tuned for more giveaway offers in the coming months and thanks for participating!

Jul 232011
 

Mom asks:

You have many terrific recipes in your book, Super Baby Food. Can you suggest a Gluten Free alternative to Super Flour?

Ruth says:

Hi!
Flour for baking regular yeast breads pretty much has to be flour with gluten because the it’s the gluten (the protein in the flour) that raises breads.  The gluten has to be developed by kneading.  Bread rises when yeast eat starch and produce carbon dioxide as a byproduct and form tiny bubbles in the bread.  The developed stretchable gluten stretches to accommodate the bubbles, blow up a bit, and cause the bread to rise. So gluten is necessary for yeast breads that rise.

Wheat is the grain that has the most gluten.  Wheat flour used in yeast breads can be processed white flour or whole wheat flour–whole wheat flour is more nutritious but doesn’t rise as well as white flour.  Many recipes for homemade whole wheat bread or breadmaker recipes usually contain only some whole wheat flour, the majority being white flour.  White flour makes a light loaf.  Whole wheat flour doesn’t rise as well because of it’s course bran.

Quick breads, on the other hand, don’t really need the gluten as a leavening agent (an ingredient which makes dough rise).  The baking powder or baking soda reacts and bubbles up and causes the quick bread to rise a bit.  No gluten is needed because the powder/soda instead causes the bread to rise..  So you can use a GF flour to bake quick breads but not yeast breads.  You can use just about any flour–rice flour, garbanzo bean flour (the Spice Goddess on the cooking channel is big into garbanzo bean flour), quinoa flour, millet flour, and any flour that does not contain gluten.  Your natural foods store will have a nice variety and there will probably be an employee who can help you.

Good luck in your baking!  Thanks for writing.
🙂
Ruth

If you have your own question for Ruth, share it in our Superbabyfood.com contact form.

Jul 172011
 

Super Baby Food proudly presents three fantastic Ebooks available today on SuperBabyFood.com (and other online outlets) providing you with Super Baby Food tips on three very important topics:

Super Baby Food Quick Smart Guide ebookQuick Start Guide to Feeding Your Super Baby

Starting solids is an important time for parents and baby.  Find the answers to these and many other “starting solids” questions:

-How old should baby be to start solids?
-What exactly should I feed my baby?
-How can I keep my little guy safe when feeding?
-Is preparing my own baby food practical, inexpensive?

Super Baby Food Travel With Your Baby ebookTraveling & Restaurants with Your Super Baby

Every parent needs a break from homebase but the thought of venturing out with a baby can be daunting!  These Ebook tips can help you succeed!

-Packing your little one’s bag including a Master Pack List
-Tips for traveling around the corner and around the globe.
-Dining with your little one at a restaurant with ease!
-Smart helps to properly research your trip to insure a “family-friendly” trip


Super Baby Food Going Green ebookGoing Green for Your Super Baby

Going Green isn’t just fashion, it’s necessary – for you, your home, and for your baby.  This informative Ebook provides tips and information for every parent to “Go Green.”  Here is a preview of just a few of the topics covered:

-Why Organics is the way to go.
-Buying organic food – the how, the where, and the why
-Household cleaning products that are good for the  environment, too.
-Toys can be organic – here’s how.

To download your Super Baby Food Ebooks today, visit the Super Baby Food website today!

Jul 152011
 

A mom asks Ruth:

“You don’t mention phytic acid in your book (Super Baby Food), but I have read that its presence in whole grains can limit the absorption of nutrients.  Do you recommend sprouting grains before grinding them for super baby porridge, or soaking?  Thank you!

Ruth says:

Great question!  Actually, I sometimes do sprout my own grains before using them to bake bread or for porridge so that the phytic acid goes away and so that the nutrient content increases.  I also grind my own grains into flour for baking using the Whisper Mill or the Nutrimill grain grinders.  Grains must be totally dry before you use a grain mill or it gets ruined. I use an Excalibur dehydrator to dry my sprouted grains before grinding in my mill.

When soaked, the phytic acid takes a while to go away if the grains are whole kernels–about 8-12 hours.  However, the grains for Super Porridge are first ground to a powder, not a fine powder, but a powder.  The finer the powder, the faster the phytic acid disappears because more water comes into contact with the surface area of the powder.  For well-ground flour like you would use in breads, it takes only 5 minutes of soaking to remove the phytic acid.

Grinding the grains to a course powder is perfect for Super Porridge. Much of the phytic acid goes away when boiled in water, but some may remain.  Phytic acid is a phytonutrient that is good for us, so we should get some of it in our diets.

Because Super Porridge is only coarsely ground, it is low on the glycemic index scale, which is good.  The lower the GI, the better the food is for us because it doesn’t shoot up blood sugar and cause the pancreas to quickly produce lots of insulin.  An overworked pancreas can lead to insulin resistance and maybe even full-blown diabetes.

So the bottom line is, you can sprout your grains, but only for a day or so because otherwise they will be too difficult to grind with longer sprouts.  And the grains must be totally dry before you grind them.  If you don’t have a dehydrator, you can dry them in a low oven- at about 200 degrees so that all bacteria that might start growing are killed.

Happy sprouting and grinding!  Thanks for writing!


Jul 062011
 

When you start a baby on solid food for the very time, it is not always smooth sailing.  Here’s a question from a mom about starting her second baby on solid food and Ruth’s answer.  Maybe YOUR feeding solid question will be answered too!

Love Super Baby Food! My first child is a terrific eater and I know it is from using your book. However baby number two is presenting a bit of a challenge. She’s 6 months and becoming really gassy after rice cereal. I don’t get it. I am still nursing and am very careful about what I ingest. We haven’t been able to really start other solids like avocado and banana because it is such a battle. Could it be the rice cereal? We were about the start the super porridge, but now I’m not so sure. Thoughts?

Ruth says:

NO BATTLES! Wait a week and then gently offer again. Try banana well mushed and liquidy-tastes like breastmilk. Ages 6 and 7 months are for LEARNING TO EAT. Not until 8 months will you baby actually need calories from solid foods to supplement breastmilk. Wait a few days, try again, and let me know how things worked out. Never force or push! 🙂 (Rice cereal and gas – I’m not surprised. I’d be willing to bet that the cereal as first food will be changed to banana some day.) Make sure your baby is getting an iron supplement and a vitamin D supplement-ask your pediatrician.

If you have any feeding solid food questions, do not hesitate to leave  a comment here.  Ruth would love to hear from you and to help.

Jun 302011
 

Parents want to know: Does baby food need salt or sugar?

Ruth says:

When you are preparing homemade baby food, such as Super Baby Porridge, never add salt or sugar. Sugar causes cavities in the teeth and adds empty calories to your baby’s diet.  Not only does sugar contain no nutrients, it actually uses up your baby’s existing nutrients from other foods for its digestion.  Although salt is needed by your baby’s body, he gets plenty of it from natural unsalted food.  Salt is an acquired taste and you should not promote a love of salt in your baby’s taste buds.  Simply stated, bland is best for your baby’s diet!

Jun 282011
 

Moms Are Talking About: Feeding Juice to Baby

Specifically, do babies need juice?  If so, at what age and how much juice does he need?

Ruth says:

The American Academy of Pediatrics says to feed no more than 4-6 ounces of juice to a child and only after 6 months old, if at all. Too much sugar. Juice should NOT be given in bottles or in sippy cups that can be drunk all day long, bathing the teeth in sugar. Only water should be in sippy cups. Thanks for writing!

Jun 212011
 

Moms are talking about:

How to get the exclusively breastfed baby ready for solid foods:

Ruth Says:

Thanks for using my book. It’s great that you are breastfeeding!  One thing you can do right now to make your little sweetie more accepting to new flavors is to eat a variety of flavors yourself.  The flavors will be in your breastmilk, so eat foods like cabbage, broccoli, sweet potatoes, whole grains and beans, and all the super foods that are loaded with nutrition.

There are a few chapters of Super Baby Food that you should read in their entirety before you start feeding solid foods.  The chapters about food safety and setting up the feeding area, as it says on page v in the front of the book.  You may want to ask your pediatrician for a vitamin supplement for her – one with vitamin D and iron and perhaps zinc.  These are important nutrients that your baby will start needing at around 6 months.

Enjoy!

Ruth

To read more about starting solids, try the new Super Baby Food ebook available on Super Baby Food.com.

Jun 192011
 

Moms are talking about: Baby Food Snacks

It’s not unusual for a baby to eat only one major meal a day, with the rest of his food coming from snacking.  Snacks are necessary in a baby’s diet and should consist of smaller portions of the same healthy foods that are part of larger meals. A baby may not begin eating three baby-sized meals until he is 10 months old, although he may start as early as 4 months.

When Should Snacks Be Offered to Your Super Baby During the Day?

Snacks should be offered at scheduled, predictable times every day and not at random.  Snacks should be eaten in the feeding area, as main meals are, because they ARE meals.

Read more about Super Snacks at the Super Baby Food Blog.

The following are some example of Super Baby Food Snacks:

  • SOFT pieces of wedges of ripe peeled and cored fruit
  • SOFT pieces of cooked, diced vegetables
  • Oatios or another brand of health store equivalent of Cheerios
  • Small lumps of cottage cheese
  • well-cooked pasta pieces
  • cooked brown rice or other grains

For a complete list of Super Baby Snacks as well as recipes for Toddler Hors d’oeuvres, check out Super Baby Food!

Jun 152011
 

grains-baby-foodOne of our fabulous Super Baby Food parents asked about saving time by grounding up the grains for Super Baby Porridge and Freezing for use later.  we thought it was such a great question that we would share Ruth’s answer.

Regarding the freezing of Ground grains for use later, Ruth says:

I’m not really sure how long (ground grains) will keep in the deep freeze after grinding.  I know that I put in my book, Super Baby Food, that they will keep for two months at refrigerator temperatures, so in the deep freeze, figure about six months or more.

Please note that in the next edition of my book (due out soon), also entitled Super Baby Food,  that I will be recommending that you do NOT grind in advance.  I will be recommending that you grind them immediately before cooking.  The reason for this is the fresher the grain and the more recently that it has been broken open by grinding, the more nutrients it has and the less nutrient loss to air, light, and heat.  So if you have a blender/grinder, I would suggest you use it daily.  If you do not have a blender/grinder and borrow someone else’s to do batch grinding, then it might be more convenient if you store in the fridge up to 2 months or in the deep freezer in good-quality freezer containers for about 6 months.

Thanks for writing!
🙂
Ruth

Jun 082011
 

Moms Wonder…

babies drinking waterDo babies need water? If  so, when, where and why?

Ruth says:

Exclusively breastfed babies do not need any extra water.  Formula-fed babies may have a few ounces of extra water (up to 4 ounces) per day on hot days.   However, when babies start solid foods, they should be given a few sips of water from a cup with any solid foods meal to help the kidneys.  Never give juice in the cup or bottle, only water or milk.  Teach your baby to learn to like plain water so he will develop a life-long habit of drinking plain water instead of sweetened beverages.

Jun 052011
 
raw-dairy-products-for-baby

Moms Are Talking About…

Raw Dairy Products for Their Baby.  We asked Ruth, Are raw dairy products  safe to feed to baby?

Ruth says:

In a word – “Nope”

Here’s why:

Milk and cheese made from raw milk have not been pasteurized–heated sufficiently to kill dangerous bacteria. The American Academy of Pediatrics and the American Dietetic Association say to NOT feed any baby milk, cheese, or any dairy products that are raw (have not been pasteurized).  Babies’ immune systems are not mature enough to fight bacteria that might have contaminated them and some bacteria could be lethal.  Anyone who is “immunocompromised” should not eat raw dairy products, including babies and young children, the elderly, and those with an illness.  And I believe the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) recommend that NO ONE, even very healthy adults, should eat raw dairy products, especially those who are immunocompromised.

May 302011
 

Happy Memorial Day!

The Super Baby Food Blog would like to highlight two blog posts this week that we feel are particularly well done.

Ali at MomSpark.net put together a fantastic post to help beginners start to make their own baby food.  Super Baby Food lovers know that the first step can be a bit daunting but once in the groove, making your own baby food is as easy a one, two, three.  Momspark.net identifies one, two, three for you to help you get started in a quick and easy way.

Naomi Odes Aytur of  Babble wrote a terrific post with a recipe of homemade baby food made with cauliflower and millet.  She made it sound and look easy and her testimonial of her baby’s love for the dish is inspiring.  Thanks, Naomi, for posting this terrific recipe for homemade baby food.

May 262011
 

Moms Are Talking About…

Feeding Cottage Cheese to Your Baby

Cottage Cheese baby foodThe American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommends dairy products (yogurt, natural cheeses, cottage cheese) made from whole milk because babies need fats.  As for all new foods, use the four-day wait rule.  Keep in mind that these fats are the saturated kind, which should be minimized in older children’s diets.  So when your baby becomes a toddler at age 1-2 years, you may want to switch to low-fat or non-fat dairy products, depending on which your professional baby care provider recommends and the age to switch.  I recommend buying only ORGANIC dairy products, which are from cows that are not treated with antibiotics or BVG (bovine growth hormone) and graze on grass with no pesticides.

Although it’s OK to give your child dairy products like yogurt and cheese made from cow’s milk, do not feed cow’s milk itself to your baby until s/he is one year old.  Until one year, give your baby breastmilk or formula and no cow’s milk, because cow’s milk protein is different from the protein in breastmilk/formula.  Be sure all dairy and cheeses you give to your baby are pasteurized and not made from raw milk.  Start your baby on dairy only if there are no milk allergies in the family–consult your pediatrician as to whether to introduce dairy to your baby.  In fact, if there are ANY allergies in the family (food allergies, asthma, pollen, etc.) , especially in the immediate family, discuss them thoroughly with your baby care povider.

By the way, if you haven’t given yogurt or kefir to your baby yet, you may wish to choose these dairy products over cottage cheese because they have the healthy bacteria so necessary for your baby’s digestive and immune systems.

For more information on dairy products and your baby, check Super Baby Food or right back her at the Super Baby Food Blog.

May 252011
 

Baby Led WeaningMoms are talking about…

Baby Led-Weaning

There is a DVD available on this subject.  I paid $90! for it and then realized the entire DVD can be viewed on YouTube for free.  There is also a book on it by Gill Rapley and Tracey Murkett called Baby Led Weaning.  Google “baby led weaning” and lots of information will come up on it. I can’t really say anything official about Baby Led Weaning because the AAP (American Academy of Pediatrics) and the ADA (American Dietetic Association) have not yet taken a stance.

However, in my opinion, parents should lovingly offer the correct age-appropriate food with no pressure or goading to eat it.  And it should be up to the baby to decide which foods and how much to eat.  I would not be surprised if we starting switching over to Baby Led Weaning from the way we currently feed babies.  With Baby Led Weaning (BLW), the baby never gets fed from a spoon by the parent.  The baby either feeds him/herself with his hands or feeds himself with the spoon himself. By the baby feeding herself, she decides herself when she is full.  This may help prevent obesity because the baby depends on her satiety signals for when to stop instead of depending on the parent to decide for her.  I personally think BLW is a great idea. Also, advocates of BLW say it’s much easier for the parent since they don’t do the puree thing.  For more information on BLW check out this terrific article on wholesomebabyfood.com.

May 192011
 

What to do when your baby won’t eat a certain food?

It’s a worry for parents.  The first thing to remember is not to push it.  Put the food away and try again in a few weeks. Sometimes your baby will not eat something that is sweet and tastes good to you.  With my baby, it was applesauce.  I was surprised (but not upset!) that he simply would not eat it. A few months later, he began eating it with gusto and has loved it ever since.

If you’re afraid a toddler will not like a particularly healthy new food, such as kale, use a little reverse psychology to get her interested.  Don’t give her any and eat it in front of her.  She will want some.  Be hesitant, but agree to give her some. If you’re lucky, she will love to eat it because it makes her feel like a big girl who fits in with the rest of the adults in the family.

Remember, too, babies will almost always make a face when offered a new food, especially if it has a strong flavor.  Do not go by her facial expression.  Offer her another spoonful and if her little mouth opens to accept a refill, continue feeding!

For more baby food tips check out Super Baby Food or right back her at the Super Baby Food blog!

May 172011
 

Super Baby Food Loves This Post on How To Make Fruit Leather

Tricia, a blogger at How Sweeter It Is, is a fan of Super Baby Food.  We love that.  We also love that she took the time to describe the making of fruit leather as mentioned in Super Baby Food, with pictures, in a scrumptious blog post on her site for mom’s benefit.  Keep up the good work, Tricia.

May 122011
 

A mom had a question on the Super Baby Food Facebook Page about feeding a baby radishes!

Are radishes OK to feed a baby?

Here is what Ruth had to say:

Radishes technically are OK to give to a 9 month old, but I would suggest giving very little and very well diced – use a garlic press and knife to get it into the smallest pieces.  Radishes might cause stomach upset and may be difficult for your baby’s immature system to digest.  Try just a little tiny pea-sized bit and wait a day or so to see if your baby has any reaction.

Use only organic radishes and herbs and spices.

You can add herbs and spices anytime after 6 months, but I would first start with spices that are not hot.  Try a little cinnamon, or ginger first, then move on to turmeric (a SUPER spice loaded with good stuff), cumin, and others.  Stay away from the hot ones, such as cayenne pepper and garlic, for a while.  Introduce in very small quantities and, as always for new foods, use the 4-day wait rule.  Spices are loaded with antioxidants and are super foods, however, do NOT use imported spices, as they may have heavy metals (lead, mercury) in them.

I like the Frontier brand.  All their spices are organic and you can find them at the natural foods store or large grocery stores like Wegman’s.
http://www.frontiercoop.com/products/spices.php

TIP: If your mouth gets too hot from hot or peppery spices, cool it down with milk, which cools better than water or juice.

Thanks for writing!

Does anyone else have a question regarding a vegetable?  Send them to Ruth!

May 122011
 

Choosing, Picking, and Preparing Carrots to Feed your Baby

Carrots are loaded with beta-carotene, a form of vitamin A that is not toxic, even in large doses.  Your baby should get a vitamin A veggie every day!  Here are some details for feeding you baby carrots:

Age: Baby must be at least 7 months old for cooked carrots, 10 months for finely grated raw carrots.

Choosing: Carrots should be firm, and not pale.  The smaller the carrot, the sweeter the carrot.

Storing: Carrots need cold temperature and high humidity.  Store in the refrigerator in plastic bag with holes.  When properly stored, carrots retain their nutrients for up to two weeks.

Preparation for cooking: Nutrients are most concentrated in the peels of carrots and just below.  You don’t have to peel or scrape young or small carrots if you give them a good scrubbing with a vegetable brush.  Older, bigger carrots are probably better peeled.

Steaming: Steam whole carrots 15 minutes, carrot slices about 10 minutes.

Baking: Large carrots can be baked in the oven.  Scrub them and leave whole and unpeeled. Bake at 350 for 30 to 40 minutes.

Freezing: Freeze pureed carrots using the food cube method for up to 2 months.

For tips on preparing and feeding more vegetables, check out Super Baby Food book or check right back here at the Super Baby Food Blog.

May 082011
 

When to Give an Iron Supplement to Your Baby

A full-term baby is born with enough iron stores from Mom to last him about 4-6 months, or until his birth weight doubles.  Babies, then, after 4-6 months, need foods high in iron such as iron-fortified formula or iron-fortified cereal.  The question is: does a baby need an iron supplement?  Again, the first resource to turn to is your pediatrician.  Together, you and he can determine what your baby’s diet is providing and if there is a need for a daily, supplemental iron drop, as suggested by the American Academy of  Pediatrics in some cases.  Babies may continue to need an iron supplement until they are 18 months old, but be careful to give the baby too much iron, it can lead to constipation.   A detailed list of iron-rich foods is included in Super Baby Food’s nutrition reference section.  For online information regarding iron-rich foods, try this list at Wholesomebabyfood.com.

Does your Baby Need a Fluoride Supplement?

A fluoride supplement is another nutritional supplement that should be discussed with your pediatrician.  The prevailing guideline from the AAP is that fluoride NOT be given in infants under the age of 6 months. Specifically,

“The American Academy of Pediatrics and the American Academy of Dentistry recommend that all children older than six months of age, breast fed or formula fed, be given fluoride supplements if they live in an area where the fluoride level of the water is less than 0.3 ppm. Optimal fluoride concentration in water for teeth is .7-1.2 ppm. Use of fluoride supplements is indicated for children in non-fluoridated areas.”

The take-away here is that up to 6 months, fluoride supplements are not necessary.  After 6 months have a talk with your pediatrician regarding your baby’s diet (breast-feeding or bottle feeding) and the percentage of fluoride in your drinking water to decide if a fluoride supplement is necessary.  As with many child care practices, prevailing wisdom changes, so be sure to discuss with your pediatrician and check out the websites of the AAP and the AAD for the most updated  information.

Check back with the Super Baby Food Blog for more information regarding Iron and Fluoride Supplements.

May 042011
 

The number one rule when considering supplements for your baby is to discuss it with your pediatrician.  Between the two of you, you can determine the diet your baby has now and what might need to be supplemented.  With that in mind, here is some general information that you can use to start to talk about supplements for your baby.

Vitamin supplements are called supplements because they are meant to do just that – “supplement” a baby’s good diet.  Vitamin supplements are terrific because even a good diet can be lacking in nutrients due to improper storage of foods, too-early harvesting, and the lack of nutrients in our country’s depleted soils from poor farming methods.

Exclusively breast-fed babies are often prescribed a supplement containing vitamin D.  The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends this because breast milk may not have enough of this nutrient, which is produced by sunlight on skin.  Some, however, feel the need for Vitamin D as a supplement to a breastfeeding baby may not be necessary.  You can read that point of view here on Homemade Baby Food Recipes.com.

Once you discuss supplements with your pediatrician, be sure to give your baby his vitamin supplement with her meals, not on an empty stomach.  Vitamins work with food to help with chemical reactions in the body.  For many babies the method will be to exclusively breast feed your baby until 6 months old and add vitamin D, and possibly iron drops (we’ll talk more about iron in the next post).  Bottle fed babies will not need Vitamin D as a supplement as it is provided in formula.

In the next post we’ll discuss Iron and Fluoride as supplements.  For even more information on nutritional supplements including a terrific appendix of every vitamin known to man defined with the  nutritional needs of your baby by age check out the Super Baby Food book or check back here at the Super Baby Food Blog!

Apr 272011
 

In the last blog post, we listed some signs of readiness for solid foods that you and your pediatrician will look for to determine whether your baby is ready for solid foods.  Remember to discuss these signs with your pediatrician to make the determination whether you baby is ready for solid foods.

Here are more signs of readiness:

  • Baby is at least four months old.
  • Baby is drinking at least 32-40 ounces of formula per 24 hours and still wants more.
  • Baby is breast feeding at least 8-10 times per 24 hours, empties both breasts at each feeding, and still wants more.
  • The time between feedings becomes shorter and shorter over a period of several days.
  • Baby can bring an object in her hand directly to her mouth.
  • Baby shows interest in others eating around her.
  • Baby becomes fussy in the middle of the night, whereas before she slept through with no problem.

For these and other great tips for feeding baby check out the book, Super Baby Food. For immediate information, try the Super Baby Food app, free for a limited time.

Apr 252011
 

In a previous blog post we talked about some reasons why starting baby food is not such a good idea. In this blog post and the next, we’ll go in the other direction and list some signs of readiness for solid foods.  If you would like to introduce solid foods to your baby, discuss it with your pediatrician and do whatever you and your pediatrician agree is best for your baby.

Here are some signs of readiness of solid foods:

  • Baby is at least four months old.
  • Baby weighs twice as much as her birth weight
  • Baby weighs at least 13-15 pounds
  • Baby can sit with support, allowing her to lean forward when she wants another spoonful and backward to refuse.
  • Baby has control over her head and neck muscles and can turn her head to refuse food.
  • Baby has stopped exhibiting the extrusion reflex when you put a spoon in her mouth.  If after several tries, food comes right back out of her mouth when you spoon feed her, she is not yet ready for solid foods.

Stay tuned for Part 2 of this blog post for more sign of readiness for solid baby food.  For more information on feeding baby consult the Super Baby Food book or the Super Baby Food App (free for a limited time)!

Apr 212011
 

In Part 1, we reviewed some baby first foods.  Here are some other great first food choices.

Mashed ripe banana is an excellent first food for baby.  Bananas are nutritious and very easy for your baby to digest.  Many other cultures use bananas exclusively as their first baby food.  Try to buy only organically-grown bananas.

Mashed, ripe avocado is also an excellent first food for baby.  Avocados are extremely nutritious and contains the fatty acids that your baby needs for brain development.

Cooked, mashed sweet potato is another favorite first food for babies who are at least 4 months old.  It, too, is highly nutritious and filled with beta carotene (vitamin A).

Yogurt is a good first baby food for babies who are at least 6 months old.  Whole milk yogurt, the plain variety, instead of low-fat yogurt, is recommended because your baby needs fats. Remember that yogurt, in the under 1 year old, should not be fed in place of breastmilk or formula, but may be fed as an additional first food.

For an informative video that describes baby’s first foods, check out the video starring Ruth Yaron and Cindy Crawford.

Stay tuned for more information to feed your baby right here at the Super Baby Food Blog.

Apr 182011
 

If the most popular question about feeding baby is “When”, the second most popular question has got to be, “What?” In a recent post we discussed your baby’s first meal.   In this post and the next, we will cover, in a bit more detail some first food choices for your baby.

The first foods you should feed your baby are those that are easily digested and least likely to trigger an allergic reaction.  The most recommended first food is commercial iron-enriched baby cereal.  You and your pediatrician should decide which food should be given to your baby at her very first meal.

Commercial iron-fortified baby rice cereal is the first choice of the American Academy of Pediatrics.  Rice is easily digested, is rarely an allergen, and thins readily when added to liquid.  Most commercial cereals, are refined and processed.  Earth’s best brand, however, is not.  It is made from whole brown rice and is organic.  If you would like to you a commercial brand, I suggest you use Earth’s Best.

If your baby is at least 6 months old, I recommend homemade whole grain brown rice or millet cereal as baby’s first food (ie. Super Baby Porridge).  These cereals are easily digested, but your baby must be at least 6 months old before he has the necessary digestive enzymes to handle the complex carbohydrates in these cereals.

For an informative video that describes baby’s first foods, check out the video starring Ruth Yaron and Cindy Crawford.

Stay tuned for Part 2 of First Foods right here at the Super Baby Food Blog.

Apr 132011
 

If you make eating healthy foods fun, healthy eaters will be created.  Kids think it’s lots of fun when you make playful, decorative food.  Decorating only takes a few seconds, but it makes your child feel very special.  For the older than 1 child, try creating a recipe like Apple Smiley Face (recipe below) and then decorating with fruits and vegetables.  Once the recipe is completed and placed on your child’s plate in a pancake-shaped face, use decorative touches to add eyes (cooked egg slices or halved grapes), a nose (raisin or carob chip), mouth (orange section) and hair (curly carrot peel). This recipe is healthy all around and fun!  Any healthy food can go through the same decorative transformation.

Here’s the Apple Smiley face recipe:

To make a “pancake,” grate a well-scrubbed organic apple with peel in a processor (or use organic no-sugar-added applesauce). Mix with 1-2 tablespoons natural peanut butter or other nut butter to make a slightly thick “dough.” Optionally add 1 teaspoon maple syrup or agave nectar (a healthy sweetener that can be found in natural foods stores) and a pinch of cinnamon and/or some flax seed oil or freshly ground flax seeds. Grate an apple in a processor.

Enjoy your toddler’s enjoyment of this Super Snack!

Apr 062011
 

Every parent’s worst nightmare is a baby who they fear is not eating enough.  If you feel that something is wrong with your baby’s eating habits and/or his weight is dropping, your first stop, as always, is with your pediatrician.  You might also find a registered dietitian in your area.  This site will help you find one: EatRight.org.

Your baby should be physically growing and learning skills and milestones.  Is he meeting his developmental milestones? You may want to pick up a copy of this book from your local library: The Wonder years: Helping Your Baby and Young Child Successfully Negotiate The Major Developmental Milestones by the American Academy of Pediatrics.  I get a lot of emails from the parents of picky eaters and it is almost always the case that they begin eating lots of food after the age of 8 months when they start moving.  Is your baby crawling a lot?  The more babies move, the hungrier they get and the more they should eat for all the extra energy they need.

There are some great books on picky eaters, too.  Try Food Chaining, it talks about the difference between picky eaters and children who have serious eating disorders.  Whatever you decide to do, make sure you keep your pediatrician involved.

Mar 312011
 

Your beginner eater has had her very first meal.  It’s now day two of solid foods and she is ready for another meal.   For the first week, give her one meal each day consisting of one single food – the same food you fed to her in her very first meal.  Give her some breast milk or formula before the solid food so that she is not too hungry when you spoon-feed her.   After she finishes the food you can give her the rest of the breast or formula.  For the first few days, each meal should be no more that a tablespoon before mixing with liquid.

At the beginning of the second week of solid foods, introduce your baby to one new food from the list below.  Wait 4-7 days (The Four Day Wait Rule) and watch for allergy symptoms before introducing another food.

  • ripe avocado
  • ripe banana
  • sweet potato
  • yogurt, whole-milk (6 months or older)
  • commercial, iron-fortified single-grain cereals: rice, barley, millet, oatmeal
  • mild fruits, cooked and strained apricots, nectarines, peaches, pears, plums, prunes

For more details on feeding baby his first solid meals check out  Super Baby Food or check back to the blog for more informative blog posts!

Mar 302011
 

You’ve checked out all the signs for readiness and your feeding area is welcoming and safe.  It’s time for your baby’s very first “solid” food meal!  Here are some tips to make sure that your baby’s very first meal is a success.

The best time to give your baby her very first meal is in the morning or early afternoon.

  • Give the first meal when your baby is not too hungry.  A too-hungry baby urgently wanting to eat may become frustrated during this new unfamiliar eating method.
  • Feed first meal after he has had a partial breast or bottle feeding. Give him half a feeding, then introduce his first solid food, and then finish the feeding.
  • The temperature of your baby’s food should be moderately warm.
  • The first meal will be very little food, no more than a teaspoon or two.
  • The consistency of the first solid food will not be solid, it will be much more liquid than solid.
  • When ready and comfortable, place a pea-sized amount of the liquidy food on the spoon, place the spoon lightly on your baby’s lower lip and slip it gently into his mouth, so that it is on the top of his tongue.  Let him suck the food off the lower spoon.  If he doesn’t suck, then tip the spoon so that the food pours slowly into his mouth.
  • Whatever happens, smile and say, “Mmmm!!!”
  • Watch for signs that you should end the meal, when the food is gone or when she turns her head away and closes her little mouth when she sees the spoon coming.

Check out his cute You Tube video of a baby’s first meal.  Watch how the Mom incorporates many of tips described above.

Mar 282011
 


In the last Super Baby Food Blog post, we talked about the Serving Size of a Super Baby Food meal.  Size is important Also important is to balance your baby’s diet among the food groups.  To do just that, try this tip: keep food servings about the same size.  For example, if your baby’s vegetable servings are currently 2 food cubes, keep the fruit servings about the same size:  2 Food Cubes = 4 Tablespoons = 1/4 cup.  Make cooked cereal servings twice the size of fruit or veggie servings, because cooked cereal is mostly water.

For 2 veggie food cubes or 1/4 cup fruit, a similar sized cereal serving would be 1/2 cup of cooked cereal. (A half-cup of cooked cereal is only a few tablespoons of ground dry cereal before it is mixed with water).  Keeping food servings similar in size will help to promote in your baby’s diet a nice balance of nutrients from the different food groups. This is what we mean by “similar-sized” food servings.

Mar 252011
 

In the Super Baby Food,  I write about the “food serving.”  Here’s more information about the “food serving” as it relates to your baby.

The amount of food in a serving varies tremendously with the day and the baby.  The formal, technical definition of a baby food serving is “however much your baby will eat.”  The point is that there is no absolute size or standardized amount of food that constitutes a serving for a baby.  But to give you rough idea, the hypothetical average beginning eater’s food serving probably falls somewhere between 1 and 4 tablespoons.

A major part of the Super Baby Food System is the preparation of ice-cube sized frozen vegetable cubes.  For beginners, a serving size is generally 1/2 veggie cube to 2 veggie cubes. Start by giving your beginning eater a food cube made by filling the ice cube about half-way.  If she wants another, she”ll let you know.

Another major part of the Super Baby Food System is the home-making of whole grain cereals, like Super Baby Porridge.  A food serving of homemade cereal for beginning eaters is 1/4 – 1/2 cup of cooked cereal.  This equates to 1-2 tablespoons of dry uncooked cereal before it’s stirred into boiling water.  Remember that “baby serving’ is VERY flexible.  All babies are different and all appetites are different – it’s simply a rough idea.  Give your baby as much as he will eat, but watch carefully for signals that he has had enough, and don’t try to feed him more food after he loses interest.

Watch for our next blog post on similar-sized food servings to help with the balance of your baby’s Super Baby Food Diet.

Mar 232011
 

In a previous post, we outlined the Super Baby Food Food Cube Freezing method.  Freezing food is an important step. Thawing the food is the next important step.  It’s important to thaw the food “safely.”  “Safely” here has two meanings.  First, baby food should be thawed in a way which prevents bacterial growth.  Baby food should never be thawed at room temperature, and baby food should not be kept at room temperature for more than several minutes.  Second, “safely” means thawing baby food so that it is not too hot or too cold to be a danger to your baby.  If it’s too hot, it may burn your baby’s mouth.  If it is too cold, and therefore not thawed thoroughly, it may contain frozen food chunks that are choking hazards to your baby.  Food that is too cold may also “burn” your baby’s sensitive mouth.  In thawing food, you simply want to take the chill out of baby’s food, you don’t want to make it hot.

Here are a few ways to safely thaw those frozen baby food cubes:

Thaw Food Cubes on the Stove Top:

Place frozen food cube in a pot and thaw over very low heat stirring often.  A double broiler can also be used.  This method takes a while so begin to warm the cubes 15 minutes to 1/2 hour before mealtime.

Thaw Food Cubes in the refrigerator:

Thaw overnight in the refrigerator.  Be sure to stir insuring that no frozen chunks are left.  If you need to warm the food a bit, place container in a larger container with hot tap water.

Thaw Food Cubes In the Microwave:

Many experts recommend avoiding the microwave altogether because of the uneven heating that microwaves are notorious for.  It’s a fact that parents use the microwave regardless so, if you are going to use the microwave to thaw, be careful.  Place the frozen cubes in a little microwave-safe bowl.  With experience you will know exactly how long to thaw a frozen cube, probably between 30 seconds and a minute.  Once thawed almost all the way through, mash the remaining cube to even out the temperature.

Here are a few tips to make sure that baby’s food will be safe for baby to eat:

  • Stir, stir, stir baby food thoroughly to distribute heat
  • Always test the temperature of your baby’s food BEFORE feeding to your baby
  • Never re-freeze thawed baby food!

For additional information, check out Super Baby Food and check back with us here at the Super Baby Food blog.  Remember to subscribe to our feed to keep up with informative blog posts!

Mar 212011
 

With regard to a baby’s or toddler’s diet, the word “snacks” is a misnomer.  We adults tend to think of snacks as sweet little bits of foods that we eat for enjoyment more than to assuage hunger or to provide nutrition.  This is not true for your baby or toddler.  Super Baby Food “Super Snacks” are not extras, but a necessary part of your baby or toddler’s  daily diet that adds calories and nutrition! Of course, baby’s and toddler’s are different.  Below is a simple, nutritious Super Snack recipe for a Toddler.  The Super Baby Food Blog will be sharing many more Toddler and Baby Super Snack information and recipes, so come back and visit often!

Toddler Hors d’oeuvre Recipe:

Fresh Fruit Hors d’oeuvres

1 ripe mashed banana, or some avocado or other mashed fruit

1/2 C chopped nuts, (if not allergic, of course)

2 teaspoons honey

Do not cook but form into balls and refrigerate or freeze!

There are plenty more recipes in Super Baby Food, or check back with us us here at the blog! Happy Super Snacking!

Mar 152011
 

Pureed, cooked vegetables are a large part of the Super Baby Food Diet.  To save time and energy, cook and puree large batches of veggies all at once and freeze them in ice cube trays using the Food Cube Method.

The Food Cube Method involves two steps:

1) Placing the food in ice cube trays and letting it freeze until solid, and

2) Transferring the frozen food cubes into plastic freezer bags.

Remember, the pureed food in the ice cube trays should be frozen as quickly as possible.

After the the food cubes are frozen solid (8-12 hours), transfer them to freezer bags (you must use Freezer bags, not storage bags) removing as much of the air in the bag as possible. Label and date each bag with a freeze date and a expire date.  It’s safe to say that frozen vegetables will keep up to two months.  A timesaver tip is to mix together several days worth of orange and green vegetable cubes and avocado cubes in the same freezer bag.  This trick makes it easier to find, pull out, and open ONE bag instead of three!

For more details on the Food Cube Freezing Method check out  Super Baby Food or check back to the blog for more informative blog posts!

Mar 102011
 

Feeding solid foods is such an important milestone in you and your baby’s life.  It is always important to remember safety first.  Below are some safety tips for feeding baby solids.

  • Make sure that wall mountings, electrical outlets, and objects on counter tops are out of baby’s reach from the feeding chair.
  • Your baby should not be able to grab something and use it for leverage to tip chair over.
  • Never leave your baby alone in a high chair.
  • Never allow older children to play in baby’s high chair or hang onto it.
  • Always use the full restraint system including the waist and middle straps when seating baby in the high chair- never use just the tray alone.
  • Remember to clean the chair and the restraint system on a regular basis.
  • Your baby should be seated in an upright position in the high chair or infant seat in order to prevent choking during eating
  • Remember to stop using the seat when your child has reached the recommended maximum height or weight.

For more safety tips while feeding solids check out the Super Baby Food App (available for free for a limited time), check out Super Baby Food or check back to the blog!

Mar 072011
 

You’ve decided that the time is right to start feeding solid foods to your baby. Congratulations!  The next step is to create an environment to encourage your little guy in his new adventure.  Here are some tips for creating a friendly solid food feeding zone:

  • Your baby’s feeding area should be a happy place to be. Use baby’s mealtime as quality time for bonding with your beautiful baby.
  • Make silly faces at your baby, smile, and talk to her during mealtime.
  • Allow your baby to participate as much as possible in the feeding process.
  • Praise the good ignore the bad.  Try making a game of eating to prevent food on the floor.

During your baby’s first meal, he should develop a sense of trust and relaxed mealtimes are part of the process.  Your baby will actually grow and develop better if he is feed in a loving environment. For more information on creating a safe and friendly “solid food” feeding zone, check out the Super Baby Food app or subscribe to the blog for additional blog posts on the subject!

Mar 022011
 

After the birth of the baby, the next biggie milestone will be starting solids. The biggest question parents ask is: When Should I Start Feeding My Baby Solid Foods? The answer is not the same for every baby and starts with a call to the pediatrician!  Most pediatricians say start solids between 4 and 6 months, and closer to 6 months if you are breastfeeding.   Here are six reasons to wait before starting solid foods:

  1. Your baby’s immature digestive system is not ready to break down starches and carbohydrates like those found in cereals. His body cannot yet digest some fats. High protein foods like eggs, meat, and even cow’s milk, if given too early, may cause problems with your baby’s immature kidneys.
  2. Babies have a Tongue/Thrust Reflex which pushes food forward and out of the mouth making it difficult to spoon feed.
  3. Your baby is not yet able to indicate he is full. Until he can turn his head away from the spoon, you may unintentionally over feed him.
  4. Feeding solids too early can potentially lead to future medical problems (i.e. obesity, asthma, food allergies).
  5. Solids won’t help your baby sleep through the night.
  6. If you are breastfeeding, giving solids may cause a decrease in your milk production.If you are breastfeeding, giving solids may cause a decrease in your milk production.

For more information on starting solids, check back for future posts right here on the subject.  You can also check out the new Super Baby Food app that has an entire section dedicated to feeding baby solid foods and, of course, there is always more information to be found in Super Baby Food!

Feb 252011
 

Here is the “Four-day Wait Rule” described in Super Baby Food:

Introduce only one new food at a time.  After you introduce your baby to a new food, do not introduce another new food for at least four days.  During the 4-day waiting period, watch carefully for signs of allergies.

Note: Some experts recommend a 3-day waiting period, some recommend waiting 5 days, and still others recommend a full week of waiting between new foods. Consult with your pediatrician and follow his recommendation.

Feb 242011
 

Moms are talking about Brewer’s Yeast.  They want to know what it is, why is important, if they can feed it their babies and if so how?  Brewer’s yeast is a nutritional supplement powder that is high in protein, the B Vitamins, trace elements and other nutrients.  Taking a few seconds to add brewer’s yeast into your baby’s morning Super Porridge gives it a super nutrition boost.  You can try Brewers Yeast when your baby is 6 months old.  Be sure to use the Four Day Wait Rule.  At this age use just 1/2 teaspoon mixed into Super Porridge and then between 8-12 months begin using 1 teaspoon.

Feb 212011
 

Inquiring minds, want to know…Do the grains used to make Super Porridge need to be washed?

If you buy organic grains, then there’s no real need to wash them.    Any bacteria on the grains will be killed in the boiling water. (Conventionally grown grains that are not organic have the problem of pesticides–I strongly suggest you use only certified organic grains.)  If you still choose to wash the grains before grinding, do so by putting them in a strainer and rinsing under running tap water.  Keep in mind, though, that you are washing away some valuable nutrients, especially the water-soluble B vitamins.  After rinsing, blot off most of the water with clean towels, then place on dry towels to air dry.  Or spread them on a baking sheet and bake at 200-300 degrees F until dry.  Then grind away.  The grains must be totally dry or they will just clump up in the blender.  (For parents with a food dehydrator, such as the Excalibur, you can dry the washed grains in your dryer.)

Feb 172011
 

Moms who have already started feeding their baby commercial baby cereal wonder if they can convert their baby to eat Super Baby Porridge after discovering it’s benefits in Super Baby Food.  In a word…the answer is, “yes.”

Of course, it is best to start your baby out on Super Porridge from the very beginning.  But  for those babies who have already had the commercial and prefer it over homemade Super Porridge, try this:  Mix just a bit of  Super Porridge into foods that your baby loves, such as pureed veggies/fruits or mix a small amount into the commercial baby cereal.  Gradually increase the amount of Super Porridge until most or all of the food is Super Porridge.

Has anyone had success with a Super Baby Porridge switch?  Please share your success story with us.

Feb 142011
 

To grind whole grains into a powder for Super Porridge, you will find that most food processors just don’t “cut it” (pun intended).  A blender works much better, but still does leave large pieces in the grind.  There’s no need to worry about your baby eating these lumps, as they’ll just pass through her system.  The Tribest blender is a real work horse for grinding whole grains, flax seeds, and nuts.  I like the Tribest because you can wash its part in the dishwasher.  It’s important to clean out any grinder after you have ground grains, nuts, or seeds because their oils (wheat germ oil, almond oil, pumpkin seed oil, flax seed oil) start to become rancid when they are exposed to the air.

Many moms and dads find that a coffee grinder works well for grains. You can also use if for grinding pumpkin seeds and nuts, as long as the owner’s manual says that this will not ruin the grinder.  Of course, you can also use it to grind coffee!!  Again, be sure to wash out all the leftover oils.

Here’s another idea for making Super Porridge smoother:

For the rare parents who are into grinding their own fresh flour using a grain grinder, such as the Wondermill or Nutrimill, you’ve got it made in terms of a super smooth Super Porridge.  Grind your grains into flour and then cook the fllour by adding 1 part flour to 4-5 parts boiling water.  Turn heat to low and cook for 5-10 minutes.)

Check back for more Super Baby Porridge tips….

Feb 082011
 

Starting solids is an important time for Mom and baby.  For many moms, the first question is always, “Where do I start?  If you are a fan of Super Baby Food, you have already heard of the Super Baby Diet – a detailed description of what to feed baby and when which is outlined in Super Baby Food.  For beginner’s though, starting is easy, and the shopping list even easier.  Here are the first foods you should buy and the order that you will need them as your baby grows:

  • Brown rice
  • Millet
  • Oatmeal / rolled oats
  • pearled barley
  • yogurt
  • tofu
  • eggs
  • juices
  • tahini
  • Oatios
  • brewers yeast
  • wheat germ
  • lentils
  • split peas
  • beans
  • bulgur
  • non-germinated cornmeal
  • whole wheat pasta

And here’s the best part, if you are just starting, simply buy the first two (brown rice and millet), and buy the rest as you need it!  You will be a pro in no time at all.  Check out the free, downloadable Super Baby Food Diet Daily Worksheet to help, too!

Feb 072011
 

You have spoken and we have listened.  We proudly present the Super Baby Food Diet Daily Worksheet, free for you to download at your leisure. This is the same worksheet featured in Ruth Yaron’s Super Baby Food.

We know this tool will help your meet your Super Baby feeding needs! Click here to download The Super Baby Food Diet Daily Worksheet.

Feb 032011
 

A mom recently sent me an email about Super Porridge concerned that her preparation of it was sometimes  “too lumpy” for her little guy.  Her baby is 7 months old and at this point she is feeding him oatmeal and millet.  Here are some pointers to avoid lumpy porridge.  For more detailed info check the Super Porridge Cereal chapter in Super Baby Food.

  1. Make sure that you are grinding the oats and the millet thoroughly enough to a form a powder, grinding in a blender for at least two full minutes.
  2. Make sure that your water to grain ratio is correct.  For Oatmeal that is one cup of oatmeal to two cups of water for 15 minutes.  For millet, that is 3 cups of water to one cup of millet for 45 minutes (or 3  tablespoons millet to one cup of water for a smaller portion.) (See chart in Super Baby Food on page 222)
  3. Once the water is boiling, reduce heat to lowest setting and THEN sprinkle the ground rice, stirring briskly with a wire whisk.
  4. Stir frequently at first, then again after the super porridge has had a few minutes to cool.