Thursday, July 26, 2012

Common Misconceptions & Baby Info

After taking a course in Holistic Nutrition this past year, and ultimately becoming a Holistic Nutritionist, I learned so many invaluable pieces of information that I wish every single parent in the world had access to. We, as parents, have many struggles and second guess so many of the decisions we make for our children. We want what is best for our kids, but we don't always know what that might be.

In an effort to help, even one person in one situation...here goes.

So many babies suffer with Colic (Colic is a condition in which an otherwise healthy baby cries or displays symptoms of distress frequently and for extended periods, without any discernible reason.-Wikipedia). Often this is regarded as a phase a baby will get through, and typically in time that is the case, but what if there was a simple solution to this problem? The #1 food intolerance in babies is dairy and this intolerance can come from not the breast milk itself but the dairy that the mother is consuming. Please note that no baby is ever allergic to their mother's breast milk, but may have an intolerance to something she is consuming. The #2 culprit is wheat. So, before you try anything drastic or assume the worst, have Mom do an elimination diet of dairy and or wheat and dairy and journal each day any improvement in baby's behaviour. Imagine if Colic could be resolved by simply adjusting Mom's eating? Lets just say there would be a lot less sleepless nights and a lot happier babies.

When is a baby ready to eat solids? Every baby develops at a different rate, but a good indication that their digestive system is ready to handle more than just Mommy's breast milk is by their teeth. If they're 6 months and still have no sign of teeth, their digestive system isn't ready to try new foods.

Breast feeding vs formula feeding- Although in an ideal world, babies would be breast feed for their first year of life, this isn't always realistic and/or possible. The advantages of breast milk are that it is custom designed for each child, contains exactly what they need, it increases or decreases in volume as per the child's requirements, forges a bond between Mom and baby and decreases the babies risk of a number of future ailments (ex asthma). The disadvantages of formula are many. One significant fact is that all infant formula, unless labelled as otherwise, is irradiated (exposed to radiation). This is done to kill of any bacteria that is present, which I understand of course, but how much better is the radiation than the bacteria?? Additionally, there are many ingredients that babies should not be exposed to, nor do they need them for any reason in their diet, such as high fructose syrup, hydrogenated oil and various heavy metals. So, if you are unable to breast feed, for whatever reason, just make sure that you do your research. Don't just select the cheapest brand on the shelf or the container with the fanciest labelling. The formula you feed your child will contribute to their health status for the rest of their lives. So be very thoughtful about the decision you make.

To be cont'd...

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