Articles on infant feeding

Weaning-Breast Feed to Proper Feed

Dr. Yogesh Kumar, Ayurveda
The process of replacing mother's breast milk with Baby diet Is called Weaning.It has to be done gradually.It is one of the most crucial period in the child's growth because if not properly done the child could get malnourished from the faulty practices.It has two stages,First the mother's breast milk is replace with other milk and the second where the other milk is replaced by thick feed or easy to digest food.The breast feeding should be prompted up-to six months after that weaning is induced.Cow milk, goat milk or infant milk formula available in the market should be started.The milk should be pasteurized.Dilute the milk, for the first month equal quantity of water should be added to dilute the milk.As the months pass,the amount of water should be decreased.Cow milk could be given with dilution.Milk powder should not be added.After eight months other milk should be replaced with thick easy to digest food.Food should be given in small quantity and increased gradually.Fruits and vegetables should be soft and diluted.Child's eating capacity is limited so the feed must be given six to eight times a day in small amount.Everyday seasonal fruits should be given.If the child is sick ,small multiple feed should be given,the feed should be nutritious.The food should be clean and fresh,special care should be taken while preparing the meal for the weaning child.After one year the child should consume dal,rice, mashed vegetables and other light food items.Too much Candies and Chocolates should not be given to the child.Child should be encouraged to eat with his own spoon or use his own small utensils.Khichdi made from rice ,pulses and vegetables should be given .Oil should be used in minimum quantity.Breads,puddings and cakes could be given.

Know the Right Food for Your Infant & Child

Dr. Neeraj Gupta, Homeopath
The right approach to feeding your child is very important in the first year of life.For the 1st 4 months: Let your child feed exclusively on breast milk. There is no need to give water or juices in this period to your child as breast milk contains enough water. All the nutritional requirement of the child is supplied by breast milk. An only vitamin supplement is required which should be given as per doctor’s instructions.4 months onwards: It is important to start with nutritional supplements only after the 4th month. The breast milk is sufficient to suffice for baby’s nutritional requirements. The gradual introduction of food items along with breast milk should be started. Only one item should be given at a time in small quantities. It should be bland & nutritious. The next item should be introduced after 7-15 days of the first if the child has tolerated &accepted the first item well. Once the child is accepting feeds, boiled &cooled water can be started. Give the water in a small glass. There is no need to use a bottle at all, it only increases the chances of infection if not sterilised properly. You can feed your child freshly mashed banana,start with a quarter of a banana, initially give only 1-2 spoons gradually and you can increase the quantity once the child accepts and tolerates it. Start once a day and then gradually increase to twice a day. Stewed apple (Recipe)Take water in a vessel. Place another vessel with an apple in it and cover with lid. Place on fire & bring water to boil, the apple will get soft & be partially cooked in the steam. Remove apple from the vessel,remove peel when it is soft. Mash & feed, when cool. Other seasonal fruits like chikoo, papaya, mango can also be mashed & given. Instead of readymade tinned cereals, homemade freshly made cereals should be given. Boil rice in water till well cooked and soft, add sugar, mix well, mash the rice so as to bring it to the consistency of porridge. Feed with a spoon,initially once a day, then twice. The rice can also be cooked in milk. Start with 1-2 teaspoons & then gradually increase the amount, on the 3-4th day.This can be fed morning & evening. Boiled Moong Dal (lentils) with a little butter and salt, cooked well & mashed to a semisolid consistency can be fed once to the child, if the child is tolerating rice well. Mashed cooked vegetables, mashed potatoes with a little butter. Meshed vegetables like carrots, white pumpkin, dark green leafy vegetables can be given. Thin "sheera"made from rava,sugar and ghee can be given. Curds,which are fresh and not sour can be given initially a1-2 spoons & later increased. Fresh fruit juices-orange, sweet lime can be given. More solid foods can be added and taken at 5-6 months like Khichri, rice dal-mixed with a little ghee or butter. Nonveg food are better if started after 6 months.Soft boiled egg, start with yellow and then gradually add egg white. Soup - Chicken, meat can be started now. When you add new items do not stop the old ones. Gradually let the child eat other food like chappatis soaked in dal or milk, khichri etc. In families with a history of allergy (asthma, eczema), avoid artificial milk, eggs, cocoa, juices & wheat preparations till completion of 6 months. In such circumstances, you can only breastfeed until 6 months. Vegetarians need not give nonveg diet.By 8-9 months: The child should have most foods. You can start milk cow's or buffalo's milk without dilution in a glass. If the milk has too much fat you can remove it.At one year: The child should get used to adult food made at home. Do not force the child to eat. If your child does not eat much at a time, give small frequent meals. Give a good amount of protein in the form of pulses, grain, sprouts, peanuts, eggs, fish, meat esp. liver Give fresh fruits& vegetables - green, orange, red & yellow. Encourage the child to eat on his own with a spoon or his own hand. Avoid too spicy food. Avoid chocolates, sweets, tea, coffee, cold drinks & refined flour preparation.You can give cows or buffalo's milk 2-3 times from a glass. Breastfeeding can be continued up to 2 yrs.

3 Lesser Known Facts About Breastfeeding

Dr. Jyotsna Gupta, Gynecologist/Obstetrician
Breastfeeding is advocated to be the only best thing for a newborn. But while it is the most natural thing to do, it isn't an easy process. It is challenging and full of surprises. Researches throw up facts that surprise all. For example: breastfeeding is like a shield against breast cancer. Here are 3 such lesser known facts:The milk contents - ever wondered what your baby thinks of the taste of your breast milk. Well, the fact is that your breast milk is tailor-made for your baby. From the taste to its benefits, it is a full course meal. When the feeding begins, the milk is watery. This is to quench the baby's thirst. Then the consistency thickens and the milk becomes higher in fat content. This meets your baby's electrolyte needs as well as energy requirement. Want to know something more amazing? Through the day, your breasts milk's properties keep changing. By evening, it has higher sedating properties and helps the baby's body meet nutritional demands. This should explain that satisfied smile babies have when they sleep right after their feeds.Variation in milk production - it is okay and natural if you feel you are lopsided. Many breastfeeding mothers feel that one breast is heavier than the other since it produces more milk. This is possible and happens a lot. Our body is not perfectly symmetrical between left and right. This applies to breasts as well and shouldn't be worried about. Because of this, milk production can also vary between both the breasts.It causes weight loss - some women are known to lose their pregnancy weight by breastfeeding. Yes, this is also a lesser known fact. Breast milk happens to be a high calorie food which the baby literally sucks off the mother's body. This leads to shrinking of the mother's body.

10 Healthy Reasons to Promote Breastfeeding

Dr. Yogesh Kumar, Ayurveda
We all know that mother's milk is the beat nutrition for a baby and it also gives mental and emotional satisfaction.In the first year of life the baby grows fast.Doctors advice to breastfeed the baby at least up-to six months.After six month period the baby's weight increases by double, as compared to birth weight.To provide this fast growth baby needs essential calories ,proteins and other nutrients which is supplied by mother's milk and that is why we need to promote breastfeeding in babies.In today's world breastfeeding the babies have gone out of the fashion.The "modern moms" are finding it uncool to breastfeed their child.The soul purpose of this article is to promote more  mothers to breastfeed their children and clear the doubts in their mind related to breast feeding.The following are some benefits of breastfeeding.Benefits of BreastfeedingIt created a sense of  mental and emotional bond between mother and her baby. The baby feels more secure close to the mother.It is natural and  ready to consume, no need to prepare like artificial milk nutrition products.This best Natural Nutrition is free and no money can buy this precious gift.It protects the Baby from various communicable diseases as it has natural defense mechanism(antibodies).The mother's milk is sterilized hence it do not cause any digestive problem in the babies.Babies know the difference between the mother's nipple and artificial nipples.The babies who grows on mother's breast feed milk  have less tendencies to develop thumb sucking habits.The temperature of the breast milk is perfect for the baby.It is believed that babies fed on breast milk have better bones and muscle development as compared to non breast fed babies.Breastfeeding has been linked to developing protection against Childhood Cancers.Note: Mothers should always clean the nipples before and after the breast feed.

Diet of a Child Suffering With Loose Motions

Dr. Saurabh Kumar, Pediatrician
Loose motion is the second most common illness I see in my practice after throat infections. Besides the treatment of loose motions the biggest dilemma parents face is what food should be given to the child during the illness. For children less than 6 months of ageDo’s - Mother’s milk is best for the baby so continue breast feeding. Babies who are on formula feed, their parent can change formula milk from regular [NAN or Lactogen or Dexolac] to Soya milk powder (Nusobee or Isomyl soya) as its easily digestible. Electrol powder [ORS] to be added in the diet.Dont ‘s – No outside food and glucose water.For children 6 months to 1 yr of ageDo’s - Breast feeding to be continued for the baby. In weaning - food like dal, cerelac, soya milk powder, fruits [Banana or apple preferably], ragi, rava [Sooji] are completely safe. Electrol powder [ORS], coconut water and juices can be given in the diet. Dont's - No dairy milk, no glucose water, no fruits like mango and papaya.For children age more than 1 yr of ageDo’s – Keep the diet simple and bland. Dal rice, khicdi, pongal, sambhar rice, sandwiches, cerelac, roti subzi, curd rice, fruits [like banana, apple, chikoo], dosa, in the non veg food egg can be given but it should be fully cooked [boiled egg or omelette]. Electrol powder [ORS], coconut water and juices to added in the diet.Dont’s – No dairy milk. Spicy [pickle, spicy gravy, non veg food], sweet [gulab jamun, kheer, halwa] and oily food [poori, vada, deep fried stuff] to be avoided as they are difficult to digest and many times increases loose motion. No glucose water.Hope this blog helps in decreasing your dilemma in what diet to give to your child when he is suffering from loose motions.

Fussy Eating in Infants and Children

Dr. Murali Gopal, Pulmonologist
Early childhood nutrition is important in reducing childhood mortality and certain diseases, which are well documented in multiple studies worldwide. Poor nutrition can cause stunting of growth which is irreversible and can have long-term effects on cognitive development, school achievement, and economic productivity in adulthood and maternal reproductive outcomes. Fussy eating is one of the most common issues faced by most parents during growing stages of their child. Fussy eating is most common in toddler age group and can go beyond this age group, if not tackled at an early stage. Establishing healthy eating patterns is important to avoid problems such as obesity and eating disorders later in life.Researchers at Bristol University in England have discovered that delaying your baby’s introduction to lumpier foods may contribute to fussy eating habits. The study focused on a group of babies who were not given lumpy foods until they were 10 months or older. They found 1 in 5 of these babies were fussy eaters by 15 months. Research also indicates that while 27 per cent of toddlers are fussy eaters, 22 per cent of them have parents who admit to being fussy eaters, too. Food refusal is common especially when new food is introduced. Do not be put off; keep introducing the new food few times as it takes almost 10 attempts before baby will choose to eat it (Australian research). Parents always fear and feel guilty if baby has not had good feed,sometime end up force feeding without knowing the psychological effect of force feeding. Force feeding can results in aversion to food and might make eating habits even worse. Kids can reduce or even stop taking the food they liked before. If food refusal begins to affect a child’s growth, the family should be referred to appropriate healthcare professionals such as a child psychologist, dietitian, speech and language therapist or paediatrician. It is important to change to relevant food textures at appropriate age. We all have protective mechanisms which stop us from choking; this is called ‘Gag Reflex’. Some babies and children have sensitive gag reflex. These children will be fine to take smooth, pureed food. But when pureed food has lumps in it, they tend to gag, face can go red and some even vomit. This can be tackled by giving evenly grainy food rather than lumpy food. For example, adding cooked broken rice to rice puree or kanji to make it uniformly grainy. Once the child starts to tolerate it, slowly increase the grainy consistency in the food. Some children are better if they can feed themselves than parents try to feed them, as the child will decide when to stop. Introduce “Messy Play” with food for toddlers so they play with food and get to know textures. It may look messy, but this way small kid will learn to have touch food and taste it. Avoid frequent meal times and kids eating through the day, as you will be surprised on how these little snacks can make the child not have hunger to eat normal meal. By ensuring adequate gap between meals, kids will get the “hunger cycle” and would eat larger portions compared to having frequent small meals.Some children may have iron deficiency which may affect their appetite. Hence, it is important to give iron rich food from the time weaning is started. Pulses, red meat, green leafy vegetables, different types of spinach, dry fruits, finely chopped/powdered nuts (beware of risk of choking) can be introduced. Lots of evidence is emerging from large research studies where micro-nutrient deficiencies can lead to multiple health issues in children and programme their body to develop adulthood diseases.In this age of busy lifestyle and office going parents, early morning chorus of getting kids ready to school is time consuming. There is a culture of breakfast being offering at school. This has led to kids skipping their breakfast. School going children must definitely have their complete, balanced breakfast as they are breaking a long overnight fasting. This holds good even for adults. Avoid skipping breakfast interferes with cognition and learning ability of children.It is important to introduce right food at the right age and avoid food restrictions in growing children. Seek medical advice at the earliest to tackle fussy eating as it may be more than fussy eating. Fussy eating can lead to nutritional deficiency and long term eating and behavioral issues.

Ultimate Weight Loss Regime to Get Rid of Pregnancy Fat

Dr. Parul Chopra Buttan, Gynecologist/Obstetrician
Pregnancy fat is the EASIEST to get rid off! Yes, you read that correctly!! The EASIEST!! Let me share how:1. Acceptance and gratitudeMost importantly, look at your body in all its post pregnancy glory. I'd suggest alone in a room, in front of a long mirror, really look at your body. The stretch marks, the bulges of fat on the abdomen, thighs, the swollen breasts, the face with a long pending facial appointment, the unkempt tied up hair, the absence of any jewellery (your bangles and neck chains and rings off). Look at yourself and feel the pride. Express gratitude to your body for housing and bringing into this world safely a new soul. God's best creation. How can you not love the home of your baby and how can you feel anything but gratitude to it!! It will change soon and the signs of the miracle will diminish. Fortunately, some will be imprinted forever. 2. Breastfeed your babyThe body stores fat in pregnancy for a very specific purpose. It's not supposed to stay forever. It is supposed to be used up nourishing your baby in its first few months or years(depending on how long you wish to or can manage to feed!) Breastfeeding has innumerable benefits to both the mother and the baby, not the least of it being fat loss. Here's how the family can pitch in and enable this heavenly bond of love and care. (read my blog post on Feed-mother-feed: DietOur Indian culture places a lot of emphasis on nutrition for a feeding mother and rightly so. Not only does your health and well being depend on it, but you are programming your baby's health for life.Some tipsEat fresh home cooked meals.Continue your pregnancy habit of small frequent meals. You won't need to give in to binges if you're not famished!Eat a fruit first thing when you wake up. Any seasonal fruit will do- banana, apple, orange, mango.Plan your meals and stick to the times. So if you know you get hungry and munch on junk pre-dinner, plan to have a wholesome salad or a glass of milk with your protein supplement at 5pm. At least 3-4 litres of water in a day. Keeping yourself well hydrated keeps your energy level up, avoids mindless munching, enables good milk flow and maintains your sanity!4. Exercise Keeping active through the day is a natural gift of being a new mother! The diaper changes, burping, rocking, massaging, bathing, feeding the baby- all take care of that! But focused exercise, an hour a day, 3 days a week is a must. It de-stresses you besides bringing your lax muscles and joints back to their good strength. Vary your exercise routine, cardio (running,jogging) to strength training (weights) to yoga for a wholesome workout. It’s always better to workout under professional guidance, especially if you aren’t accustomed to exercise before, to minimise the risk of injury.5. Sleep and rest The importance of adequate sleep and rest cannot be underscored in losing weight. A tired burnt-out body does not have an efficient metabolism and doesn't burn fat despite exercise and eating right. They say "it takes a village to raise a child". Get all the help you can get. Involve your partner, parents, parents-in-laws,family, friends, neighbours in caring for your baby. The experience of being with a baby is so uplifting, you will easily find ready takers! Ensure your baby's safety in well-trusted hands so that you can truly relax and enjoy a soothing bath or a good workout.Our bodies change post pregnancy but they needn't be flabby, obese and uncared for. With the right care and discipline, they can be stronger, leaner, fitter than ever before! 

What Do I Expect in Babies growth... Weight, Length, Brain growth...

Dr. Poonam.M. Sambhaji, Pediatrician
Hello,When a baby enters a pediatric clinic for a WELL BABY VISIT, many a times I as a doctor find that parents do not know what is the purpose of the visit. Today I thought of making a list of this. Few things to keep in your mind before visiting your doctor:Feed yourself and your baby before going, so that baby is calm, and you are also full of energy to care fore baby.Carry a quick snacks like fruit sandwich etc and water in sipper ( for a baby on complementary feed )Take a baby bag with diapers, wipes and disposable plastic bags.Carry medical record file with  immunization card and old prescriptions .Carry a toy for the kid.Dress yourself and your baby in comfortable cloths, (easy for you to feed), Baby should be easily undress-able. Most important Write down your questions and concerns and bring them with you. This will help you get the most out of the visit. This saves your time, as well as doctors time, and for sure your doctor will appreciate this time management and organised behavior of yours.What should you expect in WELL BABY VISIT?Childhood is a time of rapid growth and change. Children have more well-child visits when they are younger. This is because development is faster during these years.Each visit includes:A complete physical exam. Child's growth checked by Length / Height, Weight, and Head circumference, and Development in order to find or prevent problems.The provider will record your child's height, weight, and other important information.Even if your child is healthy, well-child visits are a good time to focus on your child's wellness. Talking about ways to improve care and prevent problems helps keep your child healthy.This is also the time to discuss about Vaccination schedule of your baby. After the baby is born, the next visit should be 2 to 3 days after bringing the baby home (for breastfed babies) or when the baby is 2 to 4 days old (for all babies who are released from a hospital before they are 2 days old). Some providers will delay the visit until the baby is 1 to 2 weeks old for parents who have had babies before.After that, it is recommended that visits occur at the following ages (your provider may have you add or skip visits depending on your child's health or your parenting experience):By 1 month2 months4 months6 months9 months12 months15 months18 months2 years2 1/2 years3 yearsEach year after that until age 15This visits will keep a track on child's weight height and growth. With changing life styles its important to maintain a BP check also of children once in a year. Always make it a habit to undress the baby as much as possible and socially acceptable before doctor starts examining him/her. If child is more than 1 year make an attempt every time to explain to baby that Doctor will only check him, and not do any harm. It is important that the baby knows what he/she is to expect on examination table. Usually in Pediatric clinic we try to examine the baby  on mothers lap, so that baby is comfortable, but at times we need to examine on examination tableAlso, you should visit a provider any time your baby or child seems ill or whenever you are worried about your baby's health or development.Happy parenting!

A Beginner's Guide to Effective Breastfeeding Techniques

Dr. Noela Andrew David, Homeopath
Its such a joy to enter and experience Motherhood.  I am sure every woman enjoys this transition from a girl to becoming a Mother.  Though the thought of a baby is euphoric, it is not easy task.  The Mother has a lot to be careful about and learn about to enjoy being with the newborn,  and attending to his needs.  The most immediate concern post delivery is feeding the baby.  The neonate has to be feed every 2 hrs and so will his nappy changes be too.  Breast feeding is a tough task for a mother as she is so week herself to spend so much time and attention to breastfeeding.  However, it is the best way to bond with your child and if breastfeeding is done in right manner the Mother will be able to do it with ease.Following as practical advises to cherish effective breastfeeding:Never feed the baby in lying position.  Especially post cesarean section, the mother finds it difficult to sit and feed due to the fear of stiches getting torn.  In such cases the mother can elevate the bed to a position at 45degrees and then hold the baby resting on your hand and feed.  Latter on always sit on chair with erect posture and feed.Never feed the baby bending forward, but always sit erect and lift the baby upwards towards your chest.  This is done to prevent backache to mothers as this can make it difficult to sit for long hrs and feed.New born's are easily prone to stomach infection.  Therefore, it is advised to always wipe your hands, nipples, and area surrounding the nipples with clean water every time to take the child to feed.  This is done to prevent the child from any infection.Once you have lactated the child always make it habit to immediately hold the child straight on your chest and pat the back to ensure the child has burped or else the child may vomit the milk it has taken.whenever you feed the child use one finger to push the breast away from the nose of child while its taking its feed to prevent breathing difficulty.