Wednesday, 11 December 2013

Iron Rich Foods Help Baby Grow Healthy and Strong

Every mom wants their baby to have the best; the best toys, the best clothes, the best diapers, and the best nutrition.  
I am no exception! 

 I strive to make sure that my babies have healthy and homemade food when possible and even make purees and cereals for them when they are babies.  I am always worried that they are not getting all they need with the homemade foods and always try to have a meal or two a day that includes a pre made cereal like Nestle Gerber Baby Cereal.  It makes me much less worried about baby getting the proper amounts of important and needed nutrients!

One of the hardest nutrients to get my babies to eat and most importantly eat enough of is iron, and with their momma having a history of iron deficiency I try to be very aware of it.
 Did you know that Health Canada recommends that babies aged 6-12 months need to have iron rich meals at least 2 or more times a day! 
Now you may be wondering why is iron so important...well if you have ever suffered from iron deficiency you know. 
 Signs of iron deficiency are:
Slow weight gain
Pale skin
No Appetite
Irritability
and more lethargic with shorter attention span.
And what does iron do in the body? 
 Well iron carries oxygen from the lungs throughout the body and helps the tissues of the brain and body work.
Iron is essential for growth, cognitive and motor development as well as behavioral and nervous system development.  It is critical for brain development!!  We all know that the first years are so very important in brain development and the nutrition children get in the first two years can affect their health for their lifetime!

I always try to make iron rich foods like pureed brown rice and vegetables but learned that theses types of foods don't provide enough iron to meet babies daily need, and then I started to learn more :)
 Some great sources of Iron in meats are: 
beef, lamb, pork, veal, liver, chicken, turkey, fish and eggs
and some great vegetarian sources of iron are:
Pumpkin butter, lentils, chickpeas, grain cereals, whole grain bread, pasta and rice and enriched cereals.
I also learned that if you combine an iron rich food with a source of vitamin c you get extra absorption.
This is what lead me to Nestle as their baby cereal provides 100% of Iron daily needs per serving.  They also have no sugar salt preservatives, artificial flavor or color and they are the only baby cereal available in Canada that has Probioatic B lactis which contributes to baby's healthy digestive tract flora.  
I LOVE the the Nestle Gerber baby cereals are easy to digest and use pure ingredients and baby likes that they taste good!  (We have tried all the others and all four of my boys preferred Nestle Gerber Cereals)  
I also love that there are different ages and stages of the cereal so that as your baby grows you can add to their experience.  I know my babies start to not like purees at a certain point and are much happier to be given a cereal with different textures and taste!  Without this I would be in the 60% of moms who stop giving their children theses baby cereals between 10 and 15 months and therefore would have a very hard time getting enough Iron into my baby.

Find out more about Nestle Baby Cereals and many great tips on the www.nestle-baby.ca/iron

This post was generously sponsored by Nestle Gerber, but the opinions and images are my own. For more information, visit www.nestle-baby.ca. 

6 comments:

  1. I fed both of my kiddos Nestle products. They both had feeding issues so it was nice to have a product I could count on!!

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  2. Your mention of combining iron rich food with vitamin c really was helpful - thank you!

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  3. oh I kind of miss those days of Gerber cereal!

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  4. Very informative post! I really had no idea how important it was to make sure babies get 2 or more iron-rich meals per day.

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  5. Wait, you actually just described one of my tweens. Now I need to check and see if they need more iron when we go to the doctor this week. Thanks. We did use this cereal many many years ago now.

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  6. Balance nutrition is so important for a healthy baby. We started off with infant cereal and mixed it fruit veggies and meat to make sure our son was getting everything he needed.

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