When you become a parent for the first time, there are probably a million questions going through your head constantly. No one can prepare you for that magical moment when you hold your newborn for the first time and realise that you are now a mother or father to a child.
Bringing your newborn home for the first time is one of the most terrifying but exciting moments in many people’s lives. Will they be a good parent? Can they look after a baby? These are just some of the questions that people ask themselves again and again.
One set of questions that is asked by parents all around the world is related to what they should feed their baby. With so much information about there, as well as lots of friends and family members giving advice, it’s hard to know what’s best for your newborn. In this article, we will take a look at feeding your child and the pros and cons of preparing their food at home.
Feeding your newborn
When it comes to food for your newborn, there are two choices – breast milk or formula based food. The best option is to breastfeed your newborn, though for some people, this isn’t always possible. Where breastfeeding cannot be done, then you’ll need to feed your newborn with formula-based milk.
Most newborns will require feeding every 2-3 hours, and you’ll often need to wake them up during the night so that they can be fed. It’s important to encourage the newborn to stay awake during feeding. Most newborns will lose a little weight during the first few days after birth, but they will put this back on within a week, so if you do notice your newborn has lost a few ounces, it’s perfectly normal and nothing to worry about.
Moving from breast or formula milk onto solids
It is generally accepted that you should start introducing solids into your baby’s feeding times by the age of between 4 to 6 months, though it’s normal if it takes a little longer, as your baby may have some say in what they want.
If your child is able to sit upright and hold up their head, then they should be ready to move to start with solids, such as Yamo Babyfood. Other signs that your child is ready are if they have the ability to swallow, or if any reflux where they were bringing up a little milk after feeding has receded. One final sign is that your child may simply be uninterested in milk alone, so remember to keep an eye out for the signs.
Making baby food at home
One of the most frequently asked questions about baby foods is whether or not you should buy it, or if you should make it at home. There is no right or wrong answer, and the choice you make will be based on a number of factors. There are pros and cons of making it at home, and below we will take a look at each of them.
Benefits of making baby food at home
The most obvious choice of making baby food at home is the cost. It is much more economical to make it yourself, as some particular types of off the shelf baby food can be pretty expensive.
By making it yourself, you are going to have complete control over what goes inside it, and can manage all of the ingredients without the use of any preservatives, enhanced flavors, or additional salt and sugar. You’ll also be able to switch around ingredients if you notice that your child may have an allergy to a specific ingredient. You can find a great selection of ideas and recipes online for baby food.
Food allergies are quite common for some babies, and there are a number of food allergy tests that can be taken to determine if a particular substance such as cheese, beef or carrot is causing your child an allergic reaction.
You will also have the opportunity to introduce new tastes and flavors to your baby, which is very important for some cultures and countries, where the food that they eat can be very different from other parts of the world.
Disadvantages of making baby food at home
There aren’t too many disadvantages of making your own baby food, as it is in most cases the safest, healthiest, and most economical option.
One of the main cons of preparing baby food at home is the time it takes. You’ll want to make sure that you have enough prepared to last for several days and that it’s stored safely. Refrigeration is the best option for storing baby food that you’ve made.
Buying baby food from a store is much more convenient – there is no doubt about that. The food is ready to be used, without the need for any preparation. It’s also a lot more portable than something you can prepare at home, though if you have some small tubs or Tupperware, it shouldn’t be a big problem to carry around any homemade food with you.
If you do buy it from a shop, it’s very important that you read the labels properly and make sure to check the sugar and salt content. Some foods will contain a lot more than others, so just take care of what you end up purchasing.
Instilling good eating habits
It is very important for your baby’s development that you instill healthy eating habits from an early age. Making baby food at home is something that helps to incorporate your baby’s eating habits with yours at home. Feeding should be kept to a schedule once the baby has reached a certain age.
Unlike when they were newborns, they will be able to go a little time before needing to eat again, and this is an important thing to teach them as they grow up, as it can help to establish the importance of eating habits as well as a way of managing weight.
Some final thoughts
Parenthood is a part of many people’s lives and one that is unlike anything else they may have experienced up until that moment in time. It is only natural to have fears and worries about looking after a child and all of the responsibilities that come with it.
Fortunately, for most people, everything will fall into place, and the day you bring home your newborn will be the first day of the rest of your lives, and one that you will remember and cherish forever.