Before I go on about the facts surrounding infants and their complementary feeding. I would like to establish who an infant and what complementary feeding aims to achieve.
Who is an infant?
According to World Health Organization (WHO), a newborn infant, or neonate, is a child under 28 days of age. During these first 28 days of life, the child is at highest risk of dying. It is thus crucial that appropriate feeding and care are provided during this period, both to improve the child’s chances of survival and to lay the foundations for a healthy life.
“Appropriate feeding” above mainly emphasizes on proper breastfeeding of the child. We will take time to make a post on breastfeeding and why it is crucial. Stay tuned…
What is complementary feeding?
According to WHO, when breast milk is no longer enough to meet the nutritional needs of the infant, complementary foods should be added to the diet of the child. The transition from exclusive breastfeeding to family foods, referred to as complementary feeding, typically covers the period from 6 to 18-24 months of age, and is a very vulnerable period. It is the time when malnutrition starts in many infants, contributing significantly to the high prevalence of malnutrition in children under five years of age world-wide.
Further more, WHO recommends that infants start receiving complementary foods at 6 months of age in addition to breast milk, initially 2-3 times a day between 6-8 months, increasing to 3-4 times daily between 9-11 months and 12-24 months with additional nutritious snacks offered 1-2 times per day, as desired.
- Infants usually double their birth weight by 4 to 6 months of age and triple it by the age of 1 year.
- Total body fat increases rapidly during the first 9 months, after which the rate of fat gain tapers off throughout the rest of childhood.
- Total body water decreases throughout infancy from 70% at birth to 60% at 1 year.
- The stomach capacity of infants increases from a range of 10 to 20ml at birth to 200ml by 1 year, enabling infants to consume more food at a given time and at less frequent intervals as they grow older.
Here are few complementary feeding recipes we have adapted and formulated to give your child the required nutrient boost plus they are fast and easy to prepare.
Send us a message right now if you’d like to order the Better Food Better Pikin ebook.
We’ll send it to you free of charge. It’s an incredible collection of more than 30 nourishingly delicious complementary food ideas and recipes. It also describes the national food dietary guidelines for feeding your baby.
Some Complementary Feeding Recipes
Mashed Potato Meal
5 medium size Irish potato, 2 tablespoons of blended crayfish, 1 tablespoon of palm oil.
Peel the Irish potato, wash clean and cut into cubes.
Put into a clean pot and add water, put on fire and allow to boil for few minutes.
Then, add the crayfish and palm oil.
Allow to simmer and mash while stirring. After which it’s ready to serve.
Nutritive Value Per 100 gms:
Depends on units and types of food items included in the mix.
Mixed Fruits Puree
Watermelon (1/8 portion), Banana 3 fingers and as much fruits you can add. (Note: Take out every seed).
Rinse the fruits properly with salt and water.
Remove the pod and skin of fruits, cut into cubes and pour into a clean bowl and then pour into blender and blend. After which it ready to serve.
Nutritive Value Per 100 gms:
Depends on units and types of fruits included in the mix.
Wheat Food Mix
About 1 cup of Wheat, 3 tablespoons of Groundnut, 4 tablespoons of sugar.
Clean and roast wheat and groundnut separately (Remove the outer skin of groundnut).
Grind roasted groundnut and wheat separately to a fine powder.
Mix all the ingredients thoroughly and add very little powdered sugar.
Take about 4 tablespoons of this mix, add 100ml of boiled water to get thick consistency.
Add a teaspoon of oil e.g. palm oil, now you can serve.
Nutritive Value Per 100 gms: (Estimated)
Calories – 386
Protein – 11.64 g
Iron – 3.75 mg
Carotene – 51.5 µg