Carrots for babies
Carrots are healthy for everyone, including babies. They are one of the richest sources of beta-carotene. Beta-carotene gets converted to vitamin A in the body. Vitamin A is good for the eye, skin, and immune system. Carrots, being rich in fiber, helps prevent the baby from getting constipated. They also contain vitamin K, which helps in blood clotting.
Carrots provide a very good food option during the weaning period of the baby. They are creamy, sweetish, and bland enough not to irritate the baby’s gut. Pureed carrots should ideally be introduced when the baby starts having solid foods. They blend well with other vegetables and fruits. All these advantages make carrots a palatable option for the baby.
Things to keep in mind while starting carrots for your baby:
- Do not give carrots if your baby is less than 6 months of age. Carrots bought from the market are known to contain nitrates. These may cause the baby to have abnormal red blood cells.
- Select fresh carrots and clean them well. Select fresh carrots, which can be identified by their minimum sprouting and very little hair. Discard the ones with holes or scales (they may be pest-infected). If you want to store the carrots, peel their upper layer and cut their upper disks. Then, wash, dry, and refrigerate them in airtight plastic bags. Peeling makes the carrots easy to digest for the baby. The chemicals are also more concentrated in the peels. Ensure to wash them thoroughly under running tap water by gently scrubbing or brushing them.
- Prefer the regular (or long carrots) over the baby carrots. Long carrots are rich in nutrition, softer, and slightly sweeter than baby carrots. Baby carrots are also likely to be contaminated with chlorine.
- Check if your baby has an allergy to carrots. Babies are getting introduced to new foods. So, this is the time when you can know if they have an allergy to any foods. Once you start giving them carrots, give them alone without mixing them with any other food. You would not be able to understand if the reaction is due to the carrot or the combination.
- Also, start with a small serving. Once you know the baby’s body can tolerate the carrots, increase the serving size gradually.
- Do not give too much carrot puree or squash. Around two to three teaspoonful of carrot puree or squash is enough for them. More than this can cause a condition known as carotenemia. In this condition, the hands and feet of the baby turn yellow. The condition is reversible and the baby’s skin returns to normal once the beta-carotene clears from the body and carrots are discontinued from the baby’s diet for a while.
- Avoid the risk of choking due to carrots. Always boil or steam till you can smash with your finger but not so soft that it breaks before it goes in your baby’s mouth. If you want to cut the carrots and give them to your baby, cut it vertically in the form of match sticks or long sticks and not horizontally, such as making coin-shaped pieces.
Carrots can be eaten alone or combined with various fruits and vegetables because they enhance the flavor of other foods and add a sweet taste to the vegetables. Here are a few ways in which you can incorporate carrots into the diet of your baby:
- Steamed carrots (best method because it preserves the beta-carotene content and increases the amount of beta-carotene available for conversion to vitamin A in the body)
- Boiled carrots
- Carrot juice
- Carrot purée
- Carrot and spinach purée
- Sweet potato, apple, and carrot purée
- Mashed carrot
- Carrot and potato mash for babies
- Carrot apple sauce
Health Solutions From Our Sponsors
Nationwide Children’s Hospital. Homemade Baby Food: The Danger of Nitrates. June 19, 2014. https://www.nationwidechildrens.org/family-resources-education/700childrens/2014/06/homemade-baby-food-the-danger-of-nitrates
Top Are Carrots Healthy for Babies? Related Articles
Common Medical Abbreviations & Terms
Doctors, pharmacists, and other health-care professionals use abbreviations, acronyms, and other terminology for instructions and information in regard to a patient's health condition, prescription drugs they are to take, or medical procedures that have been ordered. There is no approved this list of common medical abbreviations, acronyms, and terminology used by doctors and other health- care professionals. You can use this list of medical abbreviations and acronyms written by our doctors the next time you can't understand what is on your prescription package, blood test results, or medical procedure orders. Examples include:
- ANED: Alive no evidence of disease. The patient arrived in the ER alive with no evidence of disease.
- ARF: Acute renal (kidney) failure
- cap: Capsule.
- CPAP: Continuous positive airway pressure. A treatment for sleep apnea.
- DJD: Degenerative joint disease. Another term for osteoarthritis.
- DM: Diabetes mellitus. Type 1 and type 2 diabetes
- HA: Headache
- IBD: Inflammatory bowel disease. A name for two disorders of the gastrointestinal (BI) tract, Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis
- JT: Joint
- N/V: Nausea or vomiting.
- p.o.: By mouth. From the Latin terminology per os.
- q.i.d.: Four times daily. As in taking a medicine four times daily.
- RA: Rheumatoid arthritis
- SOB: Shortness of breath.
- T: Temperature. Temperature is recorded as part of the physical examination. It is one of the "vital signs."
elemental infant formulaElemental infant formula is a special hypoallergenic formula used to feed infants who are allergic to or unable to digest cow’s milk, soy-based, or pre-digested protein formulas. There have been recent reports of broken bones, rickets, and other bone disorders in infants fed with Neocate infant formula. Side effects linked to Neocate infant formula include low phosphate levels in the blood (hypophosphatemia), rickets, fractures, nutritional deficiencies, stunted growth, skeletal deformities, and long-term skeletal damage.
Raw or Cooked? Get the Most Out of Fruits and VeggiesCertain cooking methods unlock more nutrients in fruits and vegetables. And, raw produce has its benefits. Here are some tips to get the most nutrition.
Healthy Eating: Veggies That Pack in the ProteinWhen you think protein, you probably think meat, eggs, and maybe dairy. But veggies have plenty of protein, too. Find out more from WebMD about which ones are the best sources.
infant formulaInfant formula is a special dried milk powder used as a substitute for or to supplement breast milk in the first 12 months of a baby’s life. Infant formula is made to resemble breast milk as closely as possible and attempts to provide all the nutrition a baby needs including protein, carbohydrates, fats, minerals, and vitamins. Infant formula provides nutrition and does not generally have side effects. Some infants, however, may have intolerance or allergy to milk proteins or soy, and special formula may be required for such infants.
What Causes High Calcium Levels in Infants?Elevated levels of calcium in the blood indicate a condition known as hypercalcemia. The causes of high calcium levels may vary with age and other factors. High calcium levels in infants can be caused by excess calcium in food, excessive vitamin D intake, excessive vitamin A intake, primary hyperparathyroidism or an increase in parathyroid hormone (PTH), cancerous tumors, injury to skin or fat tissue, infectious diseases (leprosy and histoplasmosis), immobilization or bed rest, and family history of genetic disorders.