Baby food. Things to look for when you buy one

The commercial baby food are a generally healthy and viable alternative for occasional use or to offer to the baby when eating away from home, but they should not constitute the child's daily diet, since, and although they are becoming healthier (and for a decade now are, by law, free of colorants and preservatives), food prepared at home still has advantages over industrial preparations. What should we look for in the labeling of baby food?

When complementary feeding is introduced, around 6 months, it is easy that the mother has already returned to her job outside the home, so if both parents work outside the home, time, in general, is scarce. As much as it hurts, the time we have to prepare the baby's meals is quite limited, so, sometimes, looking for the best for our little one, we have to resort to commercial alternatives for their feeding, such as the well-known baby food. .

- Ingredients
Observe the list. Do we know all the ingredients that are included? Are they in high quantities? If there is something that we would not add, that little food is probably not the most suitable. If the list includes only well-known foods, such as a high percentage of fruits or vegetables, a small percentage of olive oil, and has no salt, sugar, or artificial additives, that's our best choice. In addition, if the product specifies that the ingredients are from organic farming, we also make sure that they are free of pesticides, herbicides, growth hormones, antibiotics and other chemical compounds.

- Salt
We must make sure that the baby food does not have added salt, since our baby's kidneys are not prepared to filter excess minerals and can become overloaded. We can see two things, one, that the food itself specifies 'no added salt' and there is no salt in the list of ingredients, or that the amount of sodium in the nutritional composition is minimal.

- Sugar
As with salt, we must look for those that do not have added sugar, only that from the fruit it contains. As for honey, it should not be introduced into the baby's diet until at least one year of age. However, even if your little one is over this age, choose a baby food that does not contain honey. Honey, to tell the truth, simply contributes simple sugars (and traces, if any vitamin / mineral) inappropriate in the children's diet, since they promote obesity.

- Starches
Baby food usually includes starches in their list of ingredients, traditionally made from corn or rice, which are used as thickeners. Basically, they are an unnecessary source of sugar and their purpose is to give a semi-liquid consistency in the texture of the product. If we don't need them at home, why should we accept them in a commercial product? Choose a food that is starch-free or has a minimal amount.

- Juices from concentrate
Sometimes the fruit jars contain juices to increase the vitamin content of the final product. We must select those baby food that contain natural fruit juice, preferably in small quantities, and not from concentrate, since the concentrate is no more than a mixture of water, sugar and flavorings, increasing the content of simple sugars in the baby food. . Similarly, tomato paste in the preparation of a vegetable pot should also be avoided.

- Vitamin C
Make sure that the product you choose for your child has vitamin C of natural origin, such as citrus juice, and not added artificially.

- Oils
The list of ingredients specifies what type of oil has been used in the preparation of the baby food, so we must lean towards the one that contains extra virgin olive oil, as it is the highest quality for our little one.

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