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Feeding babies, infants and mothers

posted on 10th May 2012 by Stefan Chmelik

Babies and infants have different taste sensing to adults. They can surprise us by liking a flavour that we might imagine would be too strong, such as olives. Equally, because you might not like some of the things suggested here or would regard them as boring, it doesn’t mean your baby would. Note: the information given here is my opinion and is how we have fed our own baby. This is not the advice you would receive from a pediatrician. You should satisfy yourself as to the appropriateness of these suggestions for your own baby or child. My wife and I have taken a pretty different approach to feeding our baby than most people, basing our baby’s diet around a combination of Nourishing Traditions/Weston A Price Foundation information and Chinese medicine theory.

A word about quality and sourcing

I personally do my best to only feed my family on food that I have cooked from scratch myself and made from ingredients that I know where they have come from and how they have been produced. I do not necessarily trust an ‘organic’ certificate over a dedicated farmer that produces high quality produce by hand. We get 90% of our food from our local farmers market, which are now all over London. Babies and infants have different taste sensing to adults. They can surprise us by liking a flavour that we might imagine would be too string, such as olives. Equally, because you might not like some of the things suggested here or would regard them as boring, it doesn’t mean your baby would. Babies begin to develop taste buds just eight weeks after conception and are mature by 14 weeks. At birth, babies relish sweet flavours above others, a natural preference that ensures a liking for the sweet taste of breast milk. They are also programmed to react badly to bitter foods, as a protection against poisonous or spoiled food. Some hungry babies will want or need more than breast milk around six months. Some people may not have been able to breastfeed. The primary requirement for an infant in the first year or two is top quality fat, protein and minerals. Contrary to popular belief, infants do not need to eat grains if they are getting a good diet otherwise.

What we now avoid includes

  • Formula milk
  • Sugar
  • Grain in any quantity
  • Baby rice or any convenience food
  • Anything called ‘baby food’

 

Food suggestions – age 6-24 months

Protein:

Fish – sashimi, pickled, smoked, as pate with cream, fish eggs and roe

Dairy:

Raw full cream milk, butter, cheese, yoghurt, ghee

Animal protein:

Mince, chicken thighs, liver (also in pate or terrine), bacon, stir fried beef

Eggs:

Poached, scrambled with butter, boiled and sliced, egg yolks

Veg:

Roots and gourds – carrots, turnip, parsnip, beetroot, squash, pumpkin, sweet potato, yam, cauliflower, broccoli, onion, shallot, etc. Roasted, sautéed in butter/oil, mashed with butter/oil, with cheese sauce, peas and beans

Fruit – fresh, stewed and dried:

Apples, pears, plums, small oranges, figs, avocado, grapes, fried banana/plantain with cinnamon, lemon, lime

Oils:

Olive oil, sesame, walnut, rapeseed, coconut oil/butter, sunflower, pumpkin seed, hemp, flax, etc Fats: Butter, lard, beef dripping, coconut

Nuts/seeds:

Anything not roasted or salted and if not allergic

Spices/flavours:

Cinnamon, black pepper, ginger, lemon/lime juice

Other:

Seasalt, olives, humous, homemade stock, soups, stews, tamari (special soy sauce), a little sea salt, proper miso Note – do not microwave foods or drinks given to babies.

Some Meal ideas

  • Banana or plantain cooked with ghee and coco oil, mashed into minced chicken
  • Bolognese with rice or potatoes
  • Pickled herring and salmon eggs with cubes of cheese
  • Goat or sheep’s cheese with crackers
  • Scrambled eggs with smoked salmon
  • Sweet potato and bacon
  • Smoked mackerel/salmon/trout pate with gherkins
  • Avocado mashed with oil and sea salt
  • Stewed pear/apple and raisin with ginger and cinnamon
  • And any combination of the above ingredients…

 

Drinks

  • Raw full fat milk
  • Coconut water
  • Diluted fresh beetroot or carrot juice
  • Weak fennel or herb tea
  • Weak simple chicken broth

For baby’s with colic and reflux, focus on strengthening the beneficial microflora of the gut. Adult probiotics cannot be given to infants, so consider: Place a few drops of cultured vegetable juice on your baby’s tongue – this is the natural juice from a traditionally fermented vegetable preserve (such as homemade sauerkraut), which have undergone lacto-fermention, and are full of beneficial microorganisms that immediately begin to improve digestion Use small amounts of organic, grass-fed ghee on your baby’s tongue, as the clarified fats in real ghee are very healing to the gut lining, as well as complex proteins that will help a baby sleep through the night   Consider getting an expert evaluation for tongue-tie, if there are several of the symptoms below:

  • Colic
  • Acid Reflux or GERD
  • Clicking sounds while breastfeeding
  • Poor weight gain and failure to thrive
  • Irritability during and after breastfeeding

 

Resources

Feeding babies:

http://www.thehealthyhomeeconomist.com/2010/05/right-way-to-feed-babies/

Baby formula video:

http://www.westonaprice.org/beginner-videos/baby-formula-video-by-sarah-pope

Milk formula:

http://www.thehealthyhomeeconomist.com/2010/9/video-homemade-milk-based-baby-formula/

Homemade Milk Based Formula

Simple version, makes approx. 500ml:

  • 2 cups whole, raw milk
  • 1 cup filtered water or coconut water
  • 1/4 cup liquid whey
  • 1/4 tsp BifidoBacT (from Nutri Link)
  • 1/4 tsp2 caps S. Bouladii (from Nutri Link)
  • ?2 TBL good quality cream, raw if possible
  • 1/2 tsp unflavored, fermented cod liver oil
  • 1 tsp organic sunflower oil or hemp
  • 1 tsp organic, extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 tsp virgin coconut oil

Optional:

  • 1/4 tsp high vitamin butter oil
  • 2 tsp gelatin
  • 2 tsp Kefir
  • 1/4 tsp vitamin C powder

Instructions

Pour about half the water into a pan and put on low heat. Add the gelatin if used and let dissolve, stirring occasionally. When gelatin dissolved, remove pan from heat and add the rest of the water to cool. Stir in the coconut oil and butter oil until melted. Put remaining ingredients in a glass blender. Add the water mixture and blend for about 3 seconds. Place formula in glass bottles or a glass jar and refrigerate.

 

Full version, makes 36 ounces

  • 2 cups whole, raw milk
  • 1/4 cup liquid whey. Do NOT use powdered whey from the store or whey from making cheese.
  • 4 TBL Lactose
  • 1/4 tsp Bifidobacterium Infantis Powder
  • 2 TBL good quality raw or pasteurized cream (use 4 TBL if the milk is from holstein cows) Do NOT use ultrapasteurized cream!
  • 1/2 tsp unflavored, fermented cod liver oil (“salty cod” is the one you want)
  • 1/4 tsp high vitamin butter oil
  • 1 tsp expeller pressed, organic sunflower oil
  • 1 tsp organic, extra virgin olive oil (in a dark bottle)
  • 2 tsp virgin coconut oil
  • 2 tsp Frontier nutritional yeast flakes
  • 2 tsp gelatin (optional)
  • 1 7/8 cup filtered water
  • 1/4 tsp acerola powder

Fill a 2 cup Pyrex measuring cup with filtered water and remove 2 TBL (this will give you 1 7/8 cup water). Pour about half the water into a pan and turn burner on medium. Add the gelatin and lactose and let dissolve, stirring occasionally. When gelatin and lactose are dissolved, remove pan from heat and add the rest of the water to cool. Stir in the coconut oil and butter oil until melted. Put remaining ingredients in a glass blender. Add the water mixture and blend for about 3 seconds. Place formula in glass bottles or a glass jar and refrigerate.

 

Suppliers

  • Raw Milk & Raw Cream: Hook & Sons http://www.hookandson…
  • Liquid Whey (Made form Yogurt or Kefir). I used Abel & Cole’s Guernsey Yogurt http://www.abelandcol…
  • Lactose Powder: Brew 2 Bottle www.brew2bottle.co.uk
  • Probiotics from NutriLink 08450 760402, Quote code 285
  • Bifidobacterium Infantis: Biocare Brand from www.100percentnature.co.uk
  • Organic Acerola Powder: from www.superfooddirect.com
  • High Vitamin Fermented CLO from Blue Ice: www.red23.co.uk
  • Organic Raw Coconut Oil from Tropical Traditions: www.red23.co.uk
  • E.V. Organic Olive Oil from Abel & Cole: www.abelandcole.co.uk
  • Expeller or Cold Pressed Sunflower Oil from Clearspring
  • Nutritional Yeast Flakes from Engevita

Stewed Healing Apples and Immune Cofactors (thanks to Michael Ash)
Recipe

  • 6 Bramley cooking apples (or apples of choice preferably grown organically)
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/2 cup raisins/sultanas
  • 2 tsp. cinnamon

Peel and core the apples and chop them into small pieces. Put all the ingredients in a covered, heavy-bottomed pan and cook for about 15 minutes, stirring regularly. Cook until soft with rough shapes, no longer identifiable as apple slices. The colour should be a russet brown with the cinnamon effect.
These may be eaten warm, or cold. I suggest making up as many ramekins (sized to hold 1 – 1.5 apple equivalent in each and covered and put in the fridge for easy recovery and to avoid food deviation due to lack of availability and so maintain compliance.

Ingredients for secondary stage

  • 1 tsp. of larch arabinogalactans stirred into the apple to add sweetness – if required
  • 1 Saccharomyces Boulardii 250mg capsule sprinkled on the top – or swallowed separately
  • 1 mix of Bifidobacteria (mixed strains) (500mg) 5billion CFU sprinkled on top – or swallowed separately
  • 1 x LGG sprinkled on top – or swallowed separately
  • ••• container of organic natural yogurt approx. 75mg
  • Add 6-8 blueberries and 4-5 almonds in their skins
  • Finally, if required, a teaspoon of Manuka honey

Further reading:

  • Real Food (for mother and baby) by Nina Planck is a good source, as is Nourishing Traditions by Sally Fallon.
  • Importance of keeping warm after delivery: http://rhythmofthehome.com/archives/autumn-2010/mother-roasting/
  • Good article on what breastfeeding mum’s should eat: http://www.acupuncturebrooklyn.com/articles-by-karen-vaughan/feeding-breastfeeding-moms-to-promote-lactation

The info below is from http://www.plantoeat.com/blog/2012/03/how-to-feed-a-new-mother/

  1. Iron and Calcium-Rich Foods. It is oh so easy to become severely anemic after having a child and I have been there twice. Iron-rich foods can help a mother regain her strength and stay well. Foods like grass-fed beef and buffalo (especially liver) and dark leafy greens are examples. Calcium is also really necessary for the breastfeeding mother so high-quality dairy products, bone broths, and leafy greens are a good idea for calcium as well.
  2. Milk-Building Foods. First and foremost a mother needs plenty of calories in order to nurse her baby so be generous and make sure the family has more than enough food to eat. Foods known to enhance milk supply include oats, quinoa or other whole grains (especially if they are fermented), eggs (preferably from pastured chickens), leafy greens (I know!), and dark beer.
  3. Foods Easy To Digest. It is really important to be sure to keep digestion going right after you’ve had a baby. Good foods for this include anything containing probiotics like yogurt (make your own!), kombucha, kefir, sauerkraut, etc. and fresh fruits and vegetables.
  4. Restorative Foods. I’ve been told that we ought to think of recovering from birth like one would think of recovering from major surgery, so a new mother needs restorative foods. Foods that restore often contain electrolytes and other trace minerals. Bone broths are an excellent choice for making a big pot of soup or stew for the family, and make sure you include plenty of sea salt so she can replenish her fluids. Other options include fermented beverages such as water kefir, pastured eggs and butter (maybe with sourdough bread), and coconut water.

Diet for Pregnant and Nursing Mothers
http://www.westonaprice.org/childrens-health/diet-for-pregnant-and-nursing-mothers

FAQ-Diet in Pregnancy
http://www.westonaprice.org/faq/faq-pregnancy-and-feeding-infants

Nourishing Days:
http://www.nourishingdays.com/2011/08/my-pregnancy-diet-and-why-it-doesnt-have-to-be-yours/

Eat Right For Your Baby
http://www.amazon.co.uk/s/ref=nb_sb_noss?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=Eat+Right+For+Your+Baby&x=0&y=0

Children’s Health
http://www.westonaprice.org/childrens-health

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