If you enjoy avocado, would your baby too? When your baby is ready to start solids, it is an exciting time for both them and you, the parent. As a newborn, your child is only consuming formula or breast milk for every meal. As an adult, the thought of consuming the same food (or drink) for every meal sounds awful.
Luckily, your baby’s taste buds do not know there is anything else out there other than what they are used to. Plus, formula or breast milk provides all the essential nutrients your baby needs for healthy growth and development, and will continue to be their main source of essential nutrients until after their first birthday.
Before your baby can begin solid foods, he or she needs to be able to handle them. Until around four to six months of age, your baby’s stomach is not ready or fully developed to handle anything other than formula or breast milk, which is why doctors recommend waiting until this age to start your baby on solid foods.
Can I Give My Baby Avocado? Answer: After One Year
Your baby must also be able to sit up with support and mush, chew or gum food in his or her mouth (not spit it back out, like most babies tend to do as a reflex).
Once your baby is ready to tackle solid foods, avocados are a good food to start with. Avocados, which are a fruit, have a high nutrient content and are rich in vitamins, minerals and healthy fats (especially vitamins A, C and some Bs). Healthy fats (which is what whole milk contains) are very good for your baby’s brain development.
Another reason avocados are a good food for your baby is because they do not have an overwhelming taste. While not completely bland, avocados have a natural flavor that is well tolerated by young children.
Starting Solid Foods
When your child starts solid foods, it is always best to serve them foods that have been mashed or pureed. Since avocados have very smooth textures, they can easily be mashed, creating a creamy substance for your child that is easy to chew and swallow.
Avocados make a great addition to lunch or dinner (or even a snack) because there is no preparation involved. Once you peel the avocado, simply spoon it out into a bowl and mash up for your baby. And voila! You have a ready-made meal. Avocados also taste great when mixed with other fruits or vegetables (and of course, as guacamole—but hold off on giving guacamole to your baby just yet).
If you would rather create a “meal” with avocados instead of serving them alone, there are plenty of baby food recipes that contain avocado that are available on the Internet or in baby recipe cookbooks.
When you first introduce avocados to your little one, make sure to either serve it alone or with another food your child has already enjoyed. Though not known to cause many allergic reactions, it is always best to wait three days in between feeding your child new foods. This way, if your child does have an allergic reaction, you will know which food caused it.
When choosing an avocado from the store, you want to select those based on your need. If you do not plan on using the avocado right away, you should select the avocados that feel hard. These avocados are not ripe yet, and will ripen over time on your counter. If you want to use the avocados soon, you should choose ones that are not hard, but not too soft. Too soft means they are over-ripe (and probably almost bad). For current use, choose the avocados that are soft to the touch, but not completely squishy.
Benefits of Avocadoes
Remember, your baby needs to be able to sit with support and mash food with their mouth before you can give them solids, which is usually around four to six months of age. Avocado makes a great solid food for your baby to enjoy. Not only are they high in vitamins, minerals and healthy fats, but they are also very easy to prepare. One simple slice of the peel and your baby has a tasty and healthy meal. It is easy to mash up and easy to serve.
If you have any questions about feeding avocados to your baby, it is best to consult your child’s physician. He or she will be able to answer your questions and discuss your concerns in more thorough detail.