Raspberries sound healthy, but should you give them to your baby? When deciding which solid foods to feed your baby, you want to choose those that are rich in vitamins and nutrients to help your child grow and develop. One healthy food that comes to mind is raspberries.
But while they are a tasty and healthy food, you may want to consider waiting to give your child raspberries until after his or her first birthday.
Raspberries, also known as hindberries, are an edible fruit. They contain significant amounts of antioxidants. It has one of the highest fiber contents of any fruit, and are a rich source of vitamin C, manganese, potassium, calcium, B vitamins, folic acid, magnesium, copper and iron. In fact, raspberries contain about 50% of the recommended daily allowance of vitamin C. Plus, they are very low in calories!
Can I Give My Baby Raspberries? Answer: After One Year
Raspberries have a natural substance known as elagic acid. This acid is considered to be a known compound to prevent cancer. Through studies, raspberries reduce high cholesterol levels too. They are even known to release carbohydrates into a diabetic’s blood stream.
Since it is considered a berry, raspberries are one of the foods most commonly responsible for allergic reactions, which is why you should wait until your child is at least twelve months of age before introducing them. The most common reaction to raspberries is itching or rash where the fruit comes into contact with the skin.
Some reactions can be more severe and result in swelling of the throat. Raspberries may also cause hives on the body, and some parents have found that raspberries worsen the symptoms of eczema or asthma. In some babies, raspberries can contribute to diaper rash, a reaction to the acidity in the fruit.
Possible Choking Hazard
Raspberries can pose as a choking hazard to your baby. Make sure that they are either pureed or cut into very small pieces. If you are giving your child raspberries as a finger food, make sure they are cut into fingertip size pieces. Continue cutting raspberries this size until your child has had his or her third birthday.
When picking raspberries, select plump, firm and fully red ones (or yellow or purple is that is the color of the variety). Unripe berries will not ripen after they are picked.
Raspberries do not last long (about a couple days in the refrigerator), and those that are bruised or brown are going bad. Actually, raspberries are generally expensive at the grocery store because their soft exterior bruises easily, making them harder to ship.
Also, raspberries have high levels of pesticides, so you may want to consider purchasing organic berries. If you purchase a lot of berries, but do not plan on using them right away, you can freeze them for later use. Tip: do not wash your berries until you are ready to use them. Do not wash your raspberries right away. Doing so will make them spoil faster.
If you plan on serving raspberries to your baby as a finger food, you need to make sure your baby is ready to handle them. Your baby will give you clear signs to let you know that he or she is ready for solid foods. Some of these signs include head control, sitting well with support, chewing motions, significant weight gain, growing appetite and showing curiosity about what you are eating.
Raspberries can be served whole as a finger food for your baby. You can also mash them with cream cheese and serve as a spread for sandwiches or crackers. Pureed raspberries can be added to pudding or oatmeal. You can even combine raspberries with other fruits and puree in a blender, then freeze in popsicle molds for a frozen tasty treat.
Remember that all new foods should be introduced to babies at least three days apart. If you plan on introducing raspberries to your baby paired with another food, make sure you pair it with one your child has already consumed. After the initial introduction, watch for signs of a food allergy. It is recommended to wait at least three days before introducing another “new” food to your child.
Typical signs of an allergic reaction can include swelling, cramping, rash, diarrhea or vomiting. Milder symptoms should result in a phone call to your child’s doctor right away. If your baby seems to be having trouble breathing, or is showing any symptoms that are more sever in nature, call 911 immediately.
Remember, raspberries can be introduced to your baby around twelve months of age. However, if your baby shows any sign of allergies, you must first consult your child’s physician before introducing raspberries to their diet.