Food tips for parents
NHS chiefs give weaning advice
A new campaign is encouraging Lanarkshire families to make healthy baby weaning food at home.
Health chiefs have put together a set of handy recipe videos that present basic recipes for different ages and stages to parents.
And the advice is that purchasing individual items and cooking meals yourself, rather than relying on jars and pouches, allows babies to try a variety of textures and tastes at a fraction of the price.
Angela Anderson, a nursery nurse with NHS Lanarkshire’s health visiting team, said: “Introducing your baby to solid foods can be a daunting experience and some families can feel that this is a little overwhelming.
“However, when you break the process down into small steps, you find that cooking healthy food for your baby is extremely easy.
“The step-by-step and easy to follow video guides introduces families to simple weaning recipes that can be easily adapted as their child grows.
“Every meal you give a young baby is a completely new taste experience for them, so they don’t need overly complicated mixtures.
“The best advice I can give a parent or carer is to be relaxed about the whole process, go at baby’s pace and make weaning a happy experience.
“This will also teach your baby that preparing and eating food can be a very social experience.”
The videos also explain the signs that families should look out for which show when their baby is ready to start weaning at around six-months-old.
Louise Gibson, paediatric dietitian, said: “I would recommend that families start weaning their children at around six months of age when their digestive systems and kidneys are able to cope with food.
“It’s also important to look out for signs of readiness to wean such as being able to sit up and support themselves, keep their head in a stable position and showing an interest in food.
“When your baby first starts eating solid foods, they will only take small amounts. It’s about learning to eat. It’s meant to be fun – make it as relaxed as fun and as messy as you can.”
The recipes are accompanied by a ‘supermarket challenge’ video, which highlights the savings that can be made by creating your own healthy weaning food.
By buying individual ingredients and preparing meals at home, you are able to save approximately £13 each week.
Susan Short, public health nutritionist, said: “In recent years, weaning jars and pouches have become a big hit among busy families.
“However, feeding your baby on these jars and pouches each day can cost approximately £25 a week.
“For a four week month, this adds up to over £100. It’s an enormous price to pay, especially for families who may be struggling financially.”
All of the recipes can be found on the NHS Lanarkshire website: www. nhslanarkshire.scot.nhs.uk/services/ infant-nutrition/weaning/ .
The videos will also be available on Facebook, Twitter, Vimeo and Youtube.
Tasty Videos show all kinds of recipes that babies will enjoy