Thursday, 19 August 2010

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How much food and in what proportion should baby eat?


According to my mother's group Ilona’s research, on average each meal baby eats should be around 130 – 150g. This also seems to be about the amount that J is eating. In fact, J sometimes and increasingly eats more than that!

Furthermore, the Danish authorities recommend a "Y" shaped "plate" for every portion, divided into 2/5 consisting of vegetables and fruit; 2/5 consisting of carbohydrates such as rice, bread, potato or pasta; and 1/5 consisting of protein such as meat, fish, egg or cheese.

Here is how I turn the above theoretical advice into practice when feeding J:

For each main meal, I serve J 5 cubes (i.e. ice cube size) of food for each main meal, consisting of:
- 2 cubes of vegetables,
- 2 cubes of carbohydrates and
- 1 cube of protein.

My favourite combination is:
- 1 cube of carrot (orange vegetable) and 1 cube of broccoli (green vegetable);
- 1 cube of potato (root vegetable that provides carbohydrates)
- 1 cube of brown rice or oatmeal (providing another carbohydrates source); and
- 1 cube of chicken OR fish OR red/mung/black beans OR an egg yolk (making up the protein portion).

For the protein portion, this is how I rotate it in a week:
- Day 1 - bean,
- Day 2 - chicken,
- Day 3 - bean,
- Day 4 - cod fish,
- Day 5 - bean,
- Day 6 - egg yolk and
- Day 7 - salmon.

In this way, I achieve the US FDA’s recommendation of eating beans 3 times a week and fish 2 times a week on a regular basis and I will also manage to give J egg yolk once a week. In addtion, i give a little yogurt to J everyday. Thus, in this way, a balance diet for J is achieved without forgetting a single source.

J is an exceptionally good eater, so usually he eats more than 5 cubes of food. So what I do is that I will then go on to serve 2 more cubes of vegetable such as broccoli or move on to serve him a dessert. My favourite dessert for him (and also his favourite) is 1 avocado and 1 banana mixed together.

If your baby doesn't eat as much, reduce the cube size so that you can still keep to the recommended number of cubes per serving.

I serve J 3 main meals a day: breakfast between 7 - 8am, lunch at 11 or 11.30am and dinner at 5 or 5.30pm.

I like to breast-feed J first before serving solids at each main meal, because breast milk is still the best for babies at this age.

However, as J gets older, i.e. 9 months old, milk gradually takes a secondary role. Thus, by that age, I like to serve solids first, and thereafter give him milk.

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