The One Year Mark – What Diet Changes Should I Make at 12+ Months?
Babies grow up faster than you might expect. Before you know it, your newborn will be walking around as a toddler. When this happens, it can feel as though everything you learned about the proper care of your child has to be reconsidered and changed.
When it comes to dietary habits, the one-year mark does require some careful reflection on how to proceed with providing the necessary nutrition for your child. The entry into the toddler years means that you will gradually move away from breastmilk and infant formulas and into more solid foods and toddler milk. Having some guidance to walk you through the changes that need to be accounted for will help you navigate this transition with ease.
Let’s look at some of the important things that you need to consider regarding your child’s diet once they have reached the one-year mark.
Swap Out Infant Formula
One of the first things that you need to consider is weaning your toddler off of infant formulas and gradually converting them towards pure cows’ milk. While infant formula is full of great nutritional value, this is not a product that can be consumed for a lifetime. Your toddler will also be increasingly interested in consuming what the rest of the family eats as time goes on.
However, the jump from infant formula to pure cows’ milk can be a big transition for some children. It is important to be aware that the digestive system of your toddler is still developing and changing all of the time. It may be sensitive to a big transition such as this. In these cases, it is a good idea to consider toddler milks as an intermediary step. Toddler milks provide more nutrition to meet the increased demands of a growing child while being easier to digest that pure cows’ milk. This makes it an effective tool for smoothing out the transition from infanthood to the toddler years.
Start With Solid Foods
After the one-year mark, your child can likely consume most solid foods as long as they are sufficiently broken down beforehand. Choking is always a hazard with toddlers who often, literally, bite off more than they can chew. Allergies are also sometimes an issue during the toddler years, so be sure to look out for any signs of discomfort or distress after eating foods that are common allergens.Remember that your child is still developing motor coordination skills, so they will not be able to follow the Emily Post guidelines for table etiquette. In fact, you will have to feed your child for some time, as they will likely be unable to guide a spoon towards their mouth with ease. Foods that can be consumed by hand are also a good option for helping your child to feed themselves.
Make It A Balanced Diet
With the introduction of solid foods, it becomes more important to ensure that your child is getting abundant amounts of vitamins and minerals from a variety of food sources. It is senseless to count out the daily nutritional intake of your child, as this is far too time-consuming and ultimately unnecessary. Simply ensure that you offer your child a diverse array of different foods throughout the week to avoid any chance of a deficiency.
Eating With Ease
These tips will help you navigate the nuances of your toddler’s dietary needs. Consulting with doctors or nutritionists is always a good idea if you have any questions or concerns about your child’s nutritional intake. As long as you vary their diet and they tolerate new foods with ease, then you can likely be confident that you are doing a great job.