by Christel Swasey

Healthy Smoothies For Babies

My 15-month-old baby is already becoming resistant to new foods. I fear I’m falling into a rut of feeding him the same snacks and meals over and over. For example, he loves oatmeal, but spits out bites of apples. So I haven’t offered him any pieces of apples for months.

Healthy snacking can be difficult for all of us, and we know how important it is to set the right example and engrain good habits in our children.  But when it’s easier to hand the baby a piece of a granola bar for the two hundredth time than to offer him diced, cooked green beans, and we know he’ll eat the granola bar, what usually happens?

Yet, if we don’t want our little ones to grow up with sugar addictions and aversions to leafy greens,  we have to keep offering the leafy greens and curb the high sugar eating habits.

How to do it?

It’s hard.  We live in a culture of sweets and fast, fatty, sugary foods.  This year, at the Christmas smorgasbord, my baby was reaching for the pretty cookies and wrecking his appetite for anything healthy.  I thought:  that looks like something I would do.  Yikes.

I decided I needed help with this issue, so I did some research.

The experts say parents should persevere with offering the baby healthy foods repeatedly, because research shows it can take as many as twenty exposures to a new food before a child actually tries it.  Parents should allow children to become familiar with new foods by presenting a teaspoon of the new along with their favorites.  And we must not call attention to the new food!

Along with the staple snacks that we’re familiar with, such as whole grain crackers, whole grain crackers, fruit, milk, yogurt, cheese, chopped hard-boiled eggs, scrambled eggs, dry cereal or cooked veggies, I found this great idea:  smoothies!

Homemade smoothies for babies.   What a great idea.  I can add some collard greens to his oatmeal.  I can add some pureed beets to his banana milkshake.  I can add some broccoli to his pudding.  I can add kale or cabbage or raspberries to his mashed potatoes and gravy.  The possibilities are endless.

Idea number two:

My sister in law taught me to use an ice cube tray to store cooked veggies in small portions in the freezer.  These can quickly be tossed into the microwave at meal times.

But now I’m thinking:  why not toss them into the blender along with some yummy thing that baby already enjoys?

I’m going to do this.  I think it will work.

Where did I put those collard greens?

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