New Canadian food guidelines reveal that babies as young as six months old should be eating meat, fish and poultry at each meal.
The news comes as a surprise to parents who have long since transitioned from breastfeeding to foods like cereals, vegetables and fruits.
“While meat and fish are traditional first foods for some aboriginal groups, the common practice in North America has been to introduce infant cereal, vegetables and fruit as first complementary foods,” the statement from Health Canada, and the Canadian Pediatric Society, Dietitians of Canada and Breastfeeding Committee of Canada reads.
Exactly what and how much babies should be eating will vary from baby to baby. “Infants should be offered iron containing foods two or more times each day. They should be served meat, fish, poultry or meat alternatives daily. The amount of food offered should be guided by the infant’s hunger and satiety cues,” according to health officials.
Adding these types of non-traditional baby foods will help significantly in meeting the daily iron requirements for infants.
Health experts advise new moms to breastfeed exclusively for six months, introducing these new foods into the baby’s diet at six months old.
The new report has some parents confused as conflicting messages are being relayed every year. Reader Orphina99 commented on CBC’s article saying “it all depends on who is working at Health Canada at the time. They told me something different when my now 8 year old was born, and it changed again when my now 5 year old was born. Breastfeed, and trust your instincts mothers. The conflicting information for new parents out there is overwhelming.”
Do you listen to the recommendations and guidelines of health experts or do you go with your instincts when it comes to raising your children?