Weaning with Exotic Ingredients

All babies are born with a natural liking for sweet foods. This is a built-in system to protect them from dangerous foods which would have often been bitter, plus sweeter foods are also higher in calories to provide the energy needed for growth. However, too much of these foods are not good for dental health and increase the risk of obesity and type 2 diabetes.

Your little one needs to have a good range of foods, flavours and textures in their diet for healthy development. In the early stages of weaning you have the chance to help set your child’s taste buds and food preferences for life. Weaning is when taste buds and food preferences begin to develop, and therefore when a wide variety of food intake is so important.

Giving your baby the chance to experience as many tastes and different foods as possible will broaden their palate. It will help them to become a more adventurous (and less fussy) eater as they grow. The For Aisha range contains a selection of exotic ingredients that can help introduce new flavours to your child’s diet. You can then continue cooking similar adventurous meals at home.


Here are some top tips:

Start early:
The shaping of your baby’s tastebuds start even before they are born!

Consuming a varied diet of fruit, veggies, spices, highly flavoured foods, wholegrains and proteins during pregnancy will expose your baby to a range of tastes in the womb. This provides them the opportunity to like exciting flavours before birth so they’ll be more willing to accept them during weaning.

Let them be messy:
Babies wean using all their senses – they like finger foods, seeing colours, smelling and tasting foods. Providing a whole array of items for meal times gives them the chance to explore textures and tastes. Weaning is the perfect messy play!

Be consistent:
If your little one pulls a face or refuses a food, that doesn’t mean they don’t like it. It’s a very normal first reaction to the taste and aroma of new foods – so do persist and keep offering it. It will be worth it when they’re gulping down healthy meals.
You could also try foods cooked in different ways – for example roasted vegetables, a vegetable curry and raw vegetables.

Offer a rainbow of fruit and vegetables:
Giving a rainbow of vegetables over the week can help your baby explore a variety of tastes and it will also provide them with the necessary nutrients for healthy growth and development. This is a great practice to continue through childhood and can make eating vegetables fun.
Eating different colours ensures you get a range of antioxidants into your little one’s diet; for example, the beta carotene from carrots and the lutein from green peppers both aid eye health. The lycopene in tomatoes is an antioxidant that is good for the heart health. These small nutrients are powerful ones that help prevent the body from disease and infections.

Focus on a balanced plate:
Focusing on the balance in meals can help ensure that your little one gets all the nutrients they need. The energy needs of little ones are higher than adults, as they grow so fast! Ensure they have a range of protein, healthy fats, carbohydrates plus fruit and vegetables across their day. Meal planning over a week can help you plan ways to bring variety into the meal you create for your baby. It also makes logging what they eat easier if you wish to monitor progress.


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