Carrot for Babies – When to introduce, Benefits

Carrot for Babies – When to introduce, Benefits

 

When it comes to nutritional salads, carrots have an important place in the collection along with cucumbers, tomatoes and beetroots.

 

Making carrots a part of your baby’s palate is not as straightforward and certain points need to be observed before introducing them.

When to Introduce Carrot in your Baby’s Diet?

Many parents think that boiling carrots for baby food is the quickest way to include them in their diet.

However, the time needs to be right as well.

As with most other vegetables, the appropriate time to introduce your baby to carrots is when he is about 8 months old. Even so, it is best to check with your doctor before starting solid food items.

Nutritional Value of Carrot

 

Carrots

In 100 grams of carrot, the nutrients present are as follows:

Description Quantity
Vitamin K 13.2 mcg
Vitamin E 0.66 mg
Vitamin A 835 mcg
Choline 8.8 mg
Vitamin B9 19 mcg
Vitamin B6 0.138 mg
Vitamin B5 0.273 mg
Vitamin B3 0.983 mg
Vitamin B2 0.058 mg
Vitamin B1 0.066 mg
Vitamin C 5.9 mg
Fluoride 3.2 mcg
Selenium 0.1 mcg
Zinc 0.24 mg
Copper 0.045 mg
Manganese 0.143 mg
Sodium 69 mg
Potassium 320 mg
Phosphorous 35 mg
Magnesium 12 mg
Iron 0.3 mg
Calcium 33 mg
Fat 0.24 mg
Protein 0.93 mg
Fibre 2.8 g
Sugar 4.74 g
Carbohydrates 9.58 g

Benefits of Carrots for Infants

 

1. Healthy Body Cells: Carrot contains certain properties that directly affect the cell growth mechanism. This ensures that the growth of cells in not unchecked and uncontrolled. On the other hand, in areas where cell growth needs to be rapid, such as injuries or wounds, carrots help assist in healing those areas.

2. Better Liver Functioning: On the event of any toxic chemicals entering the body, the primary organ to be affected is the liver. Carrot contains properties that not only support body cells but also helps protect the liver from the effects of such harmful chemicals.

3. Strengthens Immunity: The most important thing that a baby requires is a strong immune system. Lymphocytes and blood platelets play a key role in keeping the balance of immune system and ensuring its strength. Carrots help improve the numbers of these entities that boost the immunity within the child.

4. Better Circulation: A circulatory system not only transports oxygen through the heart and blood vessels but also helps flush out the toxins from the body, thanks to the kidneys. Carrots contain flavonoids, which are micronutrients. These directly improve the health of the heart and kidney, making them function better.

 

5. Improved Eyesight: Vitamin A and beta-carotene are the two essential elements responsible for developing a good eyesight. These affect the growth of the retina and help maintain it in proper condition. Carrot contains both these elements in good amounts, helping maintain a clear and sharp vision.

ALSO READ: Skin, hair benefits of carrots

Baby Carrots or Regular Carrots- Which are Good for Babies?

 

Ideally, baby carrots are same as that of regular carrots.

The only difference is that these are harvested before they have a chance to grow to full-sized carrots. Their flavour is slightly sweet and they are a little soft, too.

However, many baby carrots in markets are usually full grown carrots sliced down to a smaller size.

These ones are low in nutrition as well as have been found to contain chlorine.

Therefore, it is best to purchase full-grown regular carrots.

How to Store and Select Carrots for Your Child?

 

Go for carrots that are uniform in colour and do not have any splotches on them. Fresh carrots do not have any external growth or stem on their bodies. If a carrot’s body has scaly surface or holes, there’s a chance that pests have attacked the carrot so it is best avoided.

Cooking Carrots for Baby Food

 

1. By Steaming: Steaming carrots is the easiest way to cook carrots for your baby. It helps to contain all the nutrients in the carrot and ends up softening it as well.

Cutting the clean carrots in strips and steaming for about ten minutes makes them soft enough to be consumed.

2. By Boiling: Boiling is yet another simple way to prepare carrots for your baby. Whether boiled in a pressure cooker or a pot, the water used for boiling also contains many nutrients of the carrot. Boiling carrots for about half an hour makes them soft, and the water can be used in a puree or a broth, along with mashed carrots for babies.

 

3. By Baking: Baking carrots is a great idea for making a quick snack for the baby. Cutting carrots into long thin slices, placing them in an oil-greased dish, and baking them until they are dark orange, makes them ready to be consumed easily.

4. By Roasting: For a slightly older child, a roasted carrot could bring the crunchiness that he likes. Preparing them is quite easy since barely any ingredients are required. Cooking carrots in a non-stick pan for 30 minutes roast them really well, and can even be included as part of other recipes.

About The Author

Osigweh Lilian Oluchi is a graduate of the University of Lagos where she obtained a B.A (Hons) in English, Masters in Public and International affairs (MPIA). Currently works with 1stnews as a Database Manager / Writer. [email protected]

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