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A balanced diet

balanced diet

As your baby gradually begins to take less milk and more solid foods, it’s important to make sure that they are eating ‘a good balanced diet’.

This means making sure you include wide variety of foods from the main four food groups.  A good balanced diet for a baby includes:

Dairy products

  • Cheese, yoghurt, fromage frais and suitable milks.
  • Use full fat products; low fat versions are not appropriate for under-twos, as they contain less vitamin A and D.

These give your baby:

  • Energy, fat and protein for growth.
  • Calcium and vitamin D, which are needed for strong bones and teeth
  • Vitamin A, which is needed for growth and protection against infections.

Starchy foods

  • Bread, cereals, rice, pasta and potatoes.

These will give your baby:

  • Energy and carbohydrate for growth.
  • B group vitamins, which are important for energy too.
  • Fibre, which is important for a healthy digestive system, but don’t use high fibre versions.

Fruits and vegetables

  • Apples, pears, oranges, bananas, grapes, tomatoes, cauliflower, cabbage, and so on.
  • All fruits and vegetables have fibre, which is important for a healthy digestive system.
  • Leafy green vegetables provide iron for healthy blood, folic acid, and vitamin C.
  • Yellow and orange vegetables provide betacarotene, a form of vitamin A.
  • Berries and citrus fruits supply vitamin C.

Protein foods

  • Liver (no more than once a week and only if your child is not taking supplements containing vitamin A), meat, chicken, fish, eggs, sausages, tofu, pulses, e.g. beans, lentils (dhal) etc.

These will give your baby:

  • Energy, fat and protein which is needed for growth.
  • B vitamins, important for energy.
  • Minerals such as iron and zinc.
  • Sugary and fatty foods
  • Cakes, biscuits, jam etc. can be given occasionally but they are not necessary for a healthy diet.