As a child, you must have watched “Popeye, The Sailor Man”, and surely you know what gives Popeye the energy to fight against the bad guys just like Brutus. That is the spinach, of course. And in that kind of childhood program you watched, you want to retell that story to your child. It’s a good strategy because you may be able to encourage them to be like Popeye.
In all sense, spinach is indeed rich in Vitamin C, which actually helps in iron absorption. It has plenty of potassium and calcium. And just like other vegetables, spinach also has the presence of different minerals. This article helps you understand and discern the signs of spinach in your baby’s diet and you can also get some ideas on how to serve and introduce this to your baby.
What is spinach?
Spinach is a kind of vegetable that is commonly called ‘Super Food’ for it gives super energy to a person’s body. It is an amazing source of calcium. It contains vitamins and minerals, and also antioxidants. This leafy vegetable must be part of a baby’s diet as it contributes a lot to the baby’s physical development and can prevent diseases.
Spinach is also a kind of vegetable that is very versatile. Versatile in the sense that, you can actually make or prepare it for your kids in so many ways as long as you know how to.
When to introduce to your baby?
Your baby must be at least 12 months old if you wanted to introduce this kind of energy food. However, there are some babies who can actually eat solid foods as early as six months. It all varies to the acceptance of your child, and of course, your doctor’s permission.
The leaves of the spinach are rich in compounds called nitrates, which cannot be digested when an infant is still developing their digestive system. That is why having your doctor’s advice is essential in introducing new foods to your baby.
Spinach is a precious vegetable that is very rich in minerals. Here are the reasons why it is one of the perfect foods for your baby.
Makes the bones stronger
Because spinach is rich in minerals such as calcium, phosphorus, and magnesium, it is a good indication that it is actually a great help for the baby’s bones. Minerals play a very important role in supporting the development of a child’s bones.
Best for the muscles
For every 100 grams of Spinach contains 2.14 grams of protein. Meaning to say, it is a good vegetable source of amino acids and combines very well with other foods that are high in proteins, such as meats, cheese, and legumes.
Keeps the circulatory system healthy
The combination of protein and iron helps in proper circulation in the body as it helps in building the hemoglobin profile. It is also a common benefit of spinach.
Good for immunity
Spinach has all the major vitamins required for a very healthy immune system because Spinach is also rich in Vitamin K.
Good for the eyesight
Spinach is also rich in beta-carotene or Vitamin A, which aids in maintaining and improving the eyesight.
How to cook and prepare spinach for babies?
There are actually so many useful ways in cooking spinach, but boiling the water and putting its leaves in a hot water for like 20-30 seconds is good since frees the oxalic acid forms of the leaves. The acid should be removed because it can be slightly toxic and may affect the baby’s kidney. For some reason, it is really a mandatory thing to strain the water after boiling the spinach.
Delicious spinach recipes for your baby
This is by far the easiest basic spinach recipe for your baby. It works as a health tonic with all the benefits of multiple vitamins and minerals from its leaves.
Spinach with carrot puree
When carrots and spinach were combined together, it will result in high Vitamin A. This kind of puree will actually be good food for the eyes of the baby.
Spinach with banana mash
A combination of Banana and Spinach goes great since it reduces the slightly bitter flavor of the leaves, making it tastier for the baby.
Spinach with meat puree
Since meat is rich in iron and minerals, it really compliments very well with the spinach.
Spinach chicken soup
It is better to introduce soup for your baby in all flavors. When your baby likes soup, he or she will definitely love this spinach soup made with chicken.
Spinach and potato puree
In this kind of recipe, you can just simply use sweet potato or white potato since both add carbohydrates which gives energy to your baby.
Spinach puree with mashed boiled rice
Rice will always go well with different combinations. Meaning to say, it also goes well with Spinach Puree. Like bananas, rice can somewhat reduce the bitter flavor of the spinach because of its carbohydrate content.
These are just some of the spinach recipes you can make for your baby. If you are some kind of a master in the kitchen, and you have a lot of time to spend in cooking, then you can actually add up to make it tastier for your child.
In whatever the parents do, they only want one thing, and that is the health of their children. parents should always be very careful as spinach is one of the most common allergens. It might be good food for your baby since it gives a lot of nutrients, but there are times that it is very inevitable to have side effects. Just be observant of possible effects to your child, and always seek your doctor’s advice. You can just easily ask them questions because just like you, they also want what’s best for your child’s health.
In the end, it’s just a matter of tolerance. If the baby cannot take or you are having difficulty in feeding them those, then it’s best to just feed them with other foods. There are a lot of fruits and vegetables out there that you can introduce to them that are nutritious.