No matter how diligent you are at providing baby with healthy food options, if you and the rest of your family sit down to junk food 6 days a week out of 7, chances are, all of your perfect, nutritionally sound intentions for baby will be in vain.
Children look to their parents and older siblings in order to emulate their values, attitudes, character and beliefs, so it’s not surprising that eating habits are also a big part of this.
Making the choice to feed your baby healthy, homemade food shouldn’t just be a choice you’re making for your baby, it’s also a choice you should make for yourself and the rest of your family.
Here’s a link to a great article on the subject at Kids Fitness Central website.
A good way to look at it is if the tables were turned and your baby son or daughter had to take care of you, they would most likely want to ensure you were nutritionally equipped to live a long, happy and healthy life. So by taking care of yourself, you are in effect honouring baby’s wishes had the choice been theirs to make.
I would never deny that I’ve been known to enjoy a bowl of potato chips here and there…salt & vinegar please…but for the most part I go for healthy choices, as do the rest of my family, so that’s what we want to instil in our youngest son as well. I don’t want to deny them the distinct pleasure of a sweet or nutritionally desolate snack or two every now and then, but I try to keep them few and far between. The idea is to create a world where if they’re craving something sweet, they impulsively go for Mother Nature’s candy like grapes or peaches rather than something reminiscent of “Willy Wonka & The Chocolate Factory.”
Here’s a great Butternut Squash Soup recipe that babies will love, and with the addition of some spices, adults enjoy as well. It’s a great “go to” soup recipe to keep on hand that will help you stay true to your total family wellness plan.
Family Style Creamy Butternut Squash Soup
Age – 8 months + (due to the addition of spices, but if you leave out the spices, 6 months +)
- 1 Butternut Squash
- 1 cup of chopped onions
- 1 garlic clove minced
- 1 ½ cups of homemade or low sodium chicken broth
- ¼ cup of 10% (half and half) cream
- 1 tbsp. butter
- 1 tsp. coriander
- 1 tsp. cumin
- ¼ tsp. black pepper
- Peel, seed and chop squash into approx. 1” cubes.
- Place squash in steamer over boiling water and cook for approx. 15 minutes until tender. Set aside.
- Meanwhile, chop onions and garlic.
- Add butter to a large soup pot and melt over medium heat.
- Add onions and garlic to butter and cook until translucent, approx. 3 – 4 minutes.
- Add steamed squash to soup pot along with chicken broth and ½ cup of the water used to steam the squash.
- Add in coriander, cumin and black pepper and cook over medium low heat for 10 minutes, stirring often.
- Remove from heat and puree with a hand held blender until you achieve a smooth, soupy consistency.
- Place pot back over medium heat and stir in the cream. Cook for 2 more minutes.
- Remove from heat and let cool for several minutes.
- Ladle out for a family meal and freeze the rest in freezing trays for baby to be used within 3 months.
Makes A lot! – Approx. 36 baby servings (2 tbsp. each) so it’s best to make for baby and the family to enjoy together. It would be too much to freeze and use up within 3 months unless you have at least 4 hungry babies in the house at all times. J
Tip – Adults can add a few drops of hot sauce to their individual bowls to give it an added kick!
Take care of yourself as well as you take care of your baby and family, and you will all reap the benefits of an invigorating, happy and healthy life together.