There are many benefits of bananas for babies. One of the first foods that are introduced to babies is a banana. Bananas are loaded with nutrients and are a storehouse of energy. The percentage of fats in bananas is zero and is really easy to digest and they are hypoallergenic. The sweet taste and soft texture of bananas make them an instant hit with most kids!
Moreover, babies don’t really have to chew them. Banana is a wonder fruit for your kid and can benefit him/her immensely. Another advantage of giving a banana is that it is easily available, cheap and easy to carry in travel, doesn’t need to be washed and you can puree it with a fork while on the move.
Benefits of bananas for babies
#1. Less risk of allergies
Babies are prone to food allergies and as soon as mothers introduce solids, they have to be alert to watch out for any allergic reactions. Most of the times, allergies are caused due to amino acids which are indigestible for babies. Bananas contain simple amino acids, which are easily digestible and thus there is a very less chance of allergies due to eating bananas.
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#2. When to Introduce Banana to the Baby
It can be introduced in mash form to babies after 6 months of age. This sweet and creamy fruit is available throughout the year and can be used to satisfy your baby’s craving for something sweet as well!
Selecting a Banana
While selecting bananas, make sure there aren’t too many black spots on the banana. It should be yellow or yellow with a tinge of green. If it is too green, then it could be unripe and unsuitable for consumption by a baby.
Storing a Banana
You can store a banana at room temperature. There is no need to refrigerate it. Once you’ve pureed it, you may refrigerate it for some time. Pureed banana or a peeled banana will become brown after a while, however, it is safe for consumption.
Best time to feed the banana to baby
The best time to feed a banana to your baby is in the summer season. If you want to give banana in winters, you should give it during the daytime, when it is sunny.
Health Benefits of Bananas for Babies
#1. Instant Source of Energy
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Packed with energy, they can help to keep your kid active throughout the day. In fact, they are considered as a ‘Sports Food’. Bananas provide instant energy to babies as they contain lots of Vitamin B6 and carbohydrates and can keep you going for about 90 minutes! That’s the reason most athletes eat bananas as it gives them an instant energy boost.
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#2. Improves eyesight and bones
Bananas are rich in potassium and thus help to improve vision and strengthen the bones. Potassium also helps to reduce muscle cramps and helps to get rid of fluid retention in the body. Potassium is also helpful in keeping a check on blood pressure levels and keeps the heart healthy. Potassium also neutralizes any sodium that your child has had and this helps to make the bones strong. Bananas also contain abundant Vitamin A, which protects the retina from contracting any diseases and thus makes the eyesight strong.
#3. Aids in Digestion
Image Source: constipation experts
Bananas contain a water-soluble fiber called pectin which aids in digestion and prevents gastrointestinal problems in kids. The pectin helps to break the carbohydrates into simple sugars, and this aids in digestion. The huge amount of fiber in bananas helps to keep your baby’s tummy full for a longer duration of time and is a great snack to carry while travelling.
Bananas are a rich in Vitamin C, which helps to prevent urinary infections in babies. Diarrhea and constipation are very common in babies. Bananas help to control diarrhea and supply the baby with the lost nutrients. Mashed banana can help to treat constipation in babies, as it contains dietary fiber, which helps to add bulk to the baby’s stool and absorbs water. This makes it easy for the baby to pass stool.
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#4. Good for the brain
Bananas are a great way to boost brain power and improve circulation in your child’s body. The presence of potassium in bananas helps to improve the concentration power of babies. The norepinephrine and serotonin present in bananas help to lift the mood of your baby and elevate depression. The antioxidants found in bananas also help to protect children from various chronic diseases.
#5. Help in preventing anemia
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Bananas contain various important nutrients such as iron, Vitamin B12 and folic acid which help in producing red blood cells and thus help to prevent anemia in babies. Bananas help to increase the hemoglobin levels of the body and prevent your child from becoming anemic.
A word of caution
Never feed a raw banana to your baby as it is very hard to digest.
Avoid giving your baby banana if he/she is suffering from cold and cough. Bananas can aggravate the cold.
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Include bananas in your child’s diet to give him/her an instant boost of energy after playtime or during breakfast. When starting, you can mash a ripe banana and feed it to your baby. Children older than a year, who have been introduced to cow milk, can be given banana shakes. Apart from this, you may also add sliced bananas to salads, cereals, smoothies and yogurt.
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