Eggs are packed with vital nutrients that are needed for the growth and development of the body. Including eggs in a baby’s diet can be beneficial for the better growth of your little one’s bones and overall health. However, it is important that eggs are introduced into your baby’s diet at the right age. This is because infants have sensitive digestive systems and your little one might find eggs difficult to digest resulting in allergies or digestive issues. In this article you can learn about the benefits of giving eggs to babies.
At the same time, delaying the introduction of egg in the baby’s diet is also not advisable if the baby is non-allergic. This is because, once you start introducing solid foods to the baby, the fat reserves start to deplete. Therefore, the babies need a food source that compensates for the healthy cholesterol and fats. Egg yolk is that perfect alternative that provides essential nutrition to the little ones; aiding the development of their organs and brain.
Therefore, it is advisable to include egg in the diet of your babies to ensure better overall growth. As the egg can be a cause of allergic reactions in some cases, its introduction needs to be monitored carefully.
Also Read: 18 Unsafe Foods For Your Baby before 1 year
Eggs can be given to the babies once their digestive system starts to mature a little. This happens around the age of 8 to 10 months.
As per the pediatricians, egg yolks should be introduced first. As egg whites are known to cause allergic reactions in many babies, kids, and even adults. So, avoid egg white until the baby is one year old.
Always introduce a small amount of egg yolk to your baby so that you can check for egg allergies. You can start giving egg yolk once a week and then increase the frequency slowly to thrice a week. Once your baby is more than one year of age you can start giving the whole egg. This again must be followed in the same pattern. By the time, the child is about two years old and has been having egg without any allergic reactions, you can start giving it on a daily basis.
The following are some common symptoms related to egg allergy:
In case of an allergic reaction, consult your doctor. The Egg must be discontinued with immediate effect until further guidance from the doctor.
Also Read: 21 Iron Rich Foods for babies and toddlers
Here are some important points to remember before giving eggs to your little ones:
It is always advisable to give eggs in little quantities to be on the safe side. Avoid giving the eggs with other allergy-causing foods like peanut butter, fish, etc.
Most of the babies may not show the allergic reactions immediately but these can surface by the age of three to five years. So be aware and alert.
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Always avoid raw, or half boiled eggs when it comes to babies, as they may contain a bacteria called Salmonella that can result in food poisoning. When an egg is given to infants, be sure it is firm from inside such that it is completely boiled/cooked. In the same way, foods containing raw egg like homemade ice cream, cake batter, or sweets need to be avoided.
Buy eggs from a standard supermarket, poultry shop, or poultry brand. This assures that the hens are vaccinated and free from the bacteria.
Always store the eggs in a cool and dry place in a well-refrigerated area to prevent them from going bad. Babies should be given fresh eggs and make sure they are not preserved for a longer time. Buy in small quantities and consume within a week.
Eggs are considered to be superfoods as they are loaded with all the nutrients the body needs and are a wholesome food item. There are various benefits of giving eggs to the baby and these include the following:
A single egg contains more than 200mg of cholesterol. The daily recommendation of cholesterols for babies is 300 mg. The cholesterol from eggs is mostly good cholesterol as it does not affect the quality of blood. Eggs do increase the amounts of High-Density Lipoproteins that are considered as good cholesterol. Giving egg regularly in children’s diet aids organ development. However, it is always advisable to avoid eggs in case there is a family history of hypercholesterolemia or ApoE4.
Eggs contain choline which is an essential nutrient and considered to be an important substance like vitamins. Including egg in your baby’s diet can have a huge impact on her mental as well as physical health. Whole eggs contain high amounts of choline. One egg offers 100 mg of choline essential for the development of the brain and whole body. Most babies do not get enough choline from normal foods. Choline is essential in building the cell membranes, which play a major role in providing signalling pathways in the brain. Brain functioning can be enhanced with the help of choline that acts as a neurotransmitter.
Eggs contain antioxidants such as Lutein and Zeaxanthin that have a significant impact on eyesight and the skin. Babies above six months of age require these nutrients in their diet to develop a healthy eyesight. Many pediatricians therefore, suggest to include eggs in the diet once the baby turns one year of age or even before. These powerful antioxidants can even build the retina of the eye and various research studies have shown their efficacy in reducing the macular degeneration; thus, improving the eyesight. In addition, egg yolk is a rich source of Vitamin A which is also known to help in the development and maintenance of healthy eyesight.
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Egg white is rich in proteins and essential amino acids that are considered as building blocks of the human body. They are required for formation of cells, tissues, and molecules that aid in normal bodily functions. Gaining the essential amino acids through food can be challenging for babies as they intake very little food as compared to adults.
Including egg in their diet at least once in a week can help in maintaining the required levels of these proteins and essential amino acids. A single egg contains 6g of the proteins required. These proteins also help to improve the muscle mass and maintain a healthy body weight in babies.
Including eggs in a baby’s diet can be an excellent source of Vitamin D. Thus, eggs play a vital role in bone health as Vitamin D enables calcium absorption in the body, which in turn is important for stronger bones and teeth. Vitamin D is not only needed for healthy bones but also for healthy skin and teeth.
Eggs contain all the essential amino acids required for the growth and maintenance of healthy nails and hair. The balance of unsaturated and saturated fats in eggs can be quite helpful to enhance your little one’s hair and make her nails stronger.
Egg is an excellent source of Vitamin B12 and folic acid that can improve the nervous system and baby’s brain. Folic acid is a water-soluble essential vitamin that improves the IQ levels in babies and is important for healthy brain growth.
Also Read: 13 Super Foods to Improve Babies Immunity
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