Have you just introduced solid food to your baby? Are you wondering if biscuits are an option to be considered? Choosing the right baby food might get challenging at times especially when your child is just old enough to consume solid food. Solid food is included in a baby’s diet after six months and gradually increases, as the baby grows older. It is hence very common that babies are fed with food, which mostly parents think may be safe for their little one.
However, when it comes to biscuits, many parents are confused. While they are an easy-to-get and easy-to-hand-over option; whether they are the right choice or not is questionable. Biscuits and cookies are usually given to babies to munch on or dunk into the milk and have.
They make easy-to-manage chewables for the teething phase and babies love these flavored delights.
However, it is important to understand that not all biscuits can be given to babies. Read on to find out why.
Why Can’t I give Biscuits To My Baby?
Here are some reasons why biscuits might not prove to be the best food choice for your little one:
Biscuits are processed. In order to have a long shelf life, they come loaded with preservatives like BHA and BHT, raising agents like baking soda, emulsifiers like glycerol monostearate and flavoring agents, as natural flavors are not always possible.
They are also not fresh. Refined wheat flour, trans-fat, additives, and other synthetic substances are added to them. That is why biscuits do not make for a healthy feeding option especially when solid food is being introduced to the baby.
These ingredients are dangerous to a baby and can cause digestive issues, constipation, and even trigger allergic reactions.
#2. Excessive Sugar
Market made biscuits contain high amounts of refined sugar to lend them a good taste. However, excessive sugar can cause sugar rushes in the baby and get her addicted to biscuits. Also, the sugar used in the manufacturing of biscuits is called invert sugar which is sweeter than regular glucose and can make your child susceptible to early diabetes, obesity etc.
Biscuits contain gluten and soya lecithin. These substances may cause allergic reactions in babies like rashes, cough, cold, or lung inflammation.
#4. Empty Calories
Biscuits successfully satisfy hunger in babies but are empty in calories, which means they do not contribute towards healthy nutrition. Market-made biscuits qualify as junk food for your little one. They do lend energy, but not nutritive. Therefore, these are not healthy foods that help your baby grow and develop better.
Also Read: How much calcium does your baby need (with food chart for 6 months to 3 years)
Are all Biscuits Bad For My Baby?
No, all biscuits are not bad for your baby. Infact homemade biscuits are an excellent, healthy food option for your little one. This is because, not only can one make biscuits at home using healthy grains and flours, but even the sugar content and its type can be regulated.
Homemade biscuits are free from preservatives and synthetic substances. You must never add baking soda and refined flours when making biscuits for your little one at home.
Instead, opt for healthy ingredients, some of which are –
- Ragi flour
- Gram flour
- Whole wheat flour
- Foxtail millet
- Dates syrup for sweetness
- Homemade white butter
- Almond powder
If you cannot bake for any reason, you may also opt for store bought organic biscuits. However, contacting a local bakery or home baker to bake using your ingredients would still be a better option.
You might also like: 21 Weight Gain Foods for Babies
Biscuits and Teething
Babies start teething after six months and this is the time they also start consuming solid foods. While teething, it is recommended to give foods that are firm and cool for the baby to chew on, but nothing that is freezing or too hot. Biscuits are often hard and firm. However, as the baby nibbles on them they easily melt in the mouth. This makes them good finger food options during teething. They seem to soothe the discomfort and are beneficial in getting your baby used to chewing and solid foods.
However, as mentioned above; it is necessary to choose the right biscuits or crackers for your little one. Market-made, packaged biscuits are a strict no for babies and toddlers. Opt only for homemade or organic cookies when your baby is teething. Another important point to remember is that biscuits or any other sugary foods when given during teething, may eventually lead to tooth decay or cavities in toddlers. So make sure to limit the number of biscuits in a day.
Also, cultivate a habit of brushing your little one’s teeth twice in a day to protect from decaying or cavities. For babies, simply use a thick bristled finger brush or just rub your finger gently all over the gums to clean and massage them.
Also Read: Your Guide to Weaning Your Baby