What Precautions to Take When the Baby Starts Eating Salt?

What Precautions to Take When the Baby Starts Eating Salt

How to Add Salt to Your Infant’s Daily Diet? Is Salt Necessary for A 6 Months Old Child?

Infants are not familiar with spices and salt because breast milk or formula milk doesn’t contain these things. They don’t desire salt because they haven’t tasted it. This mineral becomes a part of a child’s diet when parents decide to feed it to the child.

It won’t be a wise decision to add salt too early to the infant’s diet. People have several myths about eating salt. Doctors suggest that excess salt intake can have fatal consequences.

So, when you should start feeding salt to the baby? What is the right amount of salt to blend in the baby’s recipes? Let’s find out some important precautions for babies to eat salt and other important details.

Can Salt Intake Cause Health Issues In Babies?

Some people believe the baby is weak and unsteady because he doesn’t consume salt. It is just a myth and you should never trust such things. Your child does not need salt at his early age. The complementary food is just perfect to meet his nutritional need. There is no need to add additional salt or sugar to it.  

Do infants need salt at all?

People used to believe that lack of salt can reduce energy levels. There was a time when heavy physical work was common and people used to sweat a lot. They used to lose nutrients and minerals while sweating. That’s not the case today!

People do not sweat a lot because most of them work in a comforting environment. A small quantity of salt is enough to get vital nutrients and stay healthy. Newborn babies don’t need salt because they breastfeed exclusively. Complementary meal eating babies also don’t need extra salt. Their meals contain what their body needs after 6 months of age.

What is the right age to feed salt to a baby?

A newborn child can get all the required supply of sodium from breast milk. The WHO prohibits feeding external foods to infants before 6 months. So, there is no question about feeding salt to a newborn child.

Parents should avoid feeding salt to the child until the baby is 1 year old. Mixed feeding is enough to meet your child’s nutritional needs. Choose top-quality complementary foods for your baby to provide him with a nutrient-rich diet. You can add a pinch of salt to your child’s diet when he is 1-year old.

Too much salt can cause health issues!

Eating too much salt is neither good for you nor the child. The baby will simply refuse to eat external meals due to salt. Infants have quite sensitive taste buds. Even a small quantity of salt can cause discomfort to your baby.

Suppose you decide to add salt to the baby’s diet anyway, his kidneys will experience extra burden. Infants do not have a completely developed digestive system to process all the spices and salt. Adding such ingredients to the child’s diet can disrupt his growth and cause other health problems.

When You Should Add Salt to Your Baby’s Diet?

Parents try to provide a perfectly balanced diet to their children. Therefore, they do a lot of research before feeding anything to the baby. Salt not only improves food’s taste but also offers vital minerals.

Some people think that the child may not receive those salt-based nutrients if they don’t add salt to his diet. Therefore, they start blending some salt into the infant’s meals. Doctors never recommend it because it is harmful to the child’s health.   

Your baby’s complementary food should be free of salt

Some parents decide to make complementary food more delicious by adding a few pinches of salt. They decide the deliciousness of the food according to their taste. It is not good for the child’s health. Your infant is not familiar with different tastes of foods. He has only consumed milk for the last six months. He does not need salt because his body is not ready to process it!

Let the baby enjoy the natural taste of the food

You should not add spices or salt to the infant’s complementary food. Add these ingredients when the child is 1-year old. Some foods contain salt naturally. Extra salt can cause health issues and make the food taste bad.

You may not know it, but the infant got extra sensitive taste buds. Natural flavors of fruits and veggies are enough to keep the child entertained. Do not add extra ingredients to make it so daunting for the child to eat his food. Feed only 2 grams of salt every day when the child is 1 year old.

Why A Breastfeeding Baby Should Avoid Salt?

Salt should not be on your ingredient list if you are preparing meals for your 6-12 months old child. It can be harmful to your baby in the following ways:

It affects saliva secretion

Salty foods affect saliva secretion in your baby’s mouth. It also reduces the production of lysozyme, which is quite essential to prevent the growth of certain viruses and bacteria in the upper respiratory tract.

This type of food also eliminates the normal parasitic flora of your child’s upper respiratory tract. The baby can experience the flora imbalance and he may fall sick. Therefore, an infant should receive minerals only from fruits and veggies.

Excess salt prevents the reproduction of the oral mucosal epithelial cells

Feeding salty food can be dangerous for the child’s disease-fighting ability. This type of food prevents the growth of the oral mucosal epithelial cells, which causes diseases.

Zinc deficiency

Your baby will find it quite tough to absorb zinc from his foods if you breastfeed with salty meals. It can cause hair fall and lack of alertness in the child. Therefore, you should not start feeding salt to the baby without consulting with a doctor or nutritionist.

How to Feed Salt to Your Baby?

Follow the below-given tips to add salt to your baby’s daily diet:

Do not cook meal according to your taste

Foods and spices you find delicious can be quite harmful to your child’s health. Do not add salt to the baby’s food according to your taste. First of all, there should not be salt in your child’s diet if he is younger than 1 year. Infants are quite sensitive to salt. Therefore, you cannot add the same quantity of salt to the baby’s food as you mix in your food.

Use only iodized salt

You should add iodized salt to your baby’s complimentary meals once he is 1-year old. Do not blend more than one or two pinches of salt! It can cause health issues in your baby. Blend salt when cooking the recipe. Do not add extra salt after taking the recipe in a bowl.

Consult with a doctor if your child is suffering from a chronic disease

Excess salt intake can badly affect your child’s health if he is suffering from nephritis, heart disease, or respiratory infection. Meet the doctor and take his advice on how to feed iodized salt to the baby.

The doctor will not allow you to blend more than a few pinches of salt. Some health experts recommend salt when the recipe is ready to serve. Ad one or two pinches of salt and then feed it to the child. The baby will enjoy its taste and it won’t affect his health.

Slightly increase the salt intake in certain conditions

Babies can sweat in the summer season. They lose vital minerals with the sweat. You can slightly increase the salt quantity in such a situation. A baby can lose vital fluids and minerals when suffering from diarrhoea and vomiting. Provide proper supplement to meet the child’s salt and energy needs.  

Which Salty Foods Can Affect Your Child’s Health?

The following foods are quite salty and you should feed them in limited quantity:

Snacks

Dry fruits, junk food, and nuts contain a lot of salt. You should feed these foods in a controlled manner. Thus, you can prevent your child from consuming extra salt. Do not feed junk foods if your child is just 1-2 years old.  

Pickled foods

Pickle manufacturers marinate these foods for a long time. The food becomes quite saltier and acetic. Do not allow your child to eat a whole chunk of the pickle. A small amount of pickle is enough to provide something weirdly delicious.

Some babies like pickle and some simply throw them away. Serve it in a very small amount to see whether your child likes this new food or not.

Processed food

Canned foods allure all the young children. These foods are often salty and harmful to the child’s health. Therefore, parents should not allow the kid to consume too much-processed food.

Thick soup

You might love to add various sauces and ingredients when preparing a delicious soup at home. Do not serve the same soup to your baby. Follow a less salty recipe when preparing soups for your infant. Serve the regular soup in a small bowl to control your child’s salt intake.

Conclusion

Every food and every ingredient makes us healthier if we consume those foods in a controlled way. Excess intake of salt is harmful to both babies and adults. Therefore, you should follow the precautious shared in this post when flavoring a baby’s food with salt.


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