Understanding your child's gut microbiome is also essential as the balance between good and beneficial bacteria is much needed to boost immunity.
Your child's mood and behavior have to do with gut health too. So, a special focus must be devoted to what foods should the baby consume to boost gut health.
Gut health microbes are also important to understand chronic health illnesses and treat them effectively.
Foods that are high in sugar and fat are not what you should be giving to your baby as they will cause trouble in the digestive tracts and adversely impact the immune system. Alternatively, to help healthy bacteria thrive in the baby's gut, you may want to eye towards healthy, wholesome foods that alleviate digestion and advance healthy growth.
You may be concerned about how to improve baby gut health. Well, don't worry. To help you include the best foods to advance baby gut health, this guide will help through the range of top 10 foods that are excellent for your baby’s gut health.
It also touches on the necessary precautions you need to take to support the balance between bad and healthy gut bacteria, making it a how-to guide.
10 Foods That Are Excellent for Your Baby's Gut Health
1. Consider Breastfeeding
Even though you may choose to help your baby adapt to formula milk, there's no substitute for breast milk.
You may want to breastfeed your baby at least for the first six months as it enhances your baby's immunity significantly. In addition, breast milk contains essential nutrients that will fulfill the baby's changing needs with growing age.
Moreover, breast milk is also recognized as a highly rich source for both probiotics and prebiotics, making it an essential food to enhance your baby's microbial balance in the gut and improving overall gut health. Therefore, breast milk is highly beneficial for the baby's gut health.
2. Try Lean Meats For Your Baby
Lean meats are a rich source of essential nutrients for the body. Lean meats are also excellent to improve digestion and a great source of energy for the body.
You can consider including these in your baby's diet to advance gut health. The chicken could be an ideal choice as lean meat.
You can try mixing small chunks of boiled chicken with rice and feed it to your baby. Consuming lean meats regularly is essential for a baby's healthy growth and weight maintenance.
Therefore, to enhance your baby's gut health, don't forget to include lean meats like chicken in their diet.
On the other hand, you can consider other options for feeding meat if your baby is small. With a baby six months old, you may want to consider foods that are high in iron as the iron that your baby got during the gestation period starts to deplete during this time.
Red meats are an excellent source of iron. However, to support gut health, you may want to consider preparing meat purees.
3. Feed Foods With High Ingestible Fiber Content
Foods with high fiber content and those that don't digest easily are consumed by microbes in the gut.
Healthy bacteria in the gut develop a more healthy balance when it is exposed to carbohydrates provided by foods high with ingestible fiber content such as oatmeal, beans, garlic, onion, and others. So, to speed up digestion and improve the baby's gut health, include foods with indigestible fiber content.
In addition to the above foods, polyphenols could also be an excellent choice to enhance your baby's gut health.
Polyphenols are natural plant compounds that improve the balance of gut microbes and enhance gut health.
Among many experts, polyphenols are seen as a source of nurturing good bacteria in the baby's gut. Foods that contain high amounts of polyphenols are berries, cherries, dark chocolates, and grapes.
4. Include Probiotics In Your Baby's Diet
Probiotics are an excellent food to restore your baby's gut health. You may want to feed your baby food like yogurt, milk, and other items that are high in probiotics and have live bacteria, which is essentially healthy for the gut. You may also want to try probiotics supplements if you're unable to find probiotics foods or if they don't function as you expected them to.
You can try the Enterogermina, which is the top-recommended probiotics supplement by pediatricians and experts. Enterogermina could be an excellent choice to enhance your baby's gut health to an optimal level.
5. Ensure The Baby Stays Hydrated
While taking note of the baby's gut health, it is essential for you to ensure that your baby stays hydrated. Any negligence on keeping the baby hydrated will poorly affect the gut health and child's behavior, causing discomfort in the belly.
To alleviate health digestion, it is essential to be well-informed of the idea that an ideal balance between fluids and foods has to be maintained.
If your baby is small, you may want to nurse your baby more often. Breastfeeding your baby more frequently can help them stay hydrated throughout the day.
On the other hand, with older babies, you can try a variety of healthy fluids. Lookout for watery foods such as cucumber, and watermelons.
Watermelons have more than 70% water content to keep your baby hydrated and enhance gut health.
You can also try to include fruit juices as they are ideal for enhancing the gut microbial balance of the baby.
You should also know that a healthy intake of drinking water is essential for maintaining body weight. So, if you're finding difficulty with treating your baby's gut health, make sure they are sufficiently hydrated. Focus on fluids.
Avocados not only taste delicious but they're also a great source of healthy unsaturated fats that help boost brain development. Simply mash half an avocado with a fork, or you can also make flavorful guacamole for an added punch of flavor.
7. Yogurt-Based Foods
Yogurt is a natural probiotic. The best bit? You can use it in a variety of different ways to make gut-friendly food for your kid. Mix it with your baby's favorite fruit to prepare a delicious cup of fruit yogurt or blend with fruits to make a rich and creamy smoothie.
Rich in potassium and vitamin B6, bananas are a natural gut healer. This superfood can be used in a variety of different foods to boost the immunity of your little one.
Berries are bursting with flavor and lots of minerals and other nutrients that can help build immunity in your child.
Lentils are another superfood that contains proteins and fiber in large amounts. You can use legumes and beans in soups and gravies. Just add a pinch of salt and pepper, and you're good to go.
Tips to Consider
Plan Small And Frequent Meals
The idea of planning small and frequent meals for your baby is not only beneficial but essential too. Your baby has a very small belly and cannot hold a lot of food.
So, when you're planning to give your little one small meals 4-5 times in a day, you're allowing the belly to digest food easily.
Moreover, it also helps in allowing the gut to practice more with healthy digestion. Also, with small and frequent meals throughout the day, your baby won't feel full and will have enough energy to keep going throughout the day with joy!
Frequent meals with small quantities are not only beneficial for a baby's gut health but will keep your baby in a good mood.
Involve Your Baby Into Little Physical Activity
As adults, we remedy our digestive tracts by walking for half an hour after dinner. It helps to keep the waste moving and alleviate digestion.
Similarly, your baby's gut health could be advanced too by providing them a little physical activity. Since babies usually have a sluggish digestive system, along with planning small and frequent meals and providing enough fluids to keep them hydrated, you may want to involve your little one in little physical activity.
Speed up your baby's digestive system by getting around them and be a little playful. You can try playing with a ball. Throw the ball away and encourage your baby to bring it back.
This little to mild physical activity will enhance the baby's gut health. In addition, your baby will also be delighted. So, encourage a little physical activity to speed up digestion and enhance your baby's gut health.
Say 'No' To all Fatty And Junk Foods!
Junk foods including sugary drinks, snacks, chocolates, and candies are not what you should be considering to feed your baby to improve gut health.
When it comes to how to improve the gut health of your baby, along with including all healthy food items in their diet, you may want to eliminate the intake of junk foods.
Junk foods may be tempting for your baby and may leave them excited when placed in front of them. However, they are extremely unhealthy for digestion.
In addition, putting your baby on junk foods is not advisable at all. Babies need to have good gut health and you simply can't compromise on it.
Sugary foods and drinks that have a high-fat content will negatively affect the digestive system, cause discomfort in the stomach, and disturb the balance of gut microbial bacteria, putting your baby at serious risk of catching an illness. So, say 'no' to all fatty foods and junk foods to help your baby build a strong immune system.
Be Brave And Help Build Natural Immunity
There's no particular guide on improving your baby's gut health by simply including healthy foods and preventing the in-take of fatty or junk foods.
There has to be little to mild physical activity to alleviate digestion. Kids today need more antibiotics than earlier generations. Reason? They are not exposed to the natural environment to come in contact with healthy bacteria.
Therefore, you ought to be braver if you want to enhance your baby's gut health. Remember, it is essential that you allow the strengthening of the immune system naturally.
Exposure to germs is not problematic at all. In fact, it is healthy as it challenges the immune system and tests its potential to fight unhealthy bacteria.
Allow your kid to play in the garden with pets. Even though you're advised to be cautious of the baby's basic hygiene, you need not overdo with sanitization. These are the common mistakes that new parents make and become extra protective but sometimes it can be harmful too.
It is essential that the baby has a healthy habit of playing in the outdoors. Strengthening natural immunity does not equate with medicines at all. In fact, it supersedes medicines. So, it is important to be brave and expose your baby to the outdoors and help build natural immunity.
Don't Rely Excessively On Antibiotics
As a parent, you may want to be very careful while giving your baby an in-take of antibiotics. Antibiotics today are commonly seen as a simple remedy for everything.
Remember, you have to be cautious because they're not. Most people use antibiotics in case of watery stools and stomach discomfort. However, you don't need to treat your baby with such strong medicines without the prescription of your family pediatrician.
You may want to consider the side effects of consuming antibiotics. Babies may develop rashes, unwanted reactions, and stomach discomfort in response to medicines.
Instead of improving gut health, you may end up worsening the case for the baby. So, it's very important to be careful! Antibiotics are recommended to use for babies in severe cases of bacterial infection only. They are never your go-to option not particularly for treating watery stools. Therefore, do not rely excessively on antibiotics.
In conclusion, to help your baby develop good gut health, including a range of healthy foods that influence the gut microbiome of the baby in a healthy way. Avoid including sugary and junk foods and encourage little to mild physical activity to develop healthy digestion habits.