One of the most frequently asked questions about Dasha is, how and what does she eat? Now that Dasha is already 2, and I finished breastfeeding her 3 months ago. People are curious if we have prepared a baby nutrition plan for her.
To begin with, I would rather call the food plan a set of nutrition principles instead of a strict nutrition plan. Let’s briefly talk about the 10 nutrition principles we are trying to adopt for a healthy child.
I really want our daughter to have a conscious attitude to food (and not like me in the first 20 years of my life). My husband and I never force anything into her, we don’t entertain her with games to put a spoon in her open mouth. If she doesn’t want to eat, we never force her. Like adults, she has a choice – if I cooked soup for lunch, but Dasha wants something else, I don’t force her – I quickly come up with some alternative, and leave the soup for dinner.
2. Vegetables & fruits in every meal
From the first feeding, I violated the recommendations of classic pediatricians and gave Dasha all kinds of berries, fruits, and vegetables. Tomatoes are the only thing to which my daughter sometimes had a reaction in the form of redness around her mouth, so we reduced their number (but there is no ban on them).
I try to have fresh fruits or vegetables in every meal. In the morning, as a rule, Dasha eats a portion of berries and other seasonal fruits 15 minutes before porridge. The second portion of fruit can be for lunch, an afternoon snack, or a snack before bed.
Vegetables are always included in lunch and dinner. This can be vegetable soup, zucchini baked until soft, sweet potatoes or peppers, boiled broccoli or cauliflower, grated boiled beets, fresh cucumber without the skin, grated raw carrots. It is enough to add butter, olive oil, coconut oil or sour cream, and a little Himalayan salt to vegetables.
3. Food without iPad and TV
We never eat while watching cartoons and in general with the TV or computer around. Cartoons for children work like hypnosis – when they are into a screen, they don’t even realize if they have eaten enough, or have eaten at all.
Although I am myself far from being disciplined. I often catch myself sneaking into email while putting something in my mouth. But as a rule of thumb, when we eat with Dasha, there is no TV, Phone, or computer.
4. Diversity of food
Here I am far from perfect, but I try to change cereals, fruits, berries, vegetables, dried fruits and nuts in her diet every day. I change protein sources – lentils, chickpeas, scrambled eggs, quail eggs, cottage cheese and goat’s milk cheese, casserole ( recipe here ), nut milk, and balls of nuts and dates.
We give our daughter fish two or three times a week. If we eat millet for breakfast on Monday, there will be buckwheat on Tuesday, quinoa on Wednesday, oatmeal on Thursday, rice on Friday, and cornmeal pancakes on Saturday ( according to this recipe).
If on Monday there was lentil broccoli soup for lunch, on Tuesday there would be fish and vegetables, on Wednesday – beetroot with egg, on Thursday – casserole with date syrup and berries, on Friday – spelled pasta with goat cheese, on Saturday – cutlets from chickpeas, and on Sunday – an omelet with green beans or have lunch at a restaurant.
5.Tastes and appetite change
Today the daughter can eat with great appetite, and the next day she throws the avocado out of the plate. I try not to pay attention to the ahi of grandmothers and calmly take changes in appetite.
6. We encourage self-reliance
From the first feeding, the daughter almost always eats herself. We help in difficult situations with liquid soup or curd. For the rest, albeit not always neatly, Dasha eats herself – with a fork, spoon or hands.
7. Delicious water
Dasha drinks much better if we give her not just water, but water with berries. I take 500 ml of water and two handfuls of frozen sea buckthorn, strawberries, currants or other berries. I mix in a blender and filter through a sieve. It turns out delicious water with the addition of berries, which my daughter drinks with pleasure throughout the day.
8. Baby food = healthy adult food
I do not cook specially for her. We drink green juices, and my daughter adores them! a smoothie and she sometimes drinks the largest portion. If I take green juice in 365 detoxes, I always take a second bottle for Dasha – she especially loves juice with kale and pineapple and a shot with wheatgrass.
Sometimes she enjoys drinking juice with an “adult” portion of ginger. In 90% of the cases, she eats and drinks the same as my husband and I. We do not have refined sugar, refined butter, cookies, or refined flour bread at home, and we do not have semi-finished products.
9. No prohibitions
When on dinner with friends or relatives, Dasha sometimes wants to try a dessert or cutlet, which we usually do not give her. I always allow and do not consider this a problem. When she is in the class or in the playground, she is sometimes treated with ordinary store-bought cookies, I don’t interfere there either – Dasha eats half of the cookies and forgets about it.
10. A healthy child is a cheerful, vigorous, and developed child
It seems to me that no matter what you feed your child, grandmothers will always worry that grandchildren are not eating well. I try to calmly accept such manifestations of their love. It is important for me that the child is cheerful, cheerful, he has strong immunity, and his menu is as diverse as possible from my point of view, and not from the point of view of grandmothers.