Breast to food
•It is important to eat a nutritious diet when you are breastfeeding. You don't need any special foods but try and maintain a balanced diet with plenty of protein, iron and calcium as well as plenty of fluids and fresh fruit and vegetables.
•Keep your energy levels up and avoid fatigue. You should aim to have three good meals a day and healthy snacks in between.
•You should try to keep to the kind of balanced diet recommended to you when you were pregnant.
•There are no particular foods you need to avoid, unless a food you normally eat seems to upset your baby.
•Some drugs can come through into breast milk so if you need medication, remind your doctor that you are breastfeeding.
Sometimes you may want to consider other foods for your baby's diet. Here is a rough guide:
Your new born
Breast-feeding is the best for your baby.
See also our Starting Solids Pages which have Great Information!
From six months to one year
It's best to breast feed as long as you can - longer than 6 months if you can. For some mothers this isn't always practical, or possible.
•Your baby will be enthusiastic about eating solid food at this stage so now is a good time to start introducing them.
•You should have introduced solid foods by six months and no earlier than four months.
•Do not forget about milk, it is still important and breast milk is best.
•At this stage iron is an important nutrient. Full term babies are born with an iron supply in their livers to last for the first six months of their lives.
•You should not make the switch to plain cows milk until one year old.
From one year to two and a half
•By this stage your child can eat most things you do and eat at the same time, with snacks in-between.
•Avoid fatty fried foods - that could go for both child and yourself. It is simply unhealthy.
•Be weary of fast food, canned, frozen or pre-prepared as it may have unknown additives or high salt.
•They say that variety is the spice of life and they are not wrong. Think all foods are important in different ways and combinations, every day.
•If to you it seems that your child is not eating enough, if he/she is energetic and healthy then your child knows best.
From two and a half to five years old
•Try not to associate food with discipline and love, in other words food should not be a treat or taking food away should not be a punishment.
•Aim to have your child enthusiastic about food, do not force disliked foods.
•To teach table manners set an example, they will follow.
•Have faith in your child, trust them at the table and give him/her a proper place.
•Help your child to acquire new tastes.
•Your child should eat what you do, don't make special 'baby food' for him/her, it will only bring a boundary between you. Make your child part of the family.