Avocados are not only finding more and more fans in vegan cuisine but these green nutrient bombs can also be put on the plate early on in children’s nutrition. Here you can find out why avocados are so healthy, When can babies eat Avocados? and how you can prepare them.
WHEN CAN BABIES EAT AVOCADOS?
Avocado can be offered once your baby is ready for solids. This is the case for most infants from about 6 months – in any case, the complementary food maturity signs should be met. The WHO (World Health Organization) recommends mothers’ milk exclusively for the first 6 months and then starting complementary feeding. Some institutions also recommend starting between the 5th and 7th month, i.e. possibly a little earlier. Ripe avocados are soft and packed with nutrients, making them a wonderful food for beginning eaters.
IS AVOCADO HEALTHY FOR BABIES?
Avocado is a popular first food for babies, and rightly so. The fruit is easy to prepare and high in fiber and healthy monounsaturated fats, which babies need to support digestion and brain development. Avocados are also a rich source of growth-promoting B vitamins like folic acid and B6 and contain vitamin E, as well as zinc and potassium, important for a healthy immune system. The healthy fats in avocado also make avocado oil a suitable complementary food oil. But probably more occasionally, because this product is very expensive.
HOW DO I KNOW THAT THE AVOCADO IS RIPE?
There are different varieties of avocados, which mainly differ in size, color, and texture of the skin. It doesn’t matter which one you choose, they are all healthy for your baby. What is more important when buying is that the avocados do not have any bruises and are not yet mushy and too soft. You can sometimes check how fresh avocado is by lifting the base of the stem and noting the color underneath. If it’s nice and light green, the avocado is probably still fresh.
You should let very hard avocados ripen at home for a while until they start to soften a bit. Unfortunately, very hard avocados do not taste good. You can speed up the ripening process if you store them next to an apple or banana.
Over time you will develop a feeling for which fruit is still good and which is not. Nevertheless, it happens again and again that you open the avocado too late and it already has very brown spots on the inside. If it is only a matter of individual areas, you can generously cut them out. Unfortunately, if the whole avocado is streaked with brown fibers, you have to throw it away.
The situation is different with avocados that have already been cut. It is normal for the surface to quickly turn from a gorgeous green to a dark brown when exposed to air. The cause is oxidation with oxygen. You can prevent this process by sprinkling them with some lemon or lime juice.
ARE AVOCADOS A CHOKING HAZARD FOR BABIES?
No, when avocados are ripe, there is no increased risk of choking, although theoretically, a human can choke on any food. As always, make sure to create a safe eating environment with your baby sitting upright, not distracted, and with a footboard under their feet. Also, never let your baby out of your sight while eating.
IS AVOCADO A COMMON ALLERGEN?
Allergies to avocados are very rare, but theoretically possible. An avocado allergy is more likely if your child is already allergic to bananas, chestnuts, kiwis, latex, or pollen. Typical symptoms are temporary itching or burning in the mouth. A dangerous allergic reaction is unlikely.
HOW OFTEN CAN MY BABY EAT AVOCADOS?
Your child can eat avocado as often as they want. Avocados aren’t known for causing sore butts, and you don’t risk constipation or stomach pain from too many avocados for a baby. But even if your baby loves avocados, you should make sure that there is variety. Because the more versatile and varied your child eats, in the first months and years of life, the better. In the first 2-3 years, a person’s taste preferences for life are shaped. And the more diverse the later diet in adulthood, the better your child will be supplied with nutrients.
Also, keep in mind that avocados are imported goods and are associated with high CO2 emissions from transport and high-water consumption in the country where they are grown. For the sake of the environment in which your child is supposed to live, avocados should not be on the menu every day.
PREPARING AVOCADO FOR BABIES WITH YARDIE BABY
You don’t have to cook the avocado, it can be spooned or cut raw straight out of the shell. Of course, you can mix avocados into baby food or try different recipes with avocados. However, the easiest and most interesting way to start with the green fruit is simply in one piece.
6 to 9 months: For first-time eaters, you can offer a whole halved avocado without the skin or large, thick stalks of ripe avocado. You can also mash up some avocado and put it on a spoon if your baby can already eat from the spoon. Because mashed avocado is very sticky, it doesn’t fall off the spoon easily, and your child may feel a sense of accomplishment.
Because ripe avocados can be very slippery, they may “shoot” out of your baby’s hand. Then it can help to roll the avocado in some dry food that gives it some grip. Ground nuts, sesame seeds, chia seeds, or hemp seeds, for example.
9 to 12 months: At this age, the pincer or pincer grip develops, allowing babies to pick up smaller objects and pieces of food. Now the avocado pieces can also be smaller – but of course, that’s not a must.
From 12 months: By now your child is probably slowly starting to eat with cutlery. However, it sometimes takes children until their second birthday or longer until they are good at it. In any case, half an avocado in the bowl with a spoon seems like a perfect opportunity to practice spooning once your baby has fun with it.