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Natural Probiotics For Children
Categories Everything

The Best Natural Probiotics For Children

Probiotics are living microorganisms that when ingested have beneficial effects, especially on our gut flora. the added benefit of including these in your child’s diet is that they are also good sources of vitamins, minerals and enzymes.

Probiotics are normally found in any fermented foods. Usually we need to add certain bacterial cultures to ferment these foods, and these bacterial cultures are beneficial. Remember that these bacteria are sensitive to heat. therefore if you heat any of the following foods, you will lose the probiotic effect of them.

Sources of natural probiotics:

  1. Yogurt: always try to make yogurt at home. The cultures that are used for setting yogurt commercially, generally are different and do not provide any probiotic benefits. You can add yogurt to your child’s smoothies, use as a dip, make popsicles, etc. Remember that frozen yogurt does not have any probiotic effect.

Other good probiotics made from dairy include sour cream, buttermilk, aged or mature cheese.

  1. Tempeh: made from fermented soybeans, it has gained a lot of popularity recently. Some people and children have difficulty in developing a taste for it, but you can make it flavoursome by doing the following: Steam the blocks after chopping it in chunks. You can then marinate them in your own special mix and grill them, or add them in pasta sauce, peas, pulao, casseroles, etc.
  2. Miso: wildly used in Japan in many dishes, it is now finding use in other parts of the world. Use it to add a umami flavour to your soups, curries, dips, etc.
  3. Kefir: it is a fermented drink made from milk. A combination of lactic acid bacteria and yeasts is used for making kefir. There are many flavoured kefir drinks that are now available, but as they contain added sugar, it is better to make it at home or stick to the plain variety. you can easily find the starter culture online to make it yourself at home.
  4. Sauerkraut, kimchi: made from cabbage and some other vegetables like carrots, cucumbers, etc, they can be used in many ways:
    • add to sandwiches, salads, etc.
    • the juice from this can be added to soups and salad dressings
    • add to fruit cups for added sourness and crunch

To know more or if you need further help get in touch with me, Kanupriya Khanna, one of the best Dietitian and Nutritionist in Delhi.

Nutritionist in Delhi
Categories Everything

7 Foods Toddlers Should Not Eat

According to the Oxford dictionary, a toddler is defined as a young child who is just beginning to walk. babies who are 12-36 months old fall in this category. As a guideline, children in this age usually should be given 3 meals, 2-3 snacks and adequate amounts of water.

There are certain foods that should not be given to toddlers too. In this blog we will look at 7 such foods:

  1. Foods high in salt

Too much sodium is harmful for babies’ kidneys. But it is important to remember that sodium is not just present in salt, but there are many hidden sources of unnecessary sodium that you should keep in mind. Some of them are:

  • bacon
  • chips
  • packaged meals
  • pickles and chutneys
  • crackers
  • baked goods
  • processed meats like sausages
  1. Frozen ready to eat foods

More often than not, frozen foods contain high amounts of sodium. So even though they are easy and convenient, remember that they are not healthy for your toddlers and should be avoided.

  1. Sugar

Sugar in a toddlers diet is completely unnecessary. It does not provide any nutrition and is a leading cause of tooth decay, obesity and other lifestyle disorders. You must also keep in mind hidden sources of sugar like:

  • readymade sauces and dressings
  • curry pastes
  • packaged foods
  • jams and preserves
  • baked goods
  • flavoured yogurts
  • juices
  1. Whole nuts and peanuts

Young children should not be given whole nuts and peanuts simply because they pose a choking hazard. You can give these in powder form, crushed or butter form from 6 months onwards. in case of any family history of an allergy from nuts and peanuts, please consult your physician or dietitian before introducing these.

  1. Raw or lightly cooked eggs

Well cooked eggs can be given to babies from 6 months onwards. make sure that both the white and the yolk are cooked enough so they become solid. Uncooked or runny eggs are the major cause of food borne illness due to Salmonella. Eggs are also a common allergy causing foods so introduce in small quantities and watch out for any allergy type symptom.

  1. Some types of cheeses

Cheese can be introduced at 6 months as they are a good source of protein, calcium and vitamins. But there are a few precautions you need to take:

  • the cheese should be pasteurised full fat cheese like mild cheddar, cottage cheese, cream cheese
  • soft cheeses that use a mould for ageing like brie, camembert, etc should be avoided
  • ripened goat’s milk chases and blue-veined cheeses that are not pasteurised should also be avoided as they may contain listeria, a type of pathogen. eg. Roquefort
  1. Raw shellfish, high mercury fish

Raw shellfish like oysters, clams, mussels, can cause food poisoning and so should be avoided. Fish like marlin, swordfish and shark can sometimes have high mercury content that can interfere with a baby’s nervous system development, thus should be avoided.

To know more or if you need further help get in touch with me, Kanupriya Khanna, one of the best Dietitian and Nutritionist in Delhi.

dietitian in delhi
Categories Dietician

Childhood Food Allergies: Review Of The Top 6 Food Allergens

A food allergy is a reaction to the body’s immune system in response to the ingestion of certain foods. The body’s immune system mistakenly recognises the proteins in these foods as harmful for the body. It then launches a series of reactions, or releases certain chemicals; these in turn can lead to various symptoms. A food intolerance does not involve the immune system and thus is never life threatening.

An allergic reaction can be caused even if one ingests very small amounts of the allergen containing food.  The severity of the symptoms depends on the type of allergy. The time taken for the allergic reaction to show up or be identifiable can also vary from a few seconds to a few days.

Some symptoms include:

  • diarrhoea
  • hives
  • vomitting
  • itchy or non-itchy rash
  • eczema
  • difficulty in breathing
  • swelling of the tongue, mouth or face
  • sudden drop in blood pressure
  • anaphylaxis

The top 6 most common food allergies in children include:

1). COW’S MILK PROTEIN ALLERGY (CMPA)

It affects almost 2-3% of babies and young children and is one of the most common food allergies. Fortunately studies show that most children will outgrow this type of food allergy as they grow older. If your child is diagnosed with CMPA, then you must avoid the following:

  • milk
  • yogurt
  • cheese
  • cottage cheese
  • butter
  • clarified butter or ghee
  • cream
  • any products made from these

If you are breast feeding mother, you will need to exclude the above from your diet as well until you continue to nurse your baby.

Now a days many formula milk are present that are safe for babies with CMPA. Check with our paediatrician or dietitian for the right formula for your baby.

2). SOY

Soy allergy is most common in children below the age of 3 years. it is most likely that 70% of children with soy allergy will outgrow it as they get older. If your child continues to be allergic to soy, it is important to avoid not juts the apparent foods of soy like, tofu, milk, tempeh, soybean, etc; but also foods like soy sauce, Thai curry paste, etc. Soy is added to many foods and therefore it is important that you read the labels of all packaged foods that you buy.

3). EGG

It is amongst the top three food allergies in children. But almost 65-70% of children will outgrow their egg allergy by the time they are 16 years old. What is interesting is that your child may not be allergic to both egg whites and yolk necessarily, and maybe allergic to either one out of the two. This is due to the fact that the type of proteins present in egg white and yolk are  different.

Avoiding eggs and foods that contain these is the easiest way to avoid an allergic reaction. But sometimes if you know the exact recipe of a food and it does not contain the allergy causing part of egg, then that food may be safe for your child to consume.

4). PEANUT

Even though peanut is called a nut, it is actually not a nut at all, but a legume. A peanut allergy is again very common and can cause a severe fatal allergic reaction. it is common to find that if a child has peanut allergy, he/she may also have other tree nuts allergies.

The current recommendation is that introducing peanuts early on to a child may be beneficial and provide protection against developing an allergy to it later on. This can be done by introducing it via the mother’s diet while breastfeeding.

Some children outgrow a peanut allergy while others do not.

5). SHELLFISH

Shellfish are a group of sea animals like:

  • shrimp
  • prawns
  • crayfish
  • lobster
  • crab
  • squid
  • scallops

Sometimes an allergy to shellfish can be so severe, that even if a child smells the vapours of the shellfish being cooked, it may set off a reaction. Thus, parents of such children are usually advised to always carry an Epinephrine injector pen.

6). TREE NUTS

Tree nuts are nuts that grow on trees. Examples include:

  • brazil nuts
  • walnuts
  • almonds
  • pine nuts
  • pistachios
  • cashew nuts
  • macadamia nut

Children with an allergy to any of these should avoid these, but also products made from these, like nut butters, oils, nut milks, nut powders, etc. It is quite possible that if your child has a tree nut allergy, it may remain for life and your child may not outgrow it.

At present, medicine does not have a cure for food allergies. Therefore it is important to be vigilant and take caution while eating out or buying packaged foods. Now a days there are very sophisticated tests available to check for various food allergies. Talk to your doctor or dietitian for recommendation.

KARAMELE is a brand that is based in New Delhi. They specialise in customising foods according to your food allergies and intolerances and are worth checking out.

I hope the above helps you. To know more or if you need further help get in touch with me, Kanupriya Khanna, one of the best Dietitian and Nutritionist in Delhi.

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