It's safest to wait until around six months before giving your baby any solid food, because younger babies may not be able to sit up and swallow well. But before you go slapping some spaghetti on your child’s tray, you need to make sure your child is ready to consume pasta. You might want to talk to your GP or health visitor for advice before weaning your baby. Pasta that is made from wheat will contain gluten, which is one of the main food proteins that can trigger an allergic reaction. From six months old, you can serve plain, cooked, soft pasta to your baby as finger food that they'll be able to pick up and eat themselves. You can use rice-based or gluten-free pasta if your baby does show allergic symptoms. Check out our articles below, or swap tips and meal ideas with other parents in our forum. Simply cook the pasta in boiling water for 10-12 minutes until it's nice and soft for your baby to eat, then let it cool before serving to your baby. Most babies are ready for finger foods between eight and ten months of age. Meanwhile, refined pasta is higher in calories and B vitamins. Gluten is a dietary protein found in three types of cereal: wheat, barley and rye. If you have a family history of wheat allergy or gluten intolerance, watch for signs of an allergic reaction after introducing your baby to pasta for the first time. Indicators that a baby is ready for this milestone include loss of the "extrusion reflex" that causes a younger baby to push anything non-liquid out of her mouth, being able to sit upright unassisted and showing interest in food. [Know a friend who would love this article? People with a close relative with coeliac disease (parent or sibling) are more likely to develop the condition, so if this is the case speak to your GP before weaning your baby. Either way, offering finger foods is important for several reasons. That way, if your baby does have a reaction, you'll know what caused it. Plus, ensuring they get used to a range of flavours and textures can also help to stop them becoming fussy eaters when they get older. According to the NHS, it's fine to give your baby some types of pasta from around six months old. Remember that babies don't need any salt adding to their diets, so avoid adding any salt to their cooking water. In terms of portion sizes, around 15 grams is ideal for a six-month-old (dried weight). Wholegrain pasta, and other starchy foods, are known for being high in fibre and nutrients, and are often recommended to adults as a result. If your baby has trouble breathing, or loses consciousness, call 999 for an ambulance straight away and tell them that you think it could be anaphylaxis. So when it comes to starchy foods like pasta, bread and rice, try not to always give wholegrain variations. An intolerance is different to an allergic reaction, but it can cause your baby or child discomfort. If you have concerns about allergies or any symptoms, talk to your baby's pediatrician. This article contains affiliate links, which means we may earn a small amount of money if a reader clicks through and makes a purchase. These family pasta recipes are suitable for babies to eat or share: Unsure what food and drink your baby can have and when? For spoon-feeding, smaller types of pasta like pastina, alphabet pasta or macaroni are ideal. However, while fibre is an important part of a healthy, balanced diet, foods that contain a lot of fibre (like wholegrain pasta, breads and brown rice) can fill up your baby's small tummy and leave little room for other foods, according to NHS advice. It helps a baby develop hand-eye coordination; teaches her to explore the tastes, textures and colors of various foods; and helps train her to stop eating when full. Copyright © 2017 Working Mother. 7 things a nutritionist wishes parents knew about weaning, Avoid these common choking hazards for babies and children. As well as having an allergy, it's also possible to be gluten intolerant or to have coeliac disease, which is an autoimmune condition rather than an allergy. Avoid giving your baby store-bought pasta sauces or highly-processed pasta dishes. HealthyChildren.org: Starting Solid Foods, American Academy of Pediatrics: Infant Food and Feeding, Parents: The Do's and Don'ts of Baby-Led Weaning. When you first start introducing new food and drink to your child, it's a good idea to give them any that can cause an allergy in small amounts and one at a time, with several days between them. Once he or she has mastered this, you can start giving pasta to your child. It's safest to wait until around six months before giving your baby any solid food, because younger babies may not be able to sit up and swallow well. protein (to help the body grow and repair), vitamin B1 (thiamin - for breaking down and releasing energy from foods), folate (for healthy red blood cells and avoiding anaemia), vitamin B3 (niacin - for releasing energy from foods and healthy skin and nervous system), vitamin B2 (riboflavin - for healthy skin, eyes and nervous system), iron (for combatting anaemia and low energy), foods that contain gluten, including wheat, barley and rye, nuts and peanuts (serve them crushed or ground), shellfish (don't serve raw or lightly cooked). How many presents do you buy for your children? At six months, babies should start eating a variety of foods, including starchy foods like pasta, baby rice, potato and some types of bread. Most parents start with a smooth, wet food such as rice cereal or pureed fruits and vegetables and gradually offer baby foods that are more chunky and lumpy. All our articles and reviews are written independently by the Netmums editorial team. Diced chicken or ham, ground beef and tuna flakes all blend nicely into a sauce, resulting in a pasta dish with a texture most babies can handle.

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