Remember when you were pregnant and they said no more soft cheese, no more processed meats, avoid seafood and pre-packaged salads. Well starting solids is a very similar mine field. You might find out early on through breastfeeding if you child has any major intolerance’s Otherwise it’s a game of Russian roulette! No it’s not that bad.
However our little babies have immature digestive systems and their little organs may not be able to cope with an abundance of certain minerals a particular food may provide. ‘Which Foods When’ is a great chapter from Dr Jennifer Barham-Floreani’s book ‘Well Adjusted Babies’. You can buy the chapter as an eBook from her site. I find it extremely informative and it has great tables that can be printed and stuck on the fridge. From all the various research I’ve done, most professionals in this field tend to recommended trialing new foods on their own and over a period of 3 days to monitor any reactions.
If you’re like me and ask Dr Google everything – “Can my baby have smoked salmon?”. You will find an absolute wealth of information,. So far I’ve found the internet the most helpful tool and the iPad the second on this whole parenting journey. The best thing is we have access to this information at our finger tips, it is always evolving and improving as more and more research is conducted. Just ask your mum when you ate eggs and had cow’s milk as a baby.
Below are some substitutes for common allergens. I’ve used all three and they have worked perfectly fine.
As a binding agent (Hold it together):
1 banana for 1 egg
1/4 cup apple sauce for one egg
1 tablespoon of ground flax seeds mixed with 2 to 3 tablespoons of hot water – allow thickening and cooling then use.
As a Leavening agent (Help it rise):
1-1/2 tablespoons vegetable oil mixed with 1-1/2 tablespoons water and 1 teaspoon baking powder per egg.
Wheat-free (and gluten-free) flours:
Rice flour is the easiest and cheapest flour to use as it is found is almost every supermarket. You generally substitute cup for cup in recipes. Other flours include; tapioca starch, potato starch and potato flour.
All-purpose flour mix
4-1/2 cups White Rice Flour
1-1/2 cups Potato Starch (not potato flour)
3/4 cup Tapioca Flour (also called tapioca starch)
Cow’s Milk protein:
Dr Jennifer Barham-Floreani (B.App.Clin.Sci, Chiropractic) talks extensively about pasteurised milk’s allergic nature and its effects on infants when introduced too early. Her recommendation is to slowly introduce products with the protein between 12 – 18 months of age. She starts with Organic goat’s milk, moves into cheeses and yoghurts and then organic cow’s milk. I would highly recommend purchasing the e-book ‘Which Foods When’ from her website for $7.95 (This is an excerpt from her book ‘Well Adjusted Babies’)
Soy, rice, potato, almond, oat and coconut milks are all possible substitutes for cow’s milk. These are all readily available in supermarkets especially organic varieties. If you aren’t dealing with a soy allergy, soy milk is a good option because it has similar amounts of nutrients to cow’s milk.
Dr Jennifer Barham-Floreani (B.App.Clin.Sci, Chiropractic), Well Adjusted Babies: Your complete guide to pregnancy, birth, babies and beyond, Which Foods When, Chapter 22: Page 523-565.