Weaning is defined as the systematic process of introduction of suitable food to infants at the right time in addition to breast milk in order to provide needed nutrients to babies. Time of weaning :
Complementary foods can be introduced at 4-6 months of age. If weight gain is good and mother is not planning to go out for work, weaning can be delayed till completion of 6 months. It should never be delayed beyond 6 months and should not be started before 4 months. If mother is planning to join work or weight gain is not very much satisfactory, we can introduce complementary feeding after 4months. However breast feeding has to be continued for minimum 1 year and maximum upto 2 years. Types of weaning food :
Initially we should start with 1 type of cereals (i.e., ragi malt or rice ganji). Later we can use combination of 2 types of cereals and also cereal pulse combination. (i.e., rice with redgram or green gram). Along with cereals and pulse based food, we can give mashed banana, mashed potato, mashed sweet potato. We can add sugar, jiggery and ghee. What to be avoided :
Avoid animal milk, egg and salt till the age of 1 year. Use water instead of milk to prepare any food. Ragi Malt :
Soak ragi over 12 hours and dry it. Roast it for 10 minutes and prepare powder. Put this powder to boiling water and stir. Add sugar or jaggery and ghee and feed. Rice Payasam :
Soak rice over 12 hours and dry it. Roast it for 10 minutes and prepare powder. Put this powder in boiling water and stir. Add sugar or jaggery and ghee and feed. Dal Powder :
Wash red gram or green gram and dry immediately. Roast it and prepare powder. This powder can be added to ragi or rice powder in the ratio of 2:1. i.e., 2 parts ragi or rice powder and 1 part of red gram or green gram powder for preparing ragi malt and rice payasam. Amylase rich Food :
Ragi, wheat, bajra, jowar, green gram can be converted to amylase rich food.
1) Soak ragi (3 cups) and green gram (1 cup) in 12 cups of water for 12 hours.
2) Drain the water and wrap in a cloth. Keep in a cool place for 48 hours. Keep sprinkling water in between.
3) Dry germinated seeds in sunlight for 8 hours.
4) Rub with a flat wooden board or hand to remove the sprouts.
5) Roast the dried grain in low flame for 10 minutes till they are brittle and malt aroma develops.
6) Grind the roasted grain into fine powder and store it in air tight container.
This powder can be added to ragi malt/ rice payasam/rice dal gruel to reduce the viscosity. It is easily digestible due to the presence of amylase. Family Pot Feeding :
Once the baby is 1 year old, we can feed all food items cooked at home.