MommyHealthiest

Nourishing body, mind, & soul.

Spice Up That Baby!

on February 14, 2014

Spice it up baby!  Do not be afraid to use spices when it comes to your baby’s first foods.  If you were breastfeeding and eating spices, then your baby is already accustom to the flavors.  Introduction of spices will help expand a child’s palate, help them grow tolerant of spices, boost their immune system, and add healing properties to their foods.   Many countries throughout the world give babies spices in their first foods.  In India, they introduce cumin, coriander and turmeric first.  All three of these spices have Ayurvedic properties that benefit the baby.  Asia, Middle East, South America, all use a variety of spices even cayenne, chili peppers, and black pepper when introducing first foods to babies.

***Remember, when introducing first foods or spices to infants, do it ONE at a tim. Wait FOUR days before introducing another food, in case the baby has an allergy, intolerance or adverse reaction.  Some say not to introduce spices until eight months, I started at four months with Luna and she’s an amazing eater!  Luna eats green juices with raw ginger to roasted garlic to hot/spicy bean chips.  This was my decision and I encourage you to make your own choice and do what is comfortable of you.  I also advise you to do your own homework and not to go solely by your pediatricians word – they are not the baby god.

Here are some great spices to mix into your baby’s food:

Cardamom – It’s a super spice for gas, bloating and low digestive power. Good for colds, cough and asthma. Also helps digest milk.

Cinnamon – Boosts digestive enzyme function and helps energy to move. Combine it with ginger for colds, coughs, flu. Sprinkle in oatmeal, porridge, cereal.

Coriander – Balances the digestive enzyme function. A mild carminative (helps gas and bloating) and blood purifier. For cystitis and urinary infections use it in cooking, or make a juice from the leaves.

Cumin – Improves enzyme function (the power of digestion) in the digestive organs and liver. Use daily for malabsorption (when impaired digestion means you are not absorbing nutrients from food).  Great to add to black bean purées (6-8mos food.)

Garlic – Helps colds, flu, infections, yeast infections, parasites. Add a little roasted garlic to puréed green beans or peas.

Ginger -The main digestive spice. Also helps get rid of colds, coughs, flu. Use fresh ginger for gas, burping, headaches, cramps, arthritis. Chew a piece for indigestion, nausea or vomiting. Ginger tea helps clear toxins as well as colds.  Ginger tea for baby – boil water with a few slices of fresh ginger, add 1 ounce ginger tea to 4 ounce water – I add a pinch turmeric and cinnamon on the rare occasion Luna is sick.

Nutmeg – The best spice to use if poor digestion means nutrients aren’t being absorbed. Use ¼ tsp max. Use for gas, bloating, diarrhea, nerve pain, insomnia. Add to a milky drink at night to help restful sleep.  Add to puréed butternut squash or sweet potato.

Turmeric – Probably the best spice for helping remove toxins. Balances the intestinal flora, liver and pancreas, improves problem skin. Contains a phytochemical called cur cumin, which reduces inflammation and helps liver detoxification.  A stronger antioxidant than vitamin C.   Add a pinch to butternut squash, even oatmeal with pinch of cinnamon.

Vanilla – contains high levels of antioxidants that help reduce free radicals.  Add to cereals, oatmeals, porridges.

Black Pepper – is a powerful digestive stimulant.  It stimulates the plasma and the blood, the nervous system, the spleen, and reduces body fat. It is beneficial for chronic indigestion, toxins in the colon, sinus congestion, and can stimulate the circulation to help warm cold hands and feet.  add to anything.

Other spices you may use are rosemary , dill, oregano, lemon zest, mint, anise, and curry powders.

Bon appetite little baby!

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