Introducing Flax Seed to Older Babies
With obesity becoming a greater health threat than stroke or cancer, moms should be concerned about good nutrition for their babies. Teaching your older baby nutritious eating habits sets a good foundation for healthy eating as an adult. Adding grains to your older baby’s diet also can provide added nutrients and help with digestion problems. One wholesome grain to consider adding to a baby’s diet is flax seed. Produced from a flowering perennial, this seed is a great source of Omega 3 and fiber.
Mothers should not introduce their little ones to flax before they reach 8 to 10 months old without a doctor’s recommendation. Whole flax may not be digested by babies’ delicate stomachs, so it may be better to use ground flax or flax oil. No more than about three teaspoons a day should be given. While flax has good health benefits and can ease constipation, too much flax seed can cause diarrhea and loose stools. This is because it is high in fiber.
Which type of flax is better for a baby and where can you buy it?
Though it is available, whole flax seed for babies isn’t recommended. Ground flax seed or flax oil is a better option for babies. Sprinkle finely ground flax seed or pour a teaspoon of flax oil into baby’s food for several meals and rotate the diet of flax offerings. This will help ensure the flax does not causing digestive problems. Keeping a food diary will also help to identify food allergies or sensitivities your child may have, though allergies to flax are rare. Finely ground flax and flax oil is available in grocery stores that have a health/organic product section or at a health food and nutrition stores. Though a pound of ground flax may be two to three times the cost of regular flour, it stores well in the refrigerator and helps keep babies healthy. Flax oil should also be kept in the refrigerator. Though it is an oil, flax does not make a good cooking ingredient. When heated, flax turns rancid. This is why moms should stick to adding ground flax or flax oil in foods without heating or cooking them.
Though some new mothers may know little about flax seed for babies, flax has been commercially produced in America since the 1700’s. Today, this nutritious food is best known for its health benefits as a source of fiber and Omega 3.