Nutrition for Infants: Things new moms must know

Gytree Team
Updated On
New Update
Nutrition for Infants: Things new moms must know

Infancy is a period of rapid growth. During the 1st year of life, the infant grows and develops far more rapidly than at any other time of life. The growth and development is accompanied by a number of important physiological changes like change in body size, change in body composition, change in gastrointestinal system and mental development. For all these physiological changes, starting with good nutrition for infants is very important.

And for all the new moms, the struggle and challenge is real to know how they can support their infants in terms of their nutritional requirements- what to feed them, which food to introduce when, what are the right food options as growth during infancy is very rapid, dietary adaptation is required. 

During early infancy, much of the nutritional requirements are met by breast milk, but after 4 to 5 months, a part of the nutritional needs have to be met by some other supplements.

Supplementary food for Infants 


Supplementary foods are the different types and forms of food that an infant is given and introduced to while he/she is breastfeeding or when completely off the breast feeding during the weaning period.

Nutrition for Infants: Things new moms must know

Types of Supplementary Foods

  1. Liquid Supplements 

Milk:- At about 6 months of life don’t completely stop giving the breast milk, instead start substituting it with animal milk. Here cow milk should be preferred. Before feeding it to the baby it should be diluted with boiled and cooled water , gradually reducing the amount of water so that in few weeks the baby receives undiluted animal milk.

Juices:- Orange juice, grape juice, carrot juice, apple juice, watermelon juice should be served after 5 months of life to provide vitamins and minerals which cannot be met through breast milk. In early stages juices also need to be diluted with water.


Vegetable soups:- Soups can be introduced after 6 months of life. Strained vegetable soups can be given in the beginning  with unstrained can be introduced later on.

Pulses:- Include soup of different types of pulses after 6 months in your infant diet. Once in a day is ideal to give pulses soup to your infant.

  1. Mashed food or supplements 

After your infant has accepted the liquid supplements, its time to start introducing the mashed supplements or the ideal period is after 7 to 8 months.

Vegetables:- Mashed carrot, mashed potato, beetroot, sweet potato can be given to your infant. Make sure to completely cook them first so that it won’t irritate your infant digestion. 

Fruits:- Mashed papaya, muskmelon, chikoo, apple can be given. Introduce one fruit at a time and give your infant time to develop taste for different food groups.


Cereals:- Make sure to completely mash the cereals and mix them with milk and a little sugar like dalia with milk, ragi malt, rice with milk, custard etc. 

Eggs:- Start introducing boiled and mashed egg in very less amount  and if the infant can tolerate it you can slowly increase the quantity.

  1. Unmashed Solid food or supplement

By one year of age, infants start chewing the food and it's time to introduce them with soft yet solid food.

Raw vegetables and fruits  - Raw carrot, cucumber, radish, tomato without seeds can be given. Fruits like apple, orange, papaya, pomegranate should be given in raw form rather than juices.

Cereals and pulses :- Cereals like cooked oats with milk, rice, idli, appe, soft chapatis, porridge, boiled pulses, chillas can be given to the infant. But make sure to not  overfeed them.

It’s important to introduce your infant with supplementary food at the right time in the right manner. Infants can be very moody or not easily accept the foods but try to feed them through different ways and manner so that they slowly start accepting the food along with milk.

Postpartum Nutrition