Your baby is turning one and has met all her milestones – from learning to sit up and crawl, to mimicking your gestures and saying “Papa” and “Mama”. And you yourself are getting the hang of parenthood and enjoying every precious moment of this life-changing experience.
But whether your child is a newborn or entering the toddler stage, there will always be a constant yet evolving challenge of ensuring she gets sufficient quality nutrients to help her develop physically and mentally. This is when a balanced diet comes into the picture.
According to Mr Derrick Ong, principal dietitian and founder of Eat Right Nutrition Consultancy, the rule of thumb when it comes to ensuring your child has a good, balanced diet is to establish a carbohydrate-protein-fat ratio for babies and young children: think 40 per cent carbs, 20 per cent protein and 30 per cent fat.
Mr Ong adds that exposing your child to different food groups provides your child with the many nutrients and vitamins necessary in the formative years.
He advises “Eating is both a taste and visual thing, and even adults eat with our eyes. Present vegetables more attractively so they don’t look like green mush.”
To achieve this, experiment with different textures by mincing and pureeing food, or making animal-shaped patties using cutters.
But even doing all these may not tempt your child to try a little of everything. To make up for this, the right formula milk can help to provide the minerals, vitamins, probiotics and nutrients that your child might be missing out on.
Here are some tips on what else to look out for when shopping for formula milk.
1. Shop for formula milk with quality, optimised protein and no added sucrose
As childhood obesity is on the rise these days, Mr Ong cautions against giving your little one too much sugar. Instead, look for formula milk with quality proteins in the right amount as too much proteins can be hard for young kidneys to process.
2. Opt for milk oligosaccharides in formula milk
More than 200 types of milk oligosaccharides have been identified so far, the most abundant type being 2'-Fucosyllactose or 2’-FL.
Think of it as a natural guardian that encourages the growth of good bacteria in your child’s digestive tract, where 70 to 80 per cent of cells that support immunity are found. 2’-FL also stops the growth of bad bacteria, offering greater immune protection that is vital as your child grows and becomes exposed to different types of germs daily.
3. Your formula milk should feature probiotics
Probiotics are known to boost gut health and prevent issues like diarrhoea, constipation, flatulence and indigestion. They are also said to improve the immunity system, which is important for young children, especially those who are out a lot and mingle with other kids.
Probiotics are commonly found in foods like yogurt, cheese, kimchi and sourdough bread. However, most young children may not eat these, so a good way to introduce probiotics into their daily diet is through formula milk.
Introducing the NAN OPTIPRO range of toddler milk
NAN OPTIPRO Growing Up Milk is formulated with exclusive Optimized Proteins for children who are at least one year old. The formulation also provides BIFIDUS BL, a patented active strain of probiotic that helps to maintain a healthy digestive system.
The formulation also contains DHA and ARA for brain and eye development, and Immunity Guardians* with the highest level of 2’-FL^. Help strengthen your baby’s immunity by giving him a strong foundation for his growth. The bonus: NAN OPTIPRO 3 has no added sucrose, so it is healthier for a growing, active child.
Build the right foundation for your child’s growth and nourish them in every way possible.
Find out more about NAN OPTIPRO at www.nanoptipro3.com.sg.
*Immunity Guardians: Iron, Vitamin A, B12, C & Folic Acid contribute to normal function of the immune system.
^Compared to infant formula brands in Singapore, based on declared value per 100g.