Gain weight food for babies
15 Foods to Make Baby Gain Weight – Cafe Baby®
- by Jeannie Marrugo
- Mar 10, 2022
If you need to add foods to Baby’s diet to help them in gaining weight, be sure to add these to your grocery list or to your next Café Baby order. Sometimes every extra calorie counts in their tiny bellies.
If your child needs to be on high calorie fortified infant formula or breast milk, please talk to your pediatrician first. You need to know the right recipe to prevent an excess intake of nutrients to prevent constipation and dehydration.
Avocados are a sugar-free healthy choice that contributes 2.5 grams of monounsaturated fat and 0.5 gram of polyunsaturated fat per 25-gram serving to Baby's diet.
2. Kidney Beans
Kidney beans are a plant-based protein, or non-heme iron source, rich in most B-vitamins, fiber and omega-3 fatty acids. They also contain two that are commonly deficient in babies: folate and iron.
Not only are eggs a prime source of the best-quality proteins after breast milk, but one egg contains thirteen essential minerals like copper, zinc, selenium, calcium, iron, cholesterol, fat, fatty acids, and vitamins like vitamin D, B12, E, choline and folate.
Bananas are loaded with nutrients like potassium, calcium, magnesium, iron, folate, niacin, and vitamin B6 and can help babies gain weight by increasing calorie density.
Mangoes are rich in fibres and digestive enzymes, which means Baby won't have any trouble going number two. Mangoes are very low in fat but contain lots of good calories which can help Baby gain weight.
Lentils are low in sodium and saturated fat, and high in potassium, fiber, folate, and plant chemicals called polyphenols that have antioxidant activity.
7. Ground Meat
Did you know it's important to add iron- and zinc-rich foods to Baby's diet? At about six months of age, Baby starts to run out of their natural iron stores that they were born with. Ground meats are an important source of heme iron, which is more easily absorbed into the body than non-heme iron (plant-based protein).
8. Whole Milk Yogurt
The best option is plain, unsweetened, pasteurized yogurt (regular or Greek) made from whole milk and containing "live cultures. " Yogurt made from whole milk is best for Baby because they need the calories and fat in full-fat dairy products.
9. Full-fat Cottage Cheese
Cottage cheese has plenty of healthy fats and protein, plus some B vitamins, calcium, selenium, and zinc. To avoid loads of salt, look for options that are:
- Low in sodium (ideally less than 100mg sodium per serving)
- Made from whole milk
- Without added preservatives or sugars
10. Mashed Sweet Potato
Sweet potatoes provide nothing but good calories, making it a healthy food option for Baby. The high amount of calories in sweet potatoes help in weight gain and physical development in children.
11. Mashed Potatoes
Potatoes might be mostly white, but that doesn’t mean they don't contain nutrients. They are are a source of fiber-rich carbs, which are one of the best sources of fuel for Baby’s brain.
12. Mashed Butternut Squash
The Omega-3 fats that are found in butternut squash are present in the form of alpha-linolenic acid, and this is what helps to reduce inflammation.
13. Peanut or Almond Butters
Nut butters can be a source of fibre, protein and healthy fats, as well as minerals such as magnesium, calcium, iron and vitamin E. If you're worried about food allergies, check out our blog series about starting solids and allergies.
14. Fresh Goat Cheese
Fresh goat cheese has lots of protein and healthy fats, plus calcium, copper, iron, and vitamins A, B2, and B6—essential nutrients to power your baby’s growth. When selecting goat cheese for Baby, look for a cheese that is:
- Low sodium (less than 100mg per serving)
- Whole fat
15. Cooked Quinoa
Quinoa is a good source of calcium, iron, potassium and magnesium. It's also a great source of Omega 3, 6, 9 fatty acids, which are good for Baby's brain and eye development.
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Best foods for weight gain in babies & toddlers (0 to 3 years)
This post has been updated with a new list of weight gaining recipes at the end of this post for toddlers – above 1 year old. Many readers have been asking for suggestions on best foods for weight gain in babies & toddlers. I have shared the tips that one can follow. If you are a new reader to this blog and have reached here looking for weight gaining foods or recipes for your little heart, please read this food chart for babies above 8 months.
I suggest following the recipes on the post as well for a good weight gain. I would also suggest to read the comments before posting your query here as similar queries may have been answered in the comment section below.
If you are looking for a food chart for baby around 6 months, you can refer this post on solids for 6 months baby.
Best foods for weight gain in babies & toddlers (0 months to 3 years)
1. Breast milk is one of the best foods for babies under 6 months to gain weight. Since mother’s milk is more nutritious than any other foods, it is good to exclusively breastfeed babies for the first 6 months.
If a baby is breast fed, mum needs to eat more nutritious foods to have enough milk supply and to increase the quality of milk.
To increase the milk supply in lactating mothers’ foods like milk, lentils (DAL), garlic, flax seeds (alasi in hindi or avise ginjalu in telugu), chickpeas (chana), almonds, whole grains, methi leaves, methi seeds, dill leaves (sabbasige soppu in kannada), fennel seeds (saunf), cumin (jeera) have been proved to be beneficial. One needs to include these in their diet moderately.
At least 2 protein rich meals and a breakfast should be included in the diet of a lactating mother. For vegetarians lentils / dal is a best protein rich food.
Chickpeas can be enjoyed by mums having babies older than 3 months. If using they need to be soaked overnight, soft cooked with turmeric and other Indian spices to prevent vata dosha.
Traditionally gond ke laddu, dry fruits ladoos and copra ladoos were eaten by lactating mothers to improve the quantity and quality of breast milk. Here are some protein rich ladoos which you can try after consulting your elders.
Gond ke laddu
Dry fruits ladoo
Copra ladoo (or dried coconut ladoo)
Here is a simple homemade powder for increasing milk supply in lactating mothers. Dry roast equal quantities of cumin and fennel seeds till they turn aromatic. Cool them and grind to powder.
Mix ½ tsp powder in ½ tsp warm ghee and consume 30 minutes before food 2 to 3 times a day. Desi ghee works best. This can be consumed for 2 weeks, followed by a break for 4 to 5 days and then repeat the cycle.
This also helps to reduce colic in breastfed babies. A small portion of ajwain/ carom seeds can also be included.
2. There is also a wide population of women who are unable to breast fed due to medical or professional reasons, yet their babies tend to grow well in terms of height and weight. For babies who are not breast fed, Formula milk has been proved to be of great help.
If your baby is over 6 months and you intend to stop breastfeeding, then choose a good formula milk with the help of your pediatrician. Formula milk is mostly balanced and has adequate nutrition which may not be available in dairy milk.
Formula milk helps to gain good weight in most babies, but one needs to be patient in trying out what works best for your baby. Many women express that formula milk is not good and hence should choose dairy milk.
Both have their own pros and cons. In the recent years, cows raised in farms are not grass-fed and are mostly on hormones either in their feed or injected to produce more milk. So it may be more unsafe than the formula milk.
A thorough research is conducted before any formula milk is sold in the market. So as a mother, you are the right person to choose between cow’s milk vs formula milk.
For babies above 12 months, fresh dairy milk can be used. Do not use milk that comes in tetra packs for babies and toddlers.
3. Foods like potato, pumpkin, sweet potato, dal, ghee, ragi, almonds, yogurt, eggs and milk help the baby to gain weight. Please take a pediatricians’ suggestion before you start any of these foods. As always follow a 3 day test rule.
How to make mashed potato for baby ?
Always choose hard potatoes that do not have any sprouts grown over them. Sprouted or soft potatoes are not healthy to use.
Wash and peel off the skin of the potato. Cook potato in excess water either in pressure cooker or a rice cooker steam basket or in a pot. It should be soft cooked.
While it is still hot, take it to a feeding bowl and mash it to soft. Add the potato stock that was left after cooking to make smooth puree. using a small steel glass you can easily mash it.
Add a pinch of ajwain and ghee and serve it warm. The same way you can also make mashed sweet potato for baby. Best time to serve these is for breakfast or lunch.
It can also be cooked along with rice to make a rice potato khichdi. You can find the recipe of sweet potato here (new post)
How much potato or sweet potato for baby?
7 months baby – 1 tbsp 2 to 3 times a week
8 to 10 months – 2 tbsp. 2 to 3 times a week
10 to 12 months – 3 to 4 tbsp. 2 to 3 times a week
toddlers- use your judgement . Can be served 5 times a week to daily.
Serve potato or sweet potato at least 2 to 3 times a week with little ajwain powder and ghee. Avoid when baby has tummy upset, colic or spit ups.
Moong dal and urad dal help a lot to gain weight in babies & toddlers. Urad dal is a power house of nutrients, high in calcium and protein and also EFA , essential fatty acids that help to develop the brain. So Idli is a very healthy food for babies.
Using urad dal make idli and serve with mild rasam or dal ka pani and ghee.This can be fed daily. You can find the recipe of soft idli here and a rasam recipe for babies here.
Include dal preferably moong dal or tuvar dal in lunch or breakfast every day. Do not mix dal with yogurt or milk. Just a simple vegetable dal rice khichdi works great for babies in gaining weight.
If your baby tends to get bored, change the vegetables used in the khichdi to give a different taste. You can find the recipe of dal khichdi here
Ragi porridge also helps to gain weight, it also strengthens the bones, teeth and helps for the overall development. Here is a complete post on how to introduce ragi to babies and how to make sprouted ragi flour for babies.
Yogurt and homemade paneer are also a good choice for babies over 8 months to gain weight. Serve yogurt alone or with brown rice and white rice in equal quantities.
I always used to make one cup curd separately for both my babies since it is not recommended to serve cold yogurt from the refrigerator. Also avoid serving in the evening or night.
how much yogurt/ curd to serve for babies ?
2 tbsp homemade unsweetened yogurt/ curd can be fed to 8 to 10 months baby, 2 to 3 times a week (avoid during winters)
4 tbsp can be fed to a 10 to 12 months baby. 3 to 4 times a week (avoid during winters)
Eggs also help babies to gain weight. Prefer boiled eggs instead of scrambled eggs. There is a loss of nutrition in scrambled eggs especially the protein content.
you can find the recipe of homemade curd here.
How to feed egg to baby ?
Make a hard boiled egg. Remove the yolk and take small portion of it and mash it with a pinch of cumin powder, add very little water and mash the egg to blend it well with water. It should become a smooth paste.
how much egg for 7 months old baby ?
For a 7 months baby – Start feeding a tsp of the above said mashed egg yolk. It can be served 2 times a week.
For 8 months baby – a tbsp and then increase the quantity.
For 10 months baby – by the end of 12 months a baby can eat the entire mashed yolk.
Include banana, papaya, apple, pear and chikoo (sapota). Serve banana at least 4 to 5 times a week. We give the small variety banana to babies. Avoid it when baby has cold and phlegm.
Serve a warm apple sauce or apple oats when the baby has cold and congestion. Banana helps to gain weight and most fruits helps to digest foods better since they contain natural digestive enzymes.
The nutrients from other foods are better absorbed by the body when a good amount of fruits are consumed (the right way).
Follow the rule, of feeding fruit alone without mixing with other foods at least once a day. Strictly do not serve fruits and milk together.
4. Ghee also helps to gain weight – How much ghee to serve for babies and toddlers ?
Start with only few drops a day when you introduce ghee to your baby. Try using organic and grassfed or desi ghee. Desi ghee can be found in ayurvedic stores or can also be bought online.
If you notice symptoms like coughing, itchy eyes or rubbing eyes or rashes stop it. Try with a new brand or try with homemade ghee. If your baby or toddler do not like the flavour of ghee, I suggest making ghee at home.
Just add few curry leaves towards the end when you make ghee at home, it adds a good aroma.
Excess usage of ghee may suppress the baby’s appetite, so use only as needed, a mother is the best judge. I followed the following measures for my babies and no cheese or butter was given to them.
If using butter then reduce the proportionate amount of ghee from the below mentioned quantity.
7 months ½ tsp ghee divided among 2 servings – start with only a few drops of melted ghee
8 months ¾ to 1 tsp ghee divided among 2 servings
10 months 1 to 1 ¼ tsp ghee divided among 3 servings
12 months on wards 1 to 1 ½ tsp ghee divided among 3 servings
Some babies may not digest fats in ghee well especially if formula milk, cheese, or butter are already a part of the diet. You can try with only half of the above quantity.
5. Can i use almonds / badam for my baby?
Experts advice not to introduce nuts to babies until 1 year as they may end up with severe allergies. So i would suggest waiting until your baby turns an year old especially if there is an history of allergy in your family.
However i have used almonds from 8 months for both my babies. Those who would like to try may start with almonds since these are the only kind of nuts that are slightly alkaline (apart from chestnuts).
Alkaline foods help us to keep our body healthy and energetic. Always try using soaked almonds. Soaking also increases the alkaline nature and hence digest well.
Soaking for about 5 to 6 hours also helps to peel the skin. They can be ground with little water and then used to cook baby foods like oats, ragi, rice etc.
6. Physical activity
Allow the baby to crawl freely, do not restrict your babies to prams or rocking chairs. Being physically active helps babies feel hungry in time. They are less fussy and eat or drink well.
Burping is very important as it helps to relieve the babies from colic and they tend to drink better. Gently Burp before feeding, in between the feeds, Burp after the feed. Keep the baby in upright position for at least 15 minutes after a feed.
Foods for weight gain in toddlers (above 1 year)
Pesarattu with ghee
Idli with ghee (1:2 proportion) – use search box for idli recipe
Soft thick dosa with boiled mashed potato
Chick pea / chana soup
chana dosa (with steamed mashed carrots)
moong dal soup
oats uttapam (use carrot for topping, follow method 2)
jowar dosa: you can make uttapam with carrot topping. Jowar makes bones strong and helps to gain good weight.
ragi mudde with rasam or any soup.
paneer paratha – no stuffing, good finger food too for snack in the evening
Boiled egg – boiled eggs have more nutrition than scrambled eggs. So try serving boiled egg with mild flavorings like pepper, cumin powder, ajwain and salt.
Suggestions from experienced mothers are welcome and highly appreciated to enhance this page.
Disclaimer: Please check with a pediatrician before you follow any of the tips or foods mentioned in this post.
My Heartfelt Thanks to all the Readers who have been consistently sharing with us their personal experiences with their babies, this has helped many new mothers to understand the baby food patterns and other food related issues.
Wishing a Wonderful Motherhood to all the MUMS
what high-calorie and healthy foods to eat for weight gain?
Often children have no appetite, it's not worth forcing, but review the diet. Read more about products for weight gain.
Let's start with the fact that sometimes parents cannot correctly estimate the weight of the child. For parents, the child is always hungry, undernourished, and has poor weight gain. In this case, only a doctor can make a diagnosis, so you first need to make an appointment, and then just do something.
If a child's weight does not correspond to age (and other parameters), only in this case it is worth reviewing the diet of the whole family. Why all? Because parents are an example and support for the child.
Products for weight gain for children
100 g of bananas contain approximately 90 kcal (1 banana - approximately 180-200 kcal), as well as potassium, which is necessary for the normal functioning of the cardiovascular system and magnesium for mood (nervous system) ). Bananas are fast energizing, so you can easily take them with you as a snack, for example, to the playground, if you go on a picnic, to the hospital, etc. But bananas are best consumed in the morning.
Ghee is made from quality butter. You can buy a ready-made version or cook at home. 100 g contains approximately 600 kcal, as well as vitamin E and A. In addition, it does not burn. If you cook on it.
So, to prepare a homemade version of ghee, you need to take butter with at least 82% fat content, cut it into pieces and send it to the pan. Over low heat, the butter will first melt, then foam, and then begin to turn from yellow to amber. When the oil becomes a brownish hue, sediment can be seen at the bottom - impurities that were added to the product during its production. Now you need to pour the oil into a jar, but without sediment.
Free of additives and sugar. Natural yogurt is rich in calcium and also has the right ratio of fat and calories to help your baby gain weight. However, as additives, you can use fresh fruits and berries, which are already available on the shelves of supermarkets and bazaars.
Of course, not chips and not fried. 100 g of potatoes contain approximately 76 kcal (if without additives, such as ghee), but there is a caveat - it is important to cook this product correctly. The more “manipulations” (peel, cut, crush) done with potatoes, the higher its glycemic index (an indicator of how much a particular product affects blood sugar levels), the more harmful it is for the body - the product dramatically increases blood sugar , and then it also decreases sharply, provoking the appearance of hunger. In order not to increase the glycemic index in potatoes, it is good to cook the product whole and not even peel it. It is enough to wash thoroughly, dry with a paper towel, add spices and send to bake in the oven. Then add ghee and herbs. The dish is ready!
But remember, don't make decisions on your own, consult your doctor!
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Proper nutrition healthy eating
Weight Gain Infant Formula: Helping Small Babies
09/23/2019 Reading time: 5 min 138391
Contents of the article
- Why stable weight gain is important
- Causes of underweight
- Determining the norm of weight
- How to determine the lack of weight
- What to do if you are underweight
- Weight gain infant formula
- How to choose the right mix
- How long can I feed my baby with PRE-formula
- Which blend does Nutrilak offer?
Lack of body weight appears due to various reasons, it can be congenital or acquired. In order for the baby to gain the desired weight, it is necessary to adjust both the feeding regimen and the diet.
Why stable weight gain is important
Indicators of the length and body weight of the child at birth and in the future are one of the main parameters by which the state of health of the baby is assessed. WHO has established certain norms (averages) for monthly weight gain based on many factors and studies. Stable weight gain indicates normal growth and development of the baby, the correct formation of the digestive system, the timely production of enzymes in the intestines, good metabolism and absorption of food. A child is usually said to be underweight when their weight deviates by more than 10% compared to the age norm*. The disorder may be accompanied by a decrease in immunity, serious disturbances in metabolic processes, and a lag in speech and psychomotor development.
Causes of underweight
- Genetic failures and pathologies. This category includes chromosomal abnormalities, constitutional abnormalities (for example, diathesis), fermentopathy (malabsorption syndrome, lactase deficiency, etc.), immunodeficiency, etc. All of these factors are endogenous and almost all are congenital. Also, children born with heart defects, deformation of the lips or jaw (cleft lip, cleft palate) can also have a weight deficit, as a result of which the child cannot fully suckle and, accordingly, eat.
- Insufficient nutrition. It can be caused by persistent underfeeding of the infant due to flat or inverted nipples on the mother's breast, which makes sucking difficult, as well as a small amount of milk, frequent regurgitation.
- Wrong mode. Long breaks between feedings can cause insufficient weight gain. Normally, a newborn baby is recommended to be fed every 2-3 hours if he is breastfed, and every 3 hours if he is formula fed.
- Digestive problems. Intestinal infections, dysbacteriosis, acute respiratory viral infections, and a number of other diseases can lead to disturbances in the functioning of the organs of the gastrointestinal tract. If the food is not digested completely, it is poorly absorbed, then the child's body ceases to receive vitamins and microelements necessary for normal life.
Determination of the norm of weight
Children are individual. This applies not only to appearance and character traits, but also to weight. Some babies are born large, and someone's body weight will be below average. All this is considered normal.
This is important!
The weight of a healthy full-term baby is usually in the range of 2.6 to 4 kilograms, but deviations from these values are allowed. Monthly weight gain is also labile and depends on many factors. Pediatricians and parents are guided by the average values of body weight gain.
Dr. Komarovsky recommends calculating the increase according to the following formulas:
It is important to note that a small increase in body weight that does not correspond to average norms or its absence at all is not a reason to immediately talk about pathological changes in the baby's body. For the most part, children grow in leaps and bounds and can gain a decent weight in one month, and in the next two add almost only in height. Also, a small increase may be due to the increased activity of the baby. If he learns to crawl or walk, moves a lot and expends energy, then the lack of mass becomes quite understandable. Thus, if the child is active, inquisitive, mobile, develops in accordance with age and has excellent tests, you should not worry**. But lethargy, apathy, pallor against the background of underweight - a reason for an immediate appeal to a specialist. Only he can make an accurate diagnosis.
What to do if you are underweight
Many parents today have special scales at home for weighing babies. Thanks to them, they can control the weight of the child. If for a long time the body weight of the crumbs does not change, you should contact a competent specialist, but in no case should you make diagnoses yourself. The doctor will conduct a professional examination, issue directions for the necessary examinations (if necessary) and give recommendations. If the weight loss is minimal, it is usually necessary to adjust the diet and diet. In cases where a small increase is due to some disease (rotavirus infection, etc.), the doctor prescribes the appropriate treatment to eliminate the cause of underweight.
Weight Gain Infant Formula
For small children who have problems with weight gain, special infant formulas may be recommended. Their composition takes into account the need of such babies for vitamins, minerals and other nutrients. They contain more proteins, fats and carbohydrates. The quality of the protein component is of great importance, and easily digestible whey proteins prevail over the casein fraction in them. To facilitate the absorption of the fat component, the diet includes medium chain triglycerides (MCT), which can be absorbed into the intestine without the participation of enzymes. And for the absorption of carbohydrates, part of the lactose can be replaced by maltodextrin. Weight gain formulas have the word or prefix "PRE" in the product name.
How to choose the right mix
This is important!
The decision to prescribe a specialized diet for an underweight baby should be made by a specialist. If a doctor recommends a PRE-mixture to a child, then attention should be paid to the fact that it additionally contains such useful components as omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids for the development of the central nervous system, nucleotides for the formation and strengthening of immunity, prebiotics for improving digestion.
How long can I feed my baby with PRE-formula
Specialized nutrition can be used both in full and in partial (as supplementary feeding) volume. Formulas can be given from birth through the first year of life if needed. The duration of such nutrition depends on the deficit in body weight and the subsequent dynamics of weight gain. Once the baby's weight is normal, the PRE formula can be replaced with a standard formula suitable for the baby's age.
Which blend does Nutrilakoffer?
Nutrilak Premium PRE is a specialty formula for small and premature babies that has been clinically proven effective for underweight babies.