Pap

Doctor Reveals Why Pap Alone Is Insufficient For The Growth Of Children

A Nigerian doctor has advised parents not to rely solely on pap for the growth of their children.

Dr Chinwe Ogbonna-Njoku a Senior Registrar at the University of Port Harcourt Teaching Hospital gave this advice.

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She said that although pap is a very nutritious meal for babies, mothers should also alternate pap with other nutritious meals.

Ogbonna-Njoku suggested various other substitutes like;

  • Egg.
  • Fish.
  • Avocados.
  • Butter
  • Fruits.

The doctor said these meals should be introduced to children gradually from six months.

Her words:

“Pap is a very nutritious meal high in carbohydrate, B vitamins and has some protein and other micronutrients.

“Pap is very good but in itself not 100 per cent adequate as the only meal. Kids will still need foods richer in proteins like egg, fish, and fats and oil e.g avocados, butter, and vitamin C from fruits.

“Of course, breastfeeding is very beneficial and recommended till two years.

Read the latest health news about the Pregnancy diet

However, from six months, babies can gradually be introduced to the whole range of family diet as they can take. The more the variety, the better.”

The UNICEF also advised parents to introduce babies to solid food from six months.

This food would be an added diet to breast milk. It said that this would attend to the growing needs of the babies.

It said:

“When your baby is six months old, she is just learning to chew.

“Her first foods need to be soft so they’re very easy to swallow, such as porridge or well-mashed fruits and vegetables.

The statement also revealed that watery porridge doesn’t have as many nutrients as thick porridge.

It continued:

“Did you know that when the porridge is too watery, it doesn’t have as many nutrients?

“To make it more nutritious, cook it until it’s thick enough not to run off the spoon.    

“Feed your baby when you see her give signs that she’s hungry

 – such as putting her hands to her mouth.

“After washing hands, start by giving your baby just two to three spoonfuls of soft food, twice a day.

“At this age, her stomach is small so she can only eat small amounts at each meal.

“The taste of a new food may surprise your baby. Give her time to get used to these new foods and flavours. Be patient and don’t force your baby to eat. Watch for signs that she is full and stop feeding her then.

“As your baby grows, her stomach also grows and she can eat more food with each meal.”

Also, read the latest health news in Nigeria on COVID-19

Non-breastfed

The UN agency said non-breastfed babies need more food and would need to eat more frequently. This is because they need these foods including milk products to get all the needed nutrition

“Start to give your baby solid foods at 6 months of age, just as a breastfed baby would need. Begin with two to three spoonfuls of soft and mashed food four times a day, which will give her the nutrients she needs without breast milk.

“From six to eight months old, she’ll need half a cup of soft food four times a day, plus a healthy snack.

“From nine to 11 months old, she’ll need half a cup of food four to five times a day, plus two healthy snacks,” it said.

Source: PUNCH HealthWise

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