Friday 7 August 2020


Feeding problems such as refusal to eat, disruptive meal time behavior and pickiness are common and part of the normal development of infants and toddlers. These feeding problems can lead to family stress with long-term negative consequences of children’s nutrition (under nutrition or over nutrition), behavior and growth. 
Early in life, children learn that refusal to eat is a powerful strategy that attracts the mother’s or caregiver’s attention and may lead to increased access to favorite fruits and snacks. Picky eating is usually just another method they use to express their strong desire for independence. Nagging, forcing, or bribing children to eat reinforces picky-eating behaviours because of the extra attention. Bribing children to eat a new food may achieve the parent’s immediate goal, but it often has negative results in the long run. In subsequent meals when the reward is removed, children eat less of the hurdle food. Bribing children to eat also teaches them that food is an appropriate reward.  

Feeding Guidelines

The nurturing of a young child involves more than nutrition, but also a safe, loving, secure environment in which the children may grow and develop.

  • Discourage unacceptable behaviour (such as standing at the table or throwing food). Be consistent and firm, not punitive.
  • Let young children explore and enjoy food. This may mean eating with fingers for a while. Learning to use a spoon will come in time. Children who are allowed to touch, mash, and smell their food while exploring it are more likely to accept it.
  • Meal presentation should be attractive: Color their plates with all kinds of great-tasting vegetables. Meals should include a variety of foods from each food group—in amounts suited to their appetites and needs.
  • Don’t force food on children. Rejecting new foods is normal, and acceptance is more likely as children become familiar with new foods through repeated opportunities to taste them.
  • Provide nutritious foods, and let children choose which ones, and how much, they will eat. Gradually, they will acquire a taste for different foods.
  • Limit sweets. Infants and young children have little room for empty calorie foods in their daily energy allowance. Do not use sweets as a reward for eating meals.
  • Don’t turn the dining table into a battleground. Make mealtimes enjoyable. Teach healthy food choices and eating habits in a pleasant environment. Mealtimes are not the time to fight, argue, or scold.

If a child fails to eat enough to support healthy growth and development, consult a registered dietitian-nutritionist.

Wednesday 5 August 2020


First week of August each year, the world celebrate World Breastfeeding Week (WBW). The team for the WBW 2020 is: Breastfeeding; the Foundation of Life. They so aim is  to give the people every knowledge about the positive effects of breastfeeding on the infants when they get a mother's milk.  Breastmilk is very important and necessary as it provides optimum nutrition for the infant and also has many non nutritional benefits for both mother and child. World Health Organization (WHO) and Paediatrics Society recommend that one should aim for exclusive breastfeeding for the first 4-6 months of life. WHO also recommends breastfeeding up to 2 years of life especially in countries/populations with high rates of infectious diseases as this will help in reducing morbidity and mortality rates.

Benefits of exclusive breastfeeding to the child includes;

  • It reduces the risk of developing non communicable diseases later in life. 
  • It positively influences the child’s immune system against infectious diseases such as diarrhea and respiratory tract infections.
  • It reduced a child chances of having immune related diseases such as diabetes, asthma, and inflammatory bowel diseases.
  • The relatively low protein content of breast milk compared to cow’s milk meets the infant’s needs without overloading the immature kidneys with nitrogen.
  • Minerals in breast milk are largely protein-bound and balanced to enhance their availability and meet infant needs with minimal demand on maternal reserves.
  • Breastfeeding influences the infantile growth especially during the few months of life.
  • Breastfed infants gain weight during the first months of life and grow leaner during the first year of life than formula fed infants. This explains the reason for lower risk of noncommunicable diseases such as obesity later in life.

Steps to a successful breastfeeding
  • Initiate breastfeeding within the first hour of birth.
  • Encourage breastfeeding on demand.
  • Breastfeed and maintain lactation even if you’re separated from your baby.
  • Give no teats or pacifier to breastfeeding infant.
  • Practice rooming in-that is, you and your infant should remain together 24 hours a day.

Promote, protect and support breastfeeding for a healthier planet.