iron fortified? - Mothering Forums
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#1 of 7 Old 08-06-2003, 04:41 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Question......DD is 7 months old and I have started making my own baby food. You read about how babies are supposed to have iron fortified food, but if we're making our own food, this really isn't possible. Does anyone have thoughts on this?
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#2 of 7 Old 08-06-2003, 04:56 PM
 
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I also have a daughter who is 7 months old, and I make her baby food as well.

She is formula fed and the fomula is iron fortified, so I don't worry too much about her iron levels, but if you are breastfeeding and are concerned about her iron levels you could be sure to include foods in her diet that are high in iron. Also, if you use a premade baby cereal, they are normally iron fortified. We use Earths Best organic cereals. Otherwise, things like avacado, bannana, squzsh and other vegies will probably be okay for now. If you want, the DR can do an iron check at 9 months if you are worried about her levels.

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#3 of 7 Old 08-06-2003, 05:25 PM
 
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I don't worry about not feeding iron-fortified foods. I haven't started any solids with my 7 mo DS yet, but when I do, they'll all be homemade. The way I see it is that God (insert nature here if you prefer) made us to survive. We don't need foods with extra stuff added in, even if the stuff added is supposedly "good." If our teeth needed lots of floride, there would be floride in lots of foods. If we needed more vitamin D than our bodies could make and if the sun were really all that bad for us, there would be more vitamin D in foods. Likewise, if babies needed extra iron, there would be more iron in foods that babies typically eat.

The iron that's in formula and the baby foods that have it added is poorly digested. Iron started to be added to foods when most moms were formula feeding. While breastmilk doesn't have a lot of iron, it's very absorbable. I wouldn't worry about it. When you introduce meats (if you're not vegetarian), you might want to pair them with foods with vitamin C to increase the iron absorbtion, but it can't be bad to give your baby food as it occurs in nature.
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#4 of 7 Old 08-06-2003, 07:59 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Yeah, I was kind of thinking that mother nature intended us to eat her food the way it is and not all processed with added stuff. DD is mostly on breastmilk now anyway, so I'm sure she's getting plenty of iron, I was just thinking about when her solids intake increases and breastmilk decreases, but then I was thinking to myself "how did babies ever make it before the advent of fortified foods" ---- I think they made it, so I've decided not to worry too much about it.
Thanks for the feedback.

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#5 of 7 Old 08-07-2003, 03:46 AM
 
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Just wanted to add that there are lots of foods naturally fortified with iron, such as lentils and spinach to name a few.

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#6 of 7 Old 08-07-2003, 04:00 AM
 
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Raising a vegetarian child, I too became obsessed with my child's iron and protein intake.
I would heartly recommend the Super Baby Food Book, you can find it at Amazon. The author writes very clearly on baby/child nutritional requirements and gives many recipes and ideas on how to ensure that your child recieves natural and balanced meals.
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#7 of 7 Old 08-23-2003, 02:30 PM
 
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A friend recently emailed me info on this topic from somewhere on these pages - don't know where sorry. have erased it from my email now. but the gist was that the iron in breastmilk is 75 % bioavailable while that from solid food is only about 25% bioavailable (ie absorbed by the body). the article said that high iron foods actually interfere with absorption of iron from breastmilk - so one shouldn't give solids at the same feeding as breastmilk. they were also saying its best to start with low iron grains eg brown rice and not things like barley etc which are high in iron, for the above reason. when the babe is really seriously eating solids, not just playing with them, then start the high iron foods eg peas, barley etc...
So, if you're breastfeeding, don't worry about iron. if you give formula, yes, give high-iron foods. I don't think they need to be fortified though, as inorganic iron is indigestible and causes constipation.
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