Food poisoning and other diseases related to unsafe foods result into the death of hundreds of thousands of babies worldwide. This is because a baby’s digestive and immune system can handle the assault of bad food.
Poorly prepared food has harmful bacteria, virus, and parasites that can cause debilitating diseases that hamper your child’s growth and development. You therefore need to take the utmost caution when it comes to preparing and handling food that your baby consumes. Besides safety, you must also ensure that your baby gets the required nutritional needs.
Wash your hands
This is common sense rule for handling food for everyone. While you can get away with not washing your hands when handling foods for adults because their immune system is strong, it can make your baby seriously sick.
Wash your hands with soap and warm water before handling your baby’s foods and all the utensils to be used in preparing and serving baby’s food. Remember, infants and toddlers are most vulnerable to catching disease as they are still building their immunity.
Cook it properly
Baby foods must be well-cooked to kill any bacteria or parasite. This is particularly important for meats and milk that has bacteria that can survive in mild temperatures.
If you are reheating the food, it’s best that you reheat to the right temperature before allowing it to cool down a bit.
The best food for your baby is fresh food but it’s impossible to always cook a fresh meal whenever your baby is hungry and it’s okay to store their foods as long as you keep it safe from contamination. The containers where you store your baby’s food can affect their health.
For foods that will be consumed within a few hours, invest in a Foodsaver Fm2000 which is spacious and can hold enough food for several feeding sessions. For long-term preservation, keep the foods in the freezer but even then know how long the food is supposed to last frozen to avoid feeding your baby bad food. In general, fruits can stay in the freezer for up to six months while meats last for a month.
Do not however put foods that will be eaten within the next 48 hours in the freezer. Use the refrigerator instead to minimize the reheating time.
More importantly, never mix your foods especially raw meats with fresh vegetables and fruits as this can lead to contamination and subsequently food poisoning.
If you don’t have specific food containers for storing baby food then make sure all the containers with baby food is clearly labelled. This helps you know how long the food has been in the refrigerator as well as informing the other family members to handle it with care.
Always ensure that when feeding your child, you scoop food from the original container to another dish and use another spoon altogether in case baby needs a re-fill.
This is to avoid contamination as saliva from the same spoon used to double dip between the containers increases the chances of bacterial and germ breeding. When feeding time is over, throw out anything that is left in the bowl. If there is food left in the jar, put the lid back on and store it in the refrigerator.