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By Mummies For Mummies (and Daddies too)

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Formula & Food

New Parents Essentials Checklist by Babydash

nursery-essentials-01-1

If you’re expecting your first child, we believe you’ll be browsing the internet for checklists – what to pack in your hospital bag, which baby items should you buy, where to buy, what are the recommended brands, etc. However, there are so many lists online and trust us, you don’t wanna go through them all and fall into the trap of over-buying or under-prepared. So, we at Babydash have compiled a minimalist yet comprehensive list for your reference.

P.S.: Our Community Lead has just given birth to her second baby boy about three months ago, so she has the latest insights for these checklists. 🙂

Hospital bag checklist (when you go to the hospital!)

Mommy-and-baby bag

  • Disposable maternity pads (in case you need more than what the hospital provides)
  • Disposable panties (highly recommended!)
  • Pyjamas (2-3 sets in case you’re discharged later)
  • Bottom healing spray (we recommend Earth Mama Angel Baby) to aid your bottom’s healing after vaginal birth or cesarean section wound healing salve for C-section mamas
  • Toiletries
  • Going-home clothes (we recommend nursing dress or blouse such as Ratuwear)
  • Nursing bras (2-3 pieces)
  • Nipple cream (we recommend Earth Mama Angel Baby)
  • Newborn sleep-suits, hats, mittens, booties (3-4 sets)
  • Newborn disposable diapers (we recommend 1 pack of Goo.N on standby in case the hospital doesn’t provide sufficient amount of diapers)
  • Swaddles / receiving blankets (1-2 pieces)
  • Birth plan (as approved by ob/gyn)
  • Hospital appointment card
  • Purse (identification card, money, credit card)
  • Mobile phone & charger/power bank

Daddy’s bag

  • T-shirts, pants, underwear, pyjamas, socks
  • Towel
  • Toiletries
  • Mobile phone charger and/or power bank

Note: Please remember to install your newborn’s car seat in your car earlier before you’re due to deliver your baby.

Mommy’s postpartum checklist (for the first 2-3 months)

For your body

For breastfeeding

Mommy’s pumping checklist (when back to work)

Pumping

Bottle feeding

Baby’s nursery checklist

Toiletries & Grooming

Diapering

First-aid

Cleaning

Playtime

Diaper bag checklist (with kids under 3 years old)

On-the-go / travel checklist

We hope these checklists will be helpful for you!

How to Feed Your Children Healthily

We have compiled quick guides and tips for parents regarding feeding your child healthily.

1. Start right from young

signs-of-readinessSource: https://www.pinterest.com/pin/95701560807556638/

More info on our previous blog post: Starting Solids for Babies

2. Introduce food based on age group

food-chart-for-babiesSource: http://wholesomebabyfood.momtastic.com/solidfoodchartbyfood.htm

Note: This chart should not be used to replace the advice from your baby’s pediatrician. Always consult your baby’s pediatrician before introducing new foods to your baby. Please remember that all foods have the potential to be an allergen.

3. Feed them good fats such as avocados

avocado-ripeness-chart

The chart above shows how to choose ripe avocados. Find out how to keep an avocado from browning to avoid wastage.

4. Monitor the consumption of sugar

Children should have no more than 19g of sugar a day for children aged 4 to 6 years old (5 sugar cubes), and no more than 24g (6 sugar cubes) for children aged 7 to 10 years old.

Tips for parents:

  • Go for whole fruits rather than juices because whole fruits contain fiber whereas fruit juices are high in fructose
  • Avoid sugary fizzy drinks and sodas; get your children to drink plain water
  • Whenever possible, avoid giving commercial sugary cereals, dried fruit bars, sweet yogurts, biscuits and cakes for breakfast too frequently
  • Choose wholegrain breakfast cereals that are not coated with processed sugar or honey
  • Make your own pasta sauces when you cook pasta because ready-made pasta sauces are high in sugar. If you’re baking, try halving the sugars used in the recipes
  • Keep an eye on food labels. Sugar is sometimes listed on the ingredients list as cane sugar, honey, brown sugar, high fructose corn syrup, fruit juice concentrate, corn syrup, fructose, sucrose, glucose, crystalline sucrose, nectar.

5. Monitor the consumption of salt

The maximum recommended amount of salt for babies and children is:

  • Up to 12 months – less than 1g of salt a day (less than 0.4g sodium)
  • 1 to 3 years – 2g of salt a day (0.8g sodium)
  • 4 to 6 years – 3g of salt a day (1.2g sodium)
  • 7 to 10 years – 5g of salt a day (2g sodium)
  • 11 years and over – 6g of salt a day (2.4g sodium)

Tips for parents:

  • Do not to add salt, soy sauce and seasonings to your baby’s food because their tiny kidneys cannot cope with it
  • Always check nutrition labels
  • Avoid processed meats such as ham, bacon and sausages
  • Introduce pizza, nuggets, fish fingers as occasional treat only
  • Limit store-bought biscuits, crisps, crackers, soups, sauces, gravies, canned foods; if needed, go for low-sodium options
  • Limit ready- or microwavable-meals
  • Always introduce naturally low-salt foods: fruits, vegetables, plain meat, poultry, fresh fish, eggs, lentils, chick peas, milk

6. Introduce whole grains to substitute refined carbohydrates

Reduce the consumption of refined carbohydrates such as white rice, bread, pasta and noodles. Go for whole grains, examples in image below:

wholegrainsSource: http://news.nutritioneducationstore.com/

How to include whole grains in your children’s meals?

  • When you’re making a sandwich, use one slice of white bread and another slice of wholemeal bread
  • Mix brown rice or millet or quinoa with white rice
  • Serve whole grain cereals with milk or yogurt and your children’s favorite fruits
  • Bake healthy muffins with rolled oats
  • Add chia seeds into overnight oats

 

Don’t forget to check out our Facebook page and Instagram for more healthy eating tips and recipes!

12 Prenatal & Postnatal Essentials for Mothers

If you are currently pregnant or have just given birth, take a look at our selected twelve prenatal & postnatal essentials for you, mommies!

1. Mustela 9 Months Specific Support Bust

mustela-bust-support

Mustela 9 Months Specific Support Bust is specially formulated for breast care during pregnancy and breastfeeding. It firms breasts, soothes tightness, tones skin, and improves skin elasticity and suppleness to make your breasts more resistant to changes in volume. This combination of exclusive ingredients of natural origin – Elastoregulator, Lupeol, Calendula, Avocado Peptides – prevents skin slackening and loss of elasticity.

You can start using Specific Support Bust early in your pregnancy when your breasts are swollen and tender. Apply it by gently massaging in a circular movement, from the outside towards the middle of the breast. Recommended for usage for your breasts, upper chest and neck, twice a day, from the beginning of pregnancy until the end of breastfeeding.

Buy online – https://www.babydash.com.my/bath-skincare/bath-brands/mustela/mustela-specific-support-bust-125ml.html

2. Mustela: Stretch Marks Care Oil

mustela-stretch-mark-care-oil

Mustela Stretch Marks Care Oil is effective in preventing and minimizing new and recent stretch marks. This pampering dry oil – with oils from pomegranate seed, musk rose, baobab, avocado, sunflower, and Lupeol – boosts the production of fibers that strengthen the skin and improve the elasticity and softness of your skin during and after pregnancy.

You can use Mustela Stretch Marks Care Oil from the early stages of pregnancy until three months after childbirth. Spray into the palm and apply to belly, breasts, hips, and thighs and massage in gently.

Buy online – https://www.babydash.com.my/bath-skincare/bath-brands/mustela/mustela-stretch-marks-care-oil-105ml.html

3. Mustela Stretch Marks Intensive Action

mustela-stretch-mark

Mustela Stretch Mark Intensive Action contains Alpha Hydroxy Acid that minimizes existing stretch marks during pregnancy and after giving birth. It moisturizes skin and maintains skin elasticity and suppleness. Infused with Silicone and Vitamin B5, Stretch Mark Intensive Action intensively corrects stretch-mark-prone skin.

Highly concentrated in regenerating agents, this cream should be applied directly to all existing stretch marks, twice a day for 2 to 3 months. The special precision tip applicator ensures targeted application with no waste. You will see noticeable difference in your skin.

Buy online – https://www.babydash.com.my/bath-skincare/bath-brands/mustela/mustela-stretch-marks-intensive-action-75ml.html

4. Earth Mama Angel Baby New Mama Bottom Spray

emab-mama-bottom-spray

Earth Mama Angel Baby Mama Bottom Spray is a cooling, refreshing perineal mist for speedy recovery after birth. Its all-natural ingredients include witch hazel distillate and antibacterial pure essential oils help reduce swollen tissues and ease postpartum vaginal soreness, episiotomy, and hemorrhoids. You can spray this cooling mist onto your perineum as often as needed, especially after urination and bathing.

Buy online – https://www.babydash.com.my/bath-skincare/bath-brands/earth-mama-angel-baby/earth-mama-angel-baby-new-mama-bottom-spray-120ml-hot-item.html

5. Medela PureLan 100 Nipple Care

medela-purelan

For new mothers who are facing sore and sensitive nipples from breastfeeding your newborn, Medela PureLan 100 Nipple Care is here to help. Medela PureLan is a pure lanolin nipple cream that helps soothe sensitive or dry nipples and helps form an additional protective barrier over sore or irritated nipples during breastfeeding. It’s safe for both mom and baby so you do not need to remove before breastfeeding.

Buy online:

7g – https://www.babydash.com.my/nursing-feeding/nursing-brands/medela/medela-purelan-100-nipple-care-7g.html

37g – https://www.babydash.com.my/nursing-feeding/nursing-brands/medela/medela-purelan-100-nipple-care-37g.html

6. Buds Cherished Organics For Mum – Organic Breast Massage Oil

buds-breast-massage-oil

Buds Cherished Organics Breast Massage Oil helps breastfeeding mothers stay calm and relaxed and promotes lactation, making breastfeeding easier.

  • Organic Sweet Fennel Oil: promotes lactation
  • Organic Inca Inchi Oil: high in essential fatty acids (EFAs) to rebuild and maintain protective lipid barrier
  • Organic Rosemary Oil: a potent antioxidant, strengthens and protects the tender skin on the breasts
  • Organic Lavender Oil: calms, relaxes and soothes
  • Organic Sunflower Oil, Organic Olive Oil & Organic Jojoba Oil: nourish and moisturize

Before feeding, gently massage your breast from the outside towards the nipple to encourage milk letdown. Apply after every feed to protect and moisturize the tender area around your nipples.

Buy online – https://www.babydash.com.my/nursing-feeding/nursing-brands/buds/buds-cherished-organics-for-mum-organic-breast-massage-oil-30ml.html

7. Human Nature Natural Strengthening Shampoo with Cream Foam (Soothing Aloe)

human-nature-aloe-shampoo

Save your hair before it’s gone especially if you’re entering the third or fourth month postpartum. Hair loss is real! Human Nature Natural Strengthening Shampoo is infused with hydrolyzed protein to fortify your hair, and Philippine coco nectar, a revolutionary ingredient packed with amino acids, vitamins and minerals. Clinically proven to reduce hair fall by 80% and thicken the hair by 90% after 4 weeks of continuous use. For silky strong hair, follow up with Natural Strengthening Conditioner.

Buy online – https://www.babydash.com.my/bath-skincare/bath-brands/human-nature/human-nature-strengthening-shampoo-with-cream-foam-soothing-aloe-500ml-10-off.html

8. Human Nature Natural Strengthening Conditioner (Soothing Aloe)

human-nature-aloe-conditioner

Give yourself a double dose of strength with Human Nature’s Natural Strengthening Conditioner in tandem with their Natural Strengthening Shampoo. Teeming with gugo bark and calamansi, this conditioner helps fortify your hair to reduce both breakage and hair loss. Organic virgin coconut oil caps off this triple goodness combo, leaving your locks stronger, healthier and smelling refreshingly clean without harsh chemicals!

Buy online – https://www.babydash.com.my/bath-skincare/bath-brands/human-nature/human-nature-strengthening-conditioner-aloe-500ml-10-off.html

9. Haakaa Silicone Breast Pump & Lid Combo

haakaa-silicone-pump-combo

Haakaa’s silicone breast pump is 100% medical grade, eco-friendly and simple to use. It fits perfectly into any handbag or baby bag and requires no hard work. Also the best travel pump you will find! Made from 100% medical grade silicone, this compact pump is perfect for long distance trips, planes, car rides, family BBQ’s or anywhere you would like to discretely express, quickly.

Simply attach the suction cup to your breast and let the pump do the work for you as it draws your milk using suction. 100% eco-friendly and safe for mum, baby and the environment.

Buy online – https://www.babydash.com.my/nursing-feeding/nursing-brands/haakaa/haakaa-combo-silicone-breast-pump-and-lid-100ml.html

10. Double Monkeys Poncho Breastfeeding Cover (Certified 100% Organic Cotton)

double-monkeys-bf-poncho

Double Monkeys Poncho Breastfeeding Cover is made from certified 100% organic cotton. You can breastfeed your baby anywhere with ease and without worry because it gives you complete coverage front and back! It has a stiff curved neckline so that you can easily view and check on your baby.

Buy online – https://www.babydash.com.my/nursing-feeding/nursing-brands/double-monkeys.html

11. Topfer Tea for Nursing Mothers

topfer-organic-nursing-tea

Topfer Tea for Nursing Mothers is an easily digestible, balanced and soothing tea for nursing mothers to ensure relaxed breastfeeding. The well-balanced mixture of natural herbs (caraway, anise, goat’s rue) stimulates milk production. Nettle helps to improve iron absorption in the blood.

Buy online – https://www.babydash.com.my/nursing-feeding/nursing-brands/topfer-organic/topfer-tea-for-nursing-mothers.html

12. Milky Bites Lactation Cookies & MOM MORE MILK Lactation Cookies and Brownies

milky-bites mom-more-milk

Milky Bites Lactation Cookies are 100% natural soft lactation cookies made from the best ingredients with no refined sugar, no alcohol, and absolutely no preservatives! They come in three different flavors – Oatmeal Ginger, Brownie Date, and Chocolate Peanut Butter.

Buy online – https://www.babydash.com.my/formula-food/food/milky-bites-by-babyjumi.html

MOM MORE MILK Lactation Cookies and Brownies are all baked with wholesome natural lactogenic ingredients such as rolled oats, organic flaxseed meal, wheat germ and pure malt to boost your breast milk production. You can choose your flavor – Cranberry & White Choc Chip, Oats & Hershey’s Choc Chip, Lactation Brownies.

Buy online – https://www.babydash.com.my/formula-food/food/mom-more-milk.html

Starting Solids for Babies

weaning-talk-flyer

After attending the Starting Solids for Babies talk organized by Columbia Asia Hospital Petaling Jaya on 9 October, we’d like to share with you important and interesting tips presented by the speakers.

There were three topics by three speakers:

  1. How to Win at Weaning by Dr. Sharifah Aida Alhabshi, Consultant Pediatrician
  2. Feeding Fussy Eaters by Dr. Shalini Shanmugam, Consultant Pediatrician
  3. Fun & Yummy Healthy Meals by Ms. Ng Yee Voon, Registered Dietitian

 

Here are the notes. We do hope they will be helpful for you!

I. How to Win at Weaning

What is weaning?

Weaning is transitioning from exclusive breastfeeding / milk feeds to complementary solid food and finally into family food. This happens after six months old right up to 24 months.

The rules of weaning

  1. Appropriate timing – look out for signs of readiness
    • Baby can sit up
    • Baby shows interest in food
    • Baby opens his mouth when food is offered
    • Baby can turn head away from spoon when he’s full
    • Baby can pick up pieces of food for self-feeding
  2. Provide adequate amount of energy for optimal growth
    • Give energy-rich food from grains (rice) and tubers (potatoes, sweet potatoes)
    • Can add butter / margarine for adequate fat content
  3. Provide adequate nutrition
    • Give a variety of nutrient-rich food from meat, fruits and vegetables
    • Introduce one type of food at a time for 3-4 days and watch out for any symptoms, especially if there’s history of food allergies in your family
    • Provide enough fluid and fiber intake
  4. Increase frequency of solid food by age
    • At 6-8 months: 2-3 main meals + 1-2 snacks (if needed) – start with 1/2 teaspoon, can dilute with breastmilk / milk for familiar taste
    • At 9-11 months: 3-4 main meals + 1-2 snacks (if needed)
    • Above 12 months: 3-4 main meals + 2 snacks
    • Do not replace / reduce breastfeeding / milk feeds with main meals
  5. Increase food consistency by age
    • > 6 months – pureed, smooth
    • 7-8 months – mashed
    • > 8 months – chopped
    • By 12 months – family food

 

II. Feeding Fussy Eaters

Who are fussy eaters?

They are usually older babies or toddlers from one to two years old:

  • Eats very slowly
  • Eats a limited variety of food
  • Only eats small meals
  • Don’t like fruits and vegetables
  • Isn’t interested in food
  • Only eats what he / she likes
  • Won’t try new foods

How to make meal times work for fussy eaters?

  1. Environment
    • Minimize distractions by turning off TV and other devices (zero screen time) during meal times
    • Eat at the dining table
    • Eat together as a family and everyone eats the same meal
    • Let your child make a mess! Be patient, set rules but be flexible (authoritative parenting)
    • Stick to a routine, don’t skip or keep on changing it
  2. Food
    • Color – make colorful meals with shapes and decorations (e.g. food art)
    • Texture – increase food texture gradually to avoid boredom
    • Taste – use natural sweetness from fruits and flavorings from cheese, onion, garlic
    • Let your child eat food that he least likes first, followed by food that he likes
    • Don’t resort to food rewards, i.e. if you eat your rice, I’ll let you eat some cake
    • Make healthy choices for snacks, e.g. give fruits instead of chocolate
    • Go grocery/food shopping with your child and let him choose what he wants to eat
    • Let your child take part in food preparation
  3. Mood
    • Make sure that your child is sufficiently hungry and NO snacks before a main meal
    • As a parent, don’t show negative emotions such as anger and disappointment, be patient, be mindful of the food portion that you’re asking your child to eat, and finally, try and try again!

It is known that it can take up to 15 or more exposures for the baby to accept a new taste.

How to tackle sweet cravings?

  1. Serve a small treat with your child’s meal (e.g. one cookie / small muffin)
    • Rationale: He may eat it first or only that. Over time, he learns that he will get hungry for other food if he only eats sweet things first
  2. Serve a small treat at the end of the meal regardless of how much your child has eaten
    • Rationale: He will learn that sweet stuff, when eaten in moderate servings, have their place. This also takes away the power of dessert being a big, special reward. In fact, when you avoid negotiating (“if you eat this, you get that”), you eliminate a big power struggle
  3. Best is, eliminate sweets altogether. Instead, try offering fresh fruits or cheese to end the meal

How to feed a fussy eater during illness?

  1. They need extra fluid and soft food in small but frequent portions
  2. Add hydration with oral rehydration salts (ORS), water, juices, and coconut water
  3. Continue breastfeeding if you are breastfeeding
  4. Offer cold foods (yogurt, ice cream, fruits) if your child has ulcers in their mouth

About baby-led weaning

This method of weaning allows babies to control  their consumption / portions of solids by “self-feeding”.  The theory behind this method is that baby will choose foods which he/she is lacking in nutrients, guided by taste.

Advantages:

  1. Improves hand-eye coordination, chewing
  2. Independence
  3. Less stressful for parents

Disadvantages:

  1. Takes time
  2. Baby must be able to sit up
  3. At the start, baby is allowed to reject food but it may be offered again at a later date
  4. Not encouraged if baby is less well developed

 

III. Fun & Yummy Healthy Meals

Recommendation: Introduce nutritionally-adequate and safe complementary (solid) foods at six months together with continued breastfeeding up to two years of age or beyond.

weaning-talk-1Registered Dietitian, Ms. Ng Yee Voon, prepared some baby food recipes for tasting.

weaning-talk-2

Check out our website for organic baby food and snacks, lunch boxes, thermal food jars, feeding spoons, plates, water bottles, etc. Click on the links below to view the brands and items we have in store.

Why is the expiry date so close?

We hear this question a lot! This is one of the most common questions we get about organic and natural baby food. The question you should really be asking is not why is the expiry date so close….but rather, why is the expiry date so far away.

If you think about it, food can be made to last longer by using chemicals and preservatives. So our advice is, do take a good look at the list of ingredients included in any products which you will be giving your babies.

One of the baby food brands we tell our customers about is Organix (www.organix.com) because of their No Junk Promise. Their promise is that there is nothing in their food which cannot be found in any normal kitchen – absolutely no preservatives, no chemicals, always organic and nothing unnecessary.

Take a closer look at the list of ingredients they include in their products. Here’s an example: http://www.babydash.com.my/products/formula-food/food/organix/organix-finger-foods-organic-carrot-sticks-stage-2-from-7-months-20g.html

For a full list of products by Organix, head to:

http://www.babydash.com.my/products/formula-food/food/organix.html?limit=all

http://www.babydash.com.my/products/formula-food/food/organix-goodies.html

12308749_910956595625291_8773501882410655325_n

Cow’s milk? Goat’s milk, Soy milk or Organic milk?

What’s the difference and which should you choose? This is one of the most common questions we get asked. Firstly, we’d like to say breastmilk is obviously the best choice for your baby. But for whatever reason you have had to stop breast-feeding, then it’s time to consider which formula your baby will take to best.

We always tell our customers, each child is different and has their own sensitivities and preferences when it comes to taste.

Baby_food_section_at_Best_Price_smallA common problem found when introducing any milk other than breastmilk to a baby is lactose intolerance, where the baby could experience anything from mild to extreme discomfort (usually flatulence or diarrhea…we’ve even heard about green poo). Lactose intolerance is a common digestive problem where the body is unable to digest lactose, a type of sugar mainly found in milk and dairy products.

Breast milk, cow’s milk and goat’s milk, all contain lactose. The reason why people always say goat’s milk is closer to mother’s milk is because it contains less lactose than cow’s milk and has a similar chemical structure to breastmilk, which may make it a better option for those with mild lactose sensitivities.

Once you have consulted your doctor and are sure that your child is lactose intolerant, some parents have given soy milk formulas to their babies. For those considering soy milk as an option…please note that soy milk is not recommended as substitute milk for babies under six months due to phytoestrogens and its high sugar content.

Another thing to consider is whether your baby is sensitive to cow’s milk protein. We have heard from some parents whose babies are allergic to cow’s milk protein itself but not allergic to lactose. In this case, then goat’s milk would be ok for their babies. Note, babies who are cow’s milk protein allergic are likely to be allergic to soya protein as well.

This brings us to the final type of milk we thought we’d give you a bit of information on. Organic Milk. Organic milk refers to milk from livestock raised according to organic farming methods. So you could have organic cow’s milk or organic goat’s milk but again, in both cases, it would also contain lactose.

The most important thing we can tell you is that, if you have any health concerns, and are concerned about lactose tolerance or any other sensitivities your baby might have, the best thing to do is consult with your health care practitioner.

All the different types of milk and the different milk brands have varied chemical structures and ingredients which may or may not suit your baby.

At Babydash, we have lots of different brands available…call us anytime if you would like to find out more about a particular type/brand of milk.

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