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Eating Out With A Baby

5 min read

Eating out with baby
After spending laborious nine months waiting for the baby, full of restrictions and precautions, it’s but natural to capture a welcome change in the form of outing or dining out! However, it’s not easy to have a gala time with a frail figure in your arms. Unlike you, your baby is not going to be served at the restaurant and may feel uncomfortable in new ambiance. You may also feel skeptical about breastfeeding your baby in public and rather turn down the dinner invite. Read below to counter this dilemma and enjoy your meal:

5 No Stress Tips For Eating Out With The Baby:

You cannot control your baby’s mood or need to fill his tummy, so in addition to praying, be prepared to feed him when dining out. Below are a few tips to ease out your dining experience:

  1. Choose the right place: Choose a baby friendly restaurant and reserve in advance; babies can easily become cranky! Let go of tempting ‘couples’ only’ places that are dim and have crystal all over. Opt for places that have open spaces, some aquariums and plenty of room to walk around. Check if they offer high chairs. Infact it helps if you take a corner table!
  2. Do not deviate from the baby’s eating schedule: Hungry babies are never happy and will not be at peace. To ease this discomfort, you can carry or order a soft boiled egg. If the baby likes something particular to nibble on, do take it with you as well. If your baby has progressed to baby foods such as cereals (Nestle Cerelac or Farex) you can easily order boiled water in the restaurant or carry your own in a thermos and prepare it in a jiffy to counter those untimely hunger pangs
  3. Water Stories: Carry your own boiled water in baby’s bottle or a sippy cup – this water should be boiled and cooled. Do not be influenced by the filtered water of the restaurant. Filters come in varied efficiency and germs and viruses today are very resistant. If you have to order, then opt for branded mineral water
  4. Customized Requests: You can either carry semi-solid food along, if not some restaurants do offer khichdi. You can request them to make non-spicy and softer one for your baby. The same thing can be done for potatoes and cheese
  5. Milk: If possible, pump the breast milk and store it in sterilized bottle, ready to feed! Sterilize the bottle and nipple before leaving home and store carefully – in case he needs water, use your own bottle

The key to dine out with the baby lies in how much you can engage the baby. While waiting for the food take the baby around, and keep her from getting bored. Boredom simply leads to tantrums – and yes, no matter how hard you try, baby will get bored at some point for sure. So you should be mentally prepared for a tantrum, a dirty diaper and some clutter. It is, well, a part of parenting itself.
Baby in restaurant

What Not To Do When Eating Out With A Baby?
  1. Experiment with new foods or even cereals. You never know if he may be allergic to the ingredients of the new stuff. It’s best to stick to the same brand of cereals and pasteurized milk (if already started)!
  2. Feed pre-cut fruit or vegetable as an alternative to suck on and leave you in peace! Cut fruits and vegetables lose their nutritional value quickly, attract germs as well as change their taste. Always feed thoroughly washed, freshly cut fruits only
  3. Forcefully make your baby taste pani puri water or roadside chuski! This might upset his stomach and moreover the hygiene cannot be guaranteed!
  4. Feed fruit juices, milkshakes and lemonades from restaurant. They are definitely made/diluted with water and the hygiene of water may be dodgy!
  5. Feed anything raw, except freshly cut fruits which your baby has sucked on before without any allergic reactions

With baby comes more responsibilities and more is demanded from your body too. Be it carrying your baby and putting him to sleep or breastfeeding! To counter this toll on your body, it’s essential to follow a balanced diet. This might be missed when eating out. Relax, check below for a few healthier eating options with little compromise on taste and experience:
Baby eating out

Eating Out When Breastfeeding

Sure enough, if you have a baby and are breastfeeding her, you are still on the job of nourishing the little one. Even if eating out, you will need to keep a tab on what you eat. Some tips to ease your dining experience are enlisted below:

  • Multigrain: When eating out, think smart, order multigrain sandwich in Subway or pan/thin crust pizza from Pizza Hut! Feel free to order brown rice, oats and brown rice. Multigrain options are an essential source of carbohydrate and fibre
  • Salads: The best meal! Fresh vegetables and continental varieties are power house of vitamins and nutrients. They detoxify the body. Tip: Don’t miss the salad bowl in Pizza Hut!
  • Lean meat, eggs and pulses: Lay back, relax and order mutton biryani and Doner kebabs or turkey sandwich! They will cater to your daily requirement of protein
  • Fish: You can now relish in the amazing Goan fish curry or Bombay Pomfret Masala! These are power packed with protein and omega 3 fatty acids
  • Yogurt: Yogurt can especially be a good choice as it contains good bacteria to regulate intestinal health and calcium for healthy bones. You can indulge in Greek yogurt, flavored yogurt or plain yogurt; try mishti dahi or plain dahi or even fruit smoothies
  • Milk: Milk is essential for all the calcium and bones, and it helps your back post-delivery. Enjoy milk in the form of lassi and milkshakes! Sometimes milk may cause allergy in your baby so drink milk in moderation and watch for any signs of allergic reaction. Consult your obstetrician for supplements of calcium and vitamin D. Vitamin D – an essential nutrient is obtained by your baby through breast milk

Food consumed by the mother can seep into the breast milk. Therefore it’s very important to identify if your baby shows signs of allergy such as itching, rashes, redness of skin, swollen eyes, diarrhea, constipation, vomiting or poor appetite after breastfeeding. Below is a general list of food to avoid during breastfeeding:
Baby eating

Foods to Avoid During Breastfeeding
  1. Spicy food: It may cause dehydration and constipation in both you and your baby
  2. Caffeine: Go easy on coffee and tea! Caffeine may make your baby restless and difficult to sleep
  3. Alcohol: Occasional wine is fine, otherwise alcohol may affect baby’s development and your milk supply
    • Feed baby before having alcohol as your blood quickly absorbs alcohol and reaches its peak 30-90 minutes after drinking
    • Or feed 2-3 hours after drinking, by this time the alcohol levels should have gone down
    • Skip alcohol, if you have a newborn as he might need very frequent feeds
  4. Herbal teas: Truth is the very attractive Green Tea, Chamomile Tea, Strawberry tea, flower teas all contain caffeine. In addition to this how your baby’s body reacts to certain ingredients such as chamomile or rose hip is unknown and not worth the risk!
  5. Excessive fatty foods: Post delivery you may already be striving to get back in shape and therefore avoid fats totally. Which is also wrong! On the other hand, some might crave for more calories. Avoid foodstuffs such as deep fried fries and patties. Remember, excess of everything is bad!

Some foods are known to cause colic in breast fed babies. Read on to know more here.
In addition to this, avoid stress, have adequate rest, sleep and eat well for healthy breastfeeding experience.

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