Written by Aparna Hari
The fragrance and beauty of the lotus charm us all. But have you ever thought of eating it? You will be surprised to know that almost all of the lotus plant is edible. Even its roots! In South Asian countries lotus root is a popular food for the health benefits associated with it. Lotus root for babies is an excellent source of nutrition and is packed with vital nutrients that you will not want your baby to miss.
Lotus root is a squash-like root vegetable with plenty of therapeutic effects. For its curing properties, it has been used in medicines in China and India since ancient times. Introducing lotus root into your baby’s diet from an early age will make them healthy and immune to several serious diseases. Here are the benefits of lotus root for babies and how to introduce it to your baby.
In This Article
Yes, lotus root is safe and beneficial for babies if you cook them well. It has many nutritional benefits for growing babies. But it is important to cook and serve this root in the right manner. Raw lotus roots can contain parasites that may result in foodborne illness. Proper boiling or cooking before serving to babies is very important. The high fibrous content of the lotus roots can also sometimes upset your baby’s stomach. You must ensure moderation when feeding lotus root to your munchkin.
Also, make sure to make a fine paste or puree of the lotus root for smaller babies as it can cause choking hazards. However, you can provide lotus root chips to babies once they get used to chewing.
Yes, lotus root is very healthy for infants. Vitamins, minerals, and nutrients are all present in lotus roots. It is low in calories and high in fiber and plant protein. Lotus root is also a source of nutrients such as iron, potassium, copper, manganese, zinc and vitamins like vitamin C, vitamin B6, and thiamin. As per FDC, the nutrients present in lotus root per 100 grams are
You can provide lotus roots to babies once they are on solids. So, after 6 months, you can safely introduce lotus root. But as it is rich in fiber, you will need to start by introducing small quantities. Once your baby gets comfortable eating and digesting it, you can slowly increase their intake of this root vegetable.
Lotus root is quite hard. You can introduce it in the form of a well-cooked mash. Once your baby gets comfortable with the basic mash, you can cook lotus root with other veggies to form a mash and then feed it to your munchkin. Older babies can be given lotus chips as finger food.
Here are a few pointers to consider when introducing lotus roots to babies.
Yes, infants can drink lotus root juice. It will be especially beneficial for them during coughs and colds. You can make lotus root juice along with beet and pear for sweetness and a fine smooth texture during monsoon to boost their immunity against coughs and colds.
Though not a mainstream food for infants, lotus root will be extremely beneficial for your baby. Here are the top 5 benefits that your baby can get from lotus root.
[Read : Manganese For Babies]
A daily supply of Vitamin C is important to fight back seasonal flu, cough, and fever. A single serving of lotus root can easily meet up to 80% of your baby’s daily Vitamin C requirement.
Lotus root provides dietary fiber to the intestine. Thus, it aids in the production of good bacteria that helps in digestion. Moreover, fiber prevents obesity by blocking the digestion of carbohydrates.
Manganese present in lotus roots keeps the heart healthy and iron ensures proper production and circulation of blood. Proper flow of oxygenated blood all over the body is important to keep your baby healthy and energetic.
Lotus root also contains vitamin B. According to the report published in Oxford Academic, vitamin B or pyridoxine works as a neural receptor for the brain. Thus, indirectly lotus root can help your baby’s brain to act quickly and smartly.
Start your baby with a small quantity of lotus root mash. Do not introduce any other new food to your baby that day. This will let you know if your baby is allergic to lotus roots or not. If everything is alright then you can gradually add lotus roots to your baby’s daily diet.
As lotus roots never fully soften no matter how much you boil, you can paste it on the mixture grinder before offering it to your baby. You can also make lotus root soup and juice for your baby.
Lotus roots have a distinctly sweet and muddy flavor which your baby may or may not like. Depending on their reactions you will have to decide how to offer lotus root to your baby next time.
Once your baby is ready for finger foods, you can offer a very thin slice of peeled and boiled lotus root as finger food to your baby.
You later give them steamed lotus root pieces and baked lotus root chips.
Lotus root is a very nutritious root vegetable for infants. But it can also cause side effects. We list most common side effects that babies may experience when they eat lotus root for the first time.
According to a study published in ResearchGate, allergic reactions can occur due to lotus roots in individuals with oral allergy syndrome. Allergic reactions may include mild itching, fever, bad breath, burning in the mouth, and liver issues.
In small infants, lotus root can be hard to digest and can cause diarrhea. The high fiber content can cause younger babies to experience digestion problems.
[Read : Diarrhea in Babies]
Raw lotus roots may contain parasites and its consumption can lead to parasitic infections in babies. Parasitic infection can cause several complications including skin rashes, intestinal obstruction, fever, vomiting, stomach pain, diarrhea, etc. To avoid this, always let your baby eat only well-cooked or well-steamed lotus roots, and avoid giving them raw roots.
Lotus roots for babies are extremely beneficial in their growth years. Early introduction of lotus roots may help avoid allergic reactions. But you need to be cautious about the choking hazards related to these types of fibrous food. Be present in front of your baby when they eat and only provide them with lotus root chips once they can properly chew.
Lotus root contains a huge amount of soluble fiber which is good for the digestive system and bowel movement. But the underdeveloped digestive system of a baby can find it difficult to digest sometimes. Thus, lotus roots though aid in digestion can be difficult to digest if taken excessively.
Lotus root is more important for its therapeutic effects rather than its culinary delicacies. Lotus root can effectively reduce inflammation, coughs, and flu, protect the heart and liver, and manage childhood obesity as well as diabetes.
Read Also: Arrowroot For Babies
Her experience in impactful writing combined with her background in Home Sciences makes Aparna the perfect candidate for content writing in the pregnancy and parenting niche.Read more.
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