Tomatoes For Babies – When to Introduce, Benefits, and Precautions

7 min read

Written by Aparna Hari

Aparna Hari

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.

Tomatoes For Babies

Babies need proper nutrition for healthy growth and development. It is imperative for the parents to carefully choose the fruits and vegetables that must be given to the baby. Tomato is one of the vegetables that are excellent for babies. This fruit is rich in lycopene and vitamin C. It has several benefits making tomatoes for babies a must-add food to their diet.

Tomatoes however are acidic in nature that can result in a reflux, diaper, or mouth rashes. This is a good fruit and babies can have it in different forms. It is equally important to know the correct way to include it in the diet of the babies and even the effect it has on the baby. Apart from this, it is also important to know the right age to give it. Given below are some of the various aspects you will need to know before introducing tomatoes to your infant.

In This Article

Are Tomatoes Safe For Babies?

Babies can eat tomatoes which are in pureed, steamed, mashed, or boiled form. Tomatoes are totally safe for babies as they have ample benefits apart from the fact that they can result in acid reflux. Consumption of tomatoes causes no allergy, but it might result in rashes.

When Can You Introduce Tomatoes to Your Baby?

You can safely introduce tomatoes to your baby once they are ready for solids which is at around the 6th or the 7th month mark. Tomato puree and tomato juice are excellent first food forms of tomato for your little champ. Starting with small quantities is the way to go. Once you see that your baby is comfortable and has accepted this fruit without any issues, you can increase the quantity.

Nutritional Value of Tomatoes

Tomatoes result in numerous benefits for the growth and development of the baby. Studies indicate that the nutritional content is different for the different species of tomatoes. They are a powerhouse of nutrition, and the nutritional value of tomatoes is given in the table below.

Nutrients Value in 100 Grams
Carbohydrate 3.18 grams
Calcium 5 mg
Energy 16 kcal
Fibre 0.9 grams
Protein 1.16 grams
Water 94.78 grams

Amazing Top 4 Health Benefits of Tomatoes For Babies

Health Benefits of Tomatoes For Babies

The great nutritional composition in tomatoes promises a multitude of health benefits for the overall growth of the baby. Some of them are listed as under.

1. A Good Source of Micronutrients

Tomatoes have many nutrients like Vitamin K, magnesium, Vitamin A, choline etc, which is good for building strong bones, nerves, baby’s eyes, and brain as well. It even helps with developing a strong immune system.

2. Keeps Babies Hydrated

Babies who have just started solids need more water to digest all the new foods they are trying out. Their high activity levels also mean that their body will need more water.

Tomatoes are high in water quantity. If you feel your baby may risk dehydration, especially during summers, tomatoes are a good way to keep their water content up.

3. Regulates Digestion

The high flavonoids and dietary fibre contents in tomatoes help boost the digestive health of the baby. It is important to remember that a baby’s digestive system is still developing, and any small disturbance can lead to indigestion, gas, and colic, especially in some babies who are starting on solids. Feeding them tomatoes ensures that they do not face digestive issues as they get used to new solid foods.

[Read : Gas in Babies]

4. Prevents Constipation

Constipation is quite common among babies. At times, a baby can go without pooping for 3 to 4 days at a stretch. Parents who are looking for remedies in such a situation can try feeding tomato puree or tomato juice to their baby in small amounts.

Precautions to Take While Introducing Tomatoes For Babies

Introducing Tomatoes For Babies

It is important for every parent to understand the care and precautions to be taken when introducing any new food to their baby. This will help in safely introducing the food and minimizing risk  factors.

Here are some precautions you must take when introducing tomatoes to your little tot.

  • Always give deskinned tomatoes that are pureed, mashed, boiled, or cooked properly.
  • One teaspoon of mashed, boiled, or pureed tomato is enough for the baby in the early days. Once the baby can digest it well, the quantity can be altered.
  • Remember to follow the three day or five-day rule where no other food apart from tomato should be introduced. This is done to keep a check on the allergies or any other issues with ingestion.
  • It is important to remember to stop giving tomatoes in case the child shows any signs of discomfort.
  • Always consult a child specialist before introducing tomatoes in the diet of the baby.
  • Never give half-cut, peeled or processed tomatoes as it can lead to infections.
  • It is advisable to always use fresh produce of tomatoes to feed the baby not the bruised ones.
  • Always clean tomatoes under fresh water two or three times before using them.

[Read : The 3-Day Wait Rule For Babies To Introduce Solids]

Are There Any Side Effects of Tomatoes For Babies?

Tomatoes are undoubtedly a powerhouse of antioxidants and micro-nutrients, yet acidic in nature so can have some side-effects as well. A few of them are given as below

1 Acid Reflux

Tomatoes have a citric acid reflux action and even have malic acid that leads to acidity. So over consumption can prove harmful to the health of the baby. In babies issues such GERD or Gastroesophageal reflux disease are fairly common in the early years of their life. Talk to your baby’s pediatrician before introducing tomatoes if your baby has any stomach-related issues.

2 Allergies

If the baby is not able to digest the tomato well, it can result in allergies or rashes. It is thus important to undertake a food safety test every time a new food is introduced for the baby. Allergies can be in the form of sneezing, mouth swelling, throat and face swelling, skin rashes, coughing etc.

3. Diarrhea

Babies who develop an allergy to tomatoes can even have other stomach related issues like diarrhea. Diarrhea can also happen due to the presence of salmonella bacteria, so feeding raw tomatoes is a big no-no situation.

Top 4 Healthy and Tasty Tomato Recipes For Babies

tomato juice

Tomatoes are a superfood for the baby and after properly selecting and storing them, it is imperative to also know the right manner of giving them to the babies as per their age. Babies of different ages can have tomatoes in different forms as well.

A few healthy tomato recipes are given below:

1. Tomato Juice

It is one of the best ways to introduce tomatoes to your baby for the first time. For making tomato juice, you can simply add chopped tomato pieces to boiling water, allow the pieces to cook, remove the skin once the pieces are cooked (discard the water), mash the pieces well, pass the mash through a sieve and collect the juice to feed your baby. Do not give more than a teaspoon to start with.

2. Tomato Puree

This is also one of the best ways to introduce tomatoes to your baby. The process is quite simple. It involves washing tomatoes well, deseed and chop them and boil till they are soft, peeling them and pureeing them with some boiled and cooled water to a smooth paste. You can now season this paste with herbs of your choice. Do not add salt and/or sugar if your baby hasn’t celebrated their first birthday.

3. Tomato Soup

This recipe is ideal for grown-up babies who are around 8 months old. To make tomato soup, you can melt some butter in a pan, add seasonings like cumin seeds onion and garlic, add chopped tomatoes and carrot or any other vegetable of your choice, cook everything well, and blend this mixture in a food blender.

You can add boiled and cooled water for a thinner consistency. Sieve this liquid to remove lumps and your tomato soup is ready to serve.  A few babies also start nibbling on small slices by this time so a few well-cooked portions of tomato can be put in the soup as well.

4. Tomato Scrambled Eggs

If your baby is eating finger foods, you can give them scrambled eggs cooked by adding finely chopped tomatoes and other vegetables or herbs of your choice. Ensure that your baby can safely manage to food without choking.

Tomatoes are a powerhouse of nutrition and a part of almost all cuisines. They are full of nutrients and carry ample health benefits but due to their acidic nature, can have side effects as well. So, it is important to take precautions and feed them as per their age and consult a doctor in case of extreme symptoms and even before introducing it.

[Read : Infant Choking]

FAQ’s

1. Are Tomatoes Good For Baby’s Eyes?

Tomatoes have Vitamin A which is good for developing the eyes of the baby. It even has a presence of beta-carotene and alpha-carotene which gives the red color to the tomato and good for developing the immunity and the vision of the baby.

2. Can I Feed My Baby Tomatoes?

Tomato is a super-versatile food which the baby can have in different forms. It is, however, important to know the right way of giving it to the baby and checking its effect on the baby as well.

3. Is Tomato a Poop Friendly Food?

Tomatoes can be given to the baby as soon as they start on solids, which is any time after six months depending on the baby as well. It is poop friendly as it has a lot of dietary fiber that boosts digestive health and prevents constipation as well.

Read Also: Asparagus For Babies – When to Introduce, Benefits and Precautions

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Aparna Hari,MBA in Marketing,P.G. Diploma in Human Resource Management from IGNOU Bachelor of Sciences (Home Science) from Nagarjuna University

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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