Summer fruit and babies - a delightful mix

One of the joys of an Australian Christmas season is the delicious summer fruit!

Most of us have many fond memories of Christmas cherries, mango and summer strawberries. Such a treat in themselves and of course nutritionally more appealing than the dozens of chocolate santas and candy canes decorating Xmas trees!

Many parents, aunties and grandparents alike simply can’t wait for the little ones in the family to try their first juicy ripe strawberry, or slice of paw paw and to see the look of delight on their chubby little faces!

The good news is there’s no reason why your baby on solid foods can’t try most summer fruits. Ripe soft apricots, paw paw, peaches, mango and nectarines can be introduced once your baby has started solids (sometime around 6 months).Babies just starting solids will need the fruit pureed  or mashed until smooth, but older babies can try a soft fruity slice as a finger food. Make sure you remove fruit skins, and of course remove fruit stones & seeds to make it a safe food for your little one.

Some fruits like strawberries and other berry fruit, pineapple, oranges and kiwifruit are best left until your baby is a little older (Certain fruit may cause upset tummies in young babies- especially if offered raw).

Even if your baby is a little young for fruit like strawberries to be offered raw, supermarket baby foods may include these fruits in products for younger babies because the manufacturing & cooking process prepares the fruit to be more suitable. For example Heinz Apple, Strawberry & Pear pouch is suitable for babies aged 4 months+.

Remember, if baby is offered too much of a new season’s fruit they can have tummy upsets just like adults can! Their digestive systems are still immature and too much fruit can provide a bit too much fibre and this may lead to wind and loose poos. Offer your baby a small amount of a new fruit to begin with, and wait for several days before you introduce another new fruit – just to make sure baby is happy!

Happy summer everybody!