It feels like a lifetime ago when I fell pregnant with Noah but in reality it has only been three years come March. Ever since that red line appeared on my home pregnancy kit I knew how important it was to consume the right nutrients and vitamins for the baby. Not only for their growth then and there but also detrimental for their health and development later in life too. SMA Nutrition is working with medic Dr Ellie Cannon, best known for her weekly health column in the Mail on Sunday, to educate mums further about the importance of protein levels and nutrition in their baby at this time.
I had actually been taking folic acid before I fell pregnant as I had read that it also helps with conception. We did fall pregnant the first month of trying, so who knows, perhaps that helped? Once we had conceived I switched to a highly recommended pregnancy multi vitamin. Not only did I take the vitamins but I also made sure that I was having a healthy and balanced diet full of protein, iron and calcium, but of course I had a naughty treat here and there when the cravings kicked in! (Hello chips and gravy and chocolate milkshake!)
I was lucky that during pregnancy I didn't have to suffer with any morning sickness and didn't have too many problems with my appetite either but I did have low iron levels here and there. I was prescribed iron tablets and also ate as much spinach as I could which seemed to eliminate that problem.
Nutrition for a baby's first 1000 days (from conception to their second birthday) is extremely important and they recommend that you breastfeed for at least 6 months. Protein is one of the key components in breastmilk that helps to ensure healthy growth and development. The protein level in breastmilk decreases as your baby grows, meaning it contains the right quality and quantity of protein to help them grow at a steady rate. We bottle fed Noah and now at 2 years old he drinks cow’s milk. Protein is just as important now than it was when he was newborn and his needs increase and change as he gets older. The correct amount of protein not only supports growth and development but it also decreases the chance of obesity further down the line.
We began our weaning journey a little earlier than recommended as we followed Noah's lead. He snatched a pear from me and started gnawing on it and from then on there's been no stopping him when it comes to food. Once our weaning journey started we didn't let food replace any milk feeds and we were very conscious of making sure he had the correct nutrients.
Noah is now a fully fledged toddler and watching him grow and develop over the last two years has been the most rewarding (and sometimes bitter sweet) moments of my life. He has always been a great eater, from guzzling his milk like a champ to munching through his lunch like a gannet. He's a little foodie, that's for sure and enjoys pretty much anything you put on his plate.
We've teamed up with SMA Nutrition to promote the importance of nutrition and protein in the first 1000 days of our little one's lives. We would like to invite you to ask any questions regarding nutrition, growth or anything else you have in mind below in the comments section. Dr Ellie Cannon will respond to a selection of the questions asked and I will write up a follow up post in the next few weeks.
Do you have any questions that you would like to ask? Feel free to leave them below in the comments. And don’t forget you can also watch a video all about the importance of protein here. Thank you.