Older babies and toddlers are very busy little people, and that means eating can take second place to learning and growing. To ensure that your little one is getting all the nutrition she needs, feed her a diet rich in fresh fruits and vegetables, whole grains, and healthy proteins. And, for really busy babies, try foods that pack the maximum nutritional punch, like whole milk plain yogurt. Full of essential nutrients, including lots of calcium and protein, this super food will give your baby the fuel she needs to grow, explore, and learn about her world.
Calcium 1 of 5Calcium is essential for healthy bone development, and babies and toddlers need at least 700 mg a day. Recent studies have even shown that calcium intake, even as an embryo, can have major effects on overall bone health. A 4 oz. serving of plain, whole milk yogurt serves up 25% of baby's daily calcium need.â€¨
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Image: Keith Weller/USDA
Phosphorus 2 of 5Phosphorus is a mineral that aids in bone development, and older babies need about 275 mg a day. Phosphorus also helps with energy production and storage, and tissue and cell repair. Since calcium and vitamin D aid in phosphorus absorption, yogurt is a great source. A 4 oz. serving of yogurt will provide roughly half of baby's daily phosphorus need.â€¨
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Image: Gray's Anatomy
Protein 3 of 5Protein is essential for energy, muscle development, and brain function, and since it can be tough to get busy older babies to sit still and eat, protein-rich yogurt is a great way to make sure baby is getting the nutrition she needs. A 4 oz. serving of yogurt will provide a third of baby's daily protein need.
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Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin) 4 of 5Riboflavin helps in the repair and maintenance of skin, hair, and eyes, and helps the body to absorb and metabolize other nutrients. A 4 oz. serving of yogurt will provide about half of baby's daily riboflavin need.
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Image: The cutest baby in the world (aka my 8 month old)
Potassium 5 of 5Think potassium only comes from bananas? Think again! Yogurt contains plenty of this essential nutrient, which works to maintain a healthy blood pressure, boosts muscle development, and helps with heart rhythm. A 4 oz. serving of yogurt can provide roughly a third of baby's daily potassium need.â€¨
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For more on feeding baby, check out First Foods: 25 Homemade Baby Food Recipes and Ideas, 10 Great Reasons to Eat Yogurt, and Drink Your Yogurt: 7 Cool and Creamy Smoothie Recipes.
Image: Keith Weller/USDA
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