When Can Babies Eat Strawberries?

image001 Strawberries are perhaps the most popular berries in the world, with their bright color, beautiful shape and awesome nutritious content. They are known to be rich in vitamins and flavonoids, which are excellent for health. Ironically, they are also responsible for undesirable allergic reactions. Parents should know when babies can eat strawberries and how they can introduce strawberries to babies.

When Can Babies Eat Strawberries?

Strawberries can cause allergic reactions in babies. Experts have varying opinions and guidelines on when these fruits may be introduced in babies’ diet. Some recommend waiting until infants are at least one year old before they start these delightful berries. However, in the US, a report from the American Academy of Pediatrics states that these guidelines have been modified to allow children to eat strawberries from age six month onwards.

Allergic reactions to strawberries are commonly manifested as rashes and itching, especially when the fruit touches the skin around the mouth. Occasionally, however, severe reactions may occur, involving swelling in the throat. Other symptoms include hives in the body and worsening of asthma or eczema.

Skin reaction in response to the acidity of the fruit contributes to the appearance of diaper rash in some babies and is not considered an allergic reaction.

How Can I Introduce Strawberries to Babies?

After knowing when can babies eat strawberries, the next question is how to feed your babies strawberries.

1. Look for Signs That Your Babies Are Ready for Strawberries

Strawberries may be given to babies as a finger food, but you have to make sure they are ready to handle the task. Signs that suggest that a baby is ready to eat solid foods include:

  • Sufficient head control
  • Able to sit with support
  • Exhibit chewing motions
  • Noticeable weight gain
  • Increasing appetite
  • Be curious about what mom is eating

2. Puree Strawberries

Before introducing your baby to eating whole fruits, try giving themmashed fruits. Puree strawberries and add them to oatmeal or pudding. Mash them with avocado to make a fruity treat. You can also combine the berries with other fruits, puree them in a blender, and freeze the mixture into popsicles for a tasty treat.

3. Cut into Small Pieces

Strawberries can cause choking in babies. It is best to either puree them or cut them into tiny pieces. Strawberries tend to be slippery and can slide into your baby's throat before they are chewed completely. As a finger food, cut strawberries into small-sized pieces and continue giving them this way until your infant reaches the age of three.

Please watch this video and get more information about how to cook strawberries for babies:


 4. Wait for Three Days before Introducing Another New Food

As with other new foods, parents must introduce them at least three days apart. This will help them identify what food is possibly causing an allergic reaction. If your baby shows any signs of allergic reaction, consult you’re a pediatrician before introducing strawberries to them.

Frequently Asked Questions about Introducing Strawberries to Babies

1. What Are the Benefits of Introducing Strawberries to Babies?

Strawberries provide plenty of valuable nutrients to babies who are ready to eat them, including the following:

  • vitamins B, C and K
  • folate
  • dietary fiber
  • potassium
  • manganese
  • copper
  • magnesium
  • omega-3 fatty acids
  • phenols

Phenols are compounds that protect our bodies from chronic diseases such as cancer. They help support our immune system and are also good for heart health.

2. How Many Strawberries Can I Introduce to Babies Each Time?

Health experts recommend feeding 6 to 12 months old babies between 1/4 to 1/2 cup of fruit daily. They encourage parents to help babies love eating fruits, which may bring them health benefits later in life, such as reducing their risk of heart disease and cancer. However, babies must not be allowed to eat more fruits than is recommended, because these may displace other important foods that are likewise nutritious, such as vegetables, dairy foods, grains, and foods rich in protein.

3. How Can I Choose and Store Strawberries?

  • Choose strawberries

Strawberries do not last long after you buy them but you should not buy them when they still look green or unripe. These fruits may be available only during certain seasons in your area, so you might want to consider freezing them. It is best to freeze them whole to preserve their vitamin content rather than cutting, mashing, or pureeing them first. You may also want to consider buying organic strawberries because pesticides are usually used in fruits that are grown conventionally.

  • Store strawberries

Wash the fruits and remove their green “caps” that blot them. Dry them with using paper towels. Place the berries in one layer on a baking sheet and put them into the freezer. When frozen, transfer them into a freezer bag and return to the freezer.

You will notice that the strawberries will change in color and texture after freezing. This is unavoidable but you can sprinkle some lemon juice on them to reduce these changes.

4. What Are the Signs of Strawberry Allergy?

The signs and symptoms of strawberry allergy are similar in adults, children and babies. Strawberries can elicit an overactive immune response, which leads to increased histamine release. Histamines can cause signs and symptoms of an allergic reaction in sensitive individuals, especially in babies whose immune systems are still immature. The initial signs of allergy usually appear upon contact with the allergen, and these include:

  • Skin hives, where the strawberry touched the baby
  • Mouth tingling
  • Swelling of the face, lips, tongue, or throat

The next set of symptoms affects the digestive system, producing symptoms like:

  • stomach cramping
  • nausea
  • vomiting
  • diarrhea

Some individuals experience anaphylaxis, a life-threatening severe allergic reaction that causes breathing difficulty and a sudden decrease in blood pressure.

5. What Can I Do If Strawberry Seeds Are Found in Babies’ Diaper?

Strawberry seeds in the babies’ diaper may mean that your babies have trouble digesting the seeds. This is a harmless condition and should not be a cause for alarm.

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