If you have ever tasted baby food, you’ve probably noticed how bland and unappetizing it tastes. However, baby food does not have to be tasteless.
You might be surprised by this, but mild spices and certain seasonings are safe to be introduced to your baby as soon as they start taking in solids, usually 6 to 8 months. Spices and seasoning can liven up your baby's food, expanding their palate, while also making an easy transition to family meals. Not only that but spices have numerous health benefits that may be helpful for your little one’s health.
Babies are still growing and their immune system has not yet fully developed. Meaning, they are more susceptible to health complications. That’s why it is important to know what to look for when buying seasoning and how to add it to their food.
1. Go for Low Sodium
Salt is a No-No for babies. Giving your baby salt should be completely avoided before the age of 10 months as they can already get the sodium needed from breast or formula milk. After 10 months, the maximum amount that can be given is 1g per day. It is not recommended to give more than this as their kidneys cannot cope with it.
We recommend using mild spices instead of salt if your baby’s food tastes bland. Low Sodium seasonings such as Love Earth’s Mushroom Seasoning, Baby Garlic Powder & Baby Onion Powder are also great options for 10 months old and above.
2. Avoid Added Sugar
Similarly with salt, added sugar should be avoided. It is safe to start giving sugar at 1 year of age, however, it is recommended to wait until 2 years of age. This applies to all types of sugars and sweeteners, even honey, maple syrup, and stevia.
Sugar also lacks nutrients and contains too many calories. Excess sugar has been found to increase the risk of obesity, type 2 diabetes, and dental caries. Avoiding sugar during these times can help your baby get used to natural foods such as fruits and vegetables.
3. Opt for Pure and Unprocessed Seasoning
You may find some seasoning with some additives or preservatives. Studies have found that additives interfere with the hormones, growth, and development of children. Therefore it is important to look at food labels and go for pure and unprocessed foods.
Another thing to keep an eye on is heavy metals. Studies have found that even a small amount of heavy metals may be toxic to children, affecting their IQ level. It is important to also buy spices that are already packed in a sealed container rather than in open containers or barrels as they are easily contaminated.
You will not find heavy metals listed on food labels. However, manufacturers need to test this before putting their products on shelves. Do ensure to go for trusted brands and do not hesitate to ask companies for proof.
4. Start Small
This applies to all food, not just seasoning, especially if your baby has just started to eat solids. Use a very tiny amount to allow your baby to get used to different flavors. For seasoning, a pinch is just about enough as you do not want to overpower your food.
5. Use the “4 Days Wait Rule”
This is a simple and effective way to check if your child can tolerate the seasoning. There are possible sensitivity and allergies to certain foods, especially digestive issues such as tummy aches, gas, and diarrhea.
The way to use this method is to introduce a new food, one at a time, 4 days apart. This way, you can keep an eye out for any reactions. If there are no complications after 4 days, then you know it is safe. This is especially crucial if your family has a history of allergies.
Best Seasoning For babies:
|6 months & above||10 months & above|
Written by: Eman Elzayyadi
BSc (Hons) Nutrition with Wellness
Reviewed by: Jasmine Lim
Love Earth Organic Nutritionist
Bachelor of Science Degree in
Dietetics (major) & Food Science (minor)
Iowa State University, USA