But starting solid foods too early could lead to problems with overweight or … While commercially prepared infant foods are considered safe, parents should be cautious when preparing homemade baby food, especially baby food that contains vegetables. According to the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), research is limited on the presence of nitrates in commercial baby foods. Greene says that making homemade baby food with a food grinder is far cheaper than buying jarred foods. âInfant Methemoglobinemia: The Role of Dietary Nitrate in Food and Water.â Pediatrics, 2005, 116: 784â786. There is limited information on the nitrate content of commercial infant foods, although the highest concentrations (>100 ppm of nitrate nitrogen) are found in beets, carrots, spinach, squash, and green beans. I just started my 5 months and 2 weeks old efd only baby on organic baby carrots cooked with filtered water, about 1/4 oz a day. Infants who are exposed to high levels of nitrates, usually through contaminated well water, are at risk of serious health complications, including a condition called methemoglobinemia, or blue baby syndrome. The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recently released a clinical report on the risk factors of nitrate poisoning in infants. For this reason, the AAP has determined that babies who eat commercially prepared foods are not at risk of developing nitrate poisoning. Donât mix formula with well water, unless it is known to have low nitrates. Signup now to get Dr. Greene's healing philosophy, insight into medical trends, parenting tips, seasonal highlights, and health news delivered to your inbox every month. And baby food isn’t the only dietary source of nitrates. Since you cannot test for this chemical yourself, itâs safer to use commercially prepared form of these foods.â. I have read that fresh produce keeps well in the fridge for 3 days. This will help prevent babies from developing nitrate poisoning. It is best to freez and just take out 3 days worth of food every 3 days. The official AAP guidelines on nitrates say: âHome-prepared infant foods from vegetables (e.g., spinach, beets, green beans, squash, carrots) should be avoided until infants are 3 months or older.â (Emphasis mine). Tell us who you are! Starting to eat solid foods (like baby cereal and baby food) is an important part of your baby’s development. How to Talk to Your Children About Coronavirus, 6 Strategies to Help Your Children Deal with Stress, Sara Connolly, MD, FAAP, Board Certified Pediatrician. There has only been one reported case of a baby with nitrate problems from home-prepared vegetable foods in the United States. Baby food companies can test for nitrates but mom can’t. By six months, the stomach acidifies, and the risk plummets further. I never even thought about the nitrates in the vegetables I would use to make purees. For this reason, the AAP has determined that babies who eat commercially prepared foods are not at risk of developing nitrate poisoning. The kind of nitrate reaction of concern is a rare form of anemia called methemoglobinemia. Infant methemoglobinemia: the role of dietary nitrate in food and water. Statement by the American Academy of Pediatrics In 2005, the American Academy of Pediatrics stated that “because the intake of naturally occurring nitrates from foods such as green beans, carrots, squash, spinach, and beets can be as high as or higher than that from well water, these foods should be avoided before three months of age.” Methemoglobinemia in babies is almost always caused by drinking infant formula, not by eating homemade baby food. Greer, F. R., et al. 2. And while it’s great if you want or can make your own food, it’s good to know the commercially available baby foods are just as safe (in fact, they are monitored even more closely for safety and have some of the lowest reported pesticide levels out of the foods tested on the market). Bundoo® is a registered trademark of Interactivation Health Networks, LLC. This is what my book says that i use for making my daughters baby food! 5. I can see both sides of the argument, but I’m going to trust my pediatrician on this one. I found this article very helpful until the final troubling sentence. Nitrates occur naturally in the environment and combine with organic and inorganic compounds. Nitrates are naturally occurring compounds that are used throughout the food and agriculture industries as food preservatives and fertilizers. Refrigerator storage can increase nitrates. We’re adding new products all the time. For this reason, the AAP has determined that babies who eat commercially prepared foods are not at risk of developing nitrate poisoning. Choose organic vegetables, which are grown without synthetic fertilizers. ” … One less thing to worry about! In fact, the most common cause of methemoglobinemia in babies (including those older than 6 months of age) is the ingestion of infant formula made with nitrate-containing well water! To play it safe introduce these foods a … Starting around age 6 months, watch for signs that your baby is ready for solid foods. This reminds me of the message behind the baby food and infant formula ads from when I was young: You canât feed your baby as well as we can. Dusdieker, L. B., et al. Nitrates are mostly a risk to the lingering fetal blood cells that are gone by around three months of age. What if the vegetables or fruits are organic? Infants who consume commercially prepared baby food are not at risk for nitrate poisoning, as these levels are monitored for safety by private industries. Methemoglobinemia is very rare — and some say it’s bunk that commercial baby foods contain fewer nitrates than homemade baby food. These chemicals have leached into ground water and spread into urban areas. Nitrates occur in foods that have been processed and naturally occur in many vegetables. Backyard gardens are not immune, and diligent cleaning does not ensure safety. . But do you really have to worry about nitrate-contaminated baby food? To avoid any nitrate problems in your baby, I suggest that you do the following: 1. NOTE: If you make your own baby food, be aware that home-prepared spinach, beets, green beans, squash, and carrots are not good choices during early infancy. The worried warnings go something like this: âIn some parts of the country, these vegetables contain large amounts of nitrates that can cause an unusual kind of anemia (low blood count) in young infants. I wish these guidelines were more widely repeated. At each of your baby's daily meals, she should be eating about 4 ounces, or the amount in one small jar of strained baby food. Greer FR, Shannon M; American Academy of Pediatrics Committee on Nutrition; American Academy of Pediatrics Committee on Environmental Health. Parents preparing infant formula from well water should speak with their … Reported in 1973. Foodie Tuesday I throw away any refrigerated food older than 2 days! While commercially prepared baby foods containing vegetables most likely contain nitrates, these levels are monitored by manufacturers to ensure that nitrate levels in baby food meet safety standards. 4. Refrigerator storage can increase nitrates? Get Dr. Greene's Wellness Recommendations. Limit giving your baby processed foods that are made for adults and older children. It's the best way to enjoy everything Bundoo. They may contain large amounts of nitrates.