Fox nuts/ Makhanas or Lotus seeds as it is referred to, comes with a good source of nutritional value in comparison with other dry fruits such as almonds, walnuts, and cashews. That is why many parents prefer to offer Makhanas to babies.
With a pretty popular usage in India, roasted Makhana for babies is one of the common snacks to which the babies are introduced. With a dense calorie, it can easily make your baby’s tummy full in no time.
These are readily available at grocery shops or retail stores. We recommend you to make use of it by introducing it to your baby’s diet.
Is Makhana Safe For Babies?
The nutrient value in Makhana makes it a safe food for babies. It is also a versatile food with which you can make many varieties. You can introduce this food to the baby, once they turn six months. Make sure to split into pieces for toddlers.
As an easy to make food for babies with no teeth, start with small quantities like Makhana powder with milk or Makhana porridge. Keep an eye on the side effects if any. Once your baby is accustomed to the food, you may give it regularly.
When can we introduce Makhana for babies?
The right time to introduce Makhana for babies is after six months. By this time, the baby should have started consuming semi-solids.
Makhana is rich in protein and calcium and hence helps strengthen the baby’s bones and muscles. Hence, introduce it in small quantities. Also, check for any allergy or intolerance before making it a routine food.
For older babies who can chew and eat, it is best to offer roasted Makhana as their evening snack. However, offer them in limited quantity during summer times as they are prone to increase body heat.
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How to offer Makhana for babies?
Makhana can be offered either as a chewable food like a fried or roasted Makhana or in a powdered form, in case the baby is unable to chew. Make sure to split them into two pieces for toddlers as it might cause choking hazards.
Makhana comes with a good amount of fiber which helps keep babies’ excretion healthy. Offer it as a cereal powder for babies who have just completed six months as it is easy to carry when you travel.
8 Benefits Of Makhana For Babies
The diverse nutritional value in Makhana for babies is dense. Apart from it, Makhana is a safe and versatile food for babies. Regular consumption of Makhana for babies is beneficial in the following ways which sustain in the long run.
Since Makhana is one of the power-packed foods, which is nothing short of a good amount of nutrients, it should be included in your baby’s diet to reap its benefit to the fullest. Listed below are the benefits of Makhanas for babies.
1. High source of protein and calcium
Makhanas are a good source of protein and calcium. They easily make your baby’s tummy full and the calcium present in it can help in the development of the baby’s teeth and bones.
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2. Gluten-free food
Makhanas are gluten-free foods. This implies that the allergic reaction to your baby post consuming is very less. They are low in calories as well.
3. Healthy weight gain
Makhanas promote healthy weight gain in babies without overfeeding your little ones. Taking Makhana keeps the baby energetic and active.
4. Rich in minerals
Makhanas come with a good amount of potassium and magnesium. Consuming this regularly is good for the heart. It is also good for children who are obese.
5. Good amount of antioxidants
Antioxidants are required for maintaining good health conditions in babies. Makhanas are loaded with a good number of antioxidants that help babies grow healthy.
6. Prevents inflammation
Makhanas for babies help to prevent inflammation. As stated, it’s antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties makes it an excellent food for chronic inflammation.
7. Promotes good sleep
Components such as flavonoids, alkaloids, and saponins present in Makhanas help to promote good sleep in babies.
8. Detox Property
Makhana comes with a great detoxifying property. It helps remove the toxins from the body. Makhana is also important for the spleen.
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3 Easy Ways To Feed Makhana To Babies
Makhana for babies is one of the most commonly used ingredients in India. This nutritional snack can be munched in at any time of a day. Makhana for babies is much better than going in for processed food.
Makhana comes with a high level of magnesium content that helps in curing diseases quickly. This can be consumed both in raw and in a cooked form.
If you are wondering how to make Makhana for babies, here we come with a few worthy options.
1. Makhana porridge for babies
- Make sure the seeds are of good quality. Remove the blackheads from seeds, if any
- Split the seeds into two halves and check for fungal growth, if any
- In a hot Tawa, fry the broken seeds for about 10 to 15 minutes until super crisp
- Check for the crispness and switch off the heat. Too much frying may give it a charred smell
- Transfer the seeds into a mixer jar and grind as two portions. The texture needs to be coarse
- The mix is ready and can be served in sweet and savory form
Savory Makhana porridge for babies
- Add roasted powdered jeera or desired spice along with the Makhana porridge for babies
- Gently mix with hot water without any lumps
- You can add ghee for enhanced taste
Sweet Makhana porridge for babies
- Add hot water with two spoons of Makhana powder and mix without lumps. To get sweetened flavor, add ripened fruits such as bananas
- One can add Makhana powder with milk along with one spoon of sugar for babies above one year
You can also mix the Makhana porridge for babies with cold/normal water in case you don’t get hot water. Ensure there are no lumps while mixing.
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2. Makhana Sooji kheer
Makhana Sooji can be prepared in the form of Kheer/Payasam. This dessert will be loved by kids owing to its unique taste.
- Dry roast Makhana and Sooji, one spoon each. You may use ghee to get the enhanced flavor
- Grind the above into a coarse powder
- Add this powder to hot milk and add a little cardamom powder. Use jaggery to get the sweet flavor
- You can add any dry fruit powder to make it richer and tastier
3. Roasted Makhana for babies
- In a hot Tawa, add one spoon of ghee and add Makhana and fry until crunchy
- Season it with salt and pepper
- You can also replace the seasoning as desired
- Serve immediately or store in an airtight container
- Remember to offer this food only to kids who can chew the food well
Precautions And Risks Of Feeding Makhana For Babies
Makhana for babies can be offered in powdered porridge form or a roasted form. This highly nutritious nut comes with a lot of medicinal value. Yet, many moms worry about the Makhana side effects for babies.
Yes, there are a few things that you need to consider before offering Makhanas to babies. While there are so many benefits of offering Makhanas to babies, let us see how to incorporate this healthy snack food into your baby’s diet without any complications.
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Risks of feeding Makhanas
- Offering too many Makhana snacks for babies can lead to bloating or gas
- Eating too much Makhana can lead to constipation, owing to its fiber content
- Makhanas could cause allergic reactions in a few. Always follow the wait rule of 5 days to ensure your baby is accustomed to the food
Precautions for feeding Makhanas
- Makhanas need to be cut into small pieces for small babies. Giving wholesome might cause choking hazards
- Go for organic brands as they are free from chemicals
- Check for damaged seeds during purchase and also while cooking baby food. There could be worms and other contaminants
- Always look for the manufacturing and the expiration date on the packet
- Store Makhana snacks for babies in an airtight container. Exposure to moisture can turn it soggy
Makhanas are available in different forms. Always keep in mind the precautions mentioned above before offering them to your baby. Also, remember to feed age-appropriate quantities to the baby.
Makhana can be added to different baby foods in forms like powder, roasted or cooked form. Just keep in mind not to overfeed this dense food to your baby.
Makhana for babies comes with a good amount of fiber which keeps the baby’s bowel movement healthy. The high fiber content helps to improve the digestive system. However, there are chances of constipation when too much fiber is consumed.
Too much Makhana intake could cause problems like bloating and gas issues with babies. This seed is also gluten-free which means the food is suitable for all kids, even for the kids who are intolerant to gluten.
Makhana for babies can be introduced anytime once the baby completes six months. It is advised to start with small portions initially to check for intolerance or allergic reactions, if any.
This healthy seed could make wonders if included as a part of your baby’s regular diet. However, it is advised to offer Makhana in moderation to babies. The dense fiber present keeps your baby’s tummy full.