From the start of diversification, baby can begin to discover yogurts. If they should not replace breast milk or second age milk, they help to awaken baby to new textures and new flavors.
Until the age of 5 or 6 months, baby feeds only on infant milk or breast milk. At 5 months, he drinks about 210 ml of milk per bottle, and will gradually discover fruits, vegetables, cereals. An important step in its development! Many parents then wonder about the place that dairy products should take in this diversification.
What type of yogurt to give to baby?
From the age of 6 months, babies can eat “special baby” dairy products, which have a reduced protein content and which are enriched with iron and essential fatty acids. If they exist in the fresh section, they are also available in long-life presentation, practical to take on a walk. “The advantage of these baby yogurts is their more velvety texture, thanks to the presence of rice starch or corn starch“, explains the dietitian. As the latter reminds us, these yogurts must not be sweetened. “Sugar has no nutritional value. Milk already contains a natural sugar, galactose, which baby already perceives as a sweet taste.“, she explains.
Cow’s milk yogurt: at what age?
If it is preferable to prefer yogurts with infant milk up to the age of 7 months, baby can then eat classic yogurts made from whole cow’s milk. “Yoghurts, petit-suisses, white cheeses, all forms are possible”, explains Magali Le Mardeley.
How much yogurt to give baby?
“When we start to diversify, we try to be 4 dairy products per dayA: in the morning, at noon, at snack time and in the evening. The snack bottle can be replaced by a yoghurt. At noon, either the child takes a bottle with his puree, or the bottle is also replaced by a large dairy product“, explains the professional. As with any new texture, you can obviously start with just a few spoons so that baby gets used to it.
Organic baby yogurt: to be preferred when possible!
There is no obligation to give organic yogurt to a baby. There are also yogurts with organic infant milk, but while organic products are obviously always a good idea, they are also more expensive than conventional yogurts. There is therefore no point in parents adding additional stress or guilt to themselves.
Homemade yogurt: can you give it to baby?
From the moment the baby is diversified and old enough to eat classic cow’s milk yogurts, it is quite possible to give him yogurts prepared at home with only whole milk and ferments. “When baby grows we can start adding red fruits, honey or a little sugar to his yogurt or cottage cheese. Added sugar is a pleasure food and does not meet a physiological need. Especially since we now know the link between childhood obesity and early consumption of sweet products.“, explains the dietitian. “IYou should also keep in mind that a homemade yogurt or a plain yogurt to which sugar is added will always be less sweet than a commercially sweetened yogurt”she adds.
Babies allergic to cow’s milk proteins: which yogurt to choose?
It is important to remember that a cow’s milk protein allergy (CMPA) is different from lactose intolerance. If a baby is really allergic, he cannot consume dairy products and must therefore turn to other desserts based on “milk” (we speak today rather of drink) of rice or almonds for example. There are formulas specially adapted for babies and enriched with proteins, but also, from the Picot brand, a range of desserts and creams without milk. Beware, however, of goat’s milk or sheep’s milk yoghurts because there are often cross allergies.
Lactose intolerance is extremely rare in babies and occurs rather when the child is older, with symptoms that are essentially digestive and are disproportionate to those of a real allergy that can lead to anaphylactic shock.
Thanks to Magali Le Mardeley, dietitian nutritionist