What are the differences in nutritional needs between infant boys and girls

Irrespective of your infant’s age and gender, each individual child may have specific nutritional requirements. You should therefore consult your child’s pediatrician about any specific nutritional requirements your child may have before deciding upon his/her diet. An adequate amount of nutrition is necessary for your infant through all stages of his/her life. While your infant is in the womb, it is fed passively through the placenta. After the umbilical cord is cut, your infant derives nutrition mainly from breast milk and infant formula. As your child’s weight increases however, his/her nutritional and calorific intake will also increase. Similarly, as your child’s activity or mobility increases, he/she will require a greater calorific intake. For the first six months, a healthy infant obtains the majority of his/her calories from fats. Omega 3 and omega 6 fatty acids are very important for your infant as they help with the development of the retina of the eye, the nervous system, brain tissue and cell membranes. Infants who are born with a very low birth weight will require specialized diets to ensure that their growth and development continues at a normal rate.

A specialized diet is thus important for your infant and it is necessary to assess his/her individual nutritional requirements. For instance, infants generally lose much more water through evaporation and urination when compared to adults. This increases their risk of dehydration and it is therefore important to make sure you include a diet that would keep your infant well hydrated. An excess of protein in your infant’s diet could lead to dehydration. Other things to keep in mind while deciding on your infant’s diet include ensuring an adequate amount of calcium and iron in their diet. Your child requires an adequate amount of iron in his/her diet. In addition, toddlers who are between 1 and 3 years of age require at least 500 milligrams of calcium everyday. In addition, after the age of three, your toddler requires dietary fiber in his/her diet to ensure immunity against diseases. Avoid feeding your infant citrus fruits and juices, honey, eggs and cow’s milk before he/she is past one year of age. Infants should not be fed peanuts, seafood or tree nuts before they are three years old. Infants require similar kind of nutrients as adults. They require an adequate supply of carbohydrates, minerals, vitamins, fat and protein. What is specific to children is that their nutritional requirements vary at different age groups.

answered by G M

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