Oranges, tangerines, mandarins, lemons, limes, grapefruit, etc. are citrus fruits, and have a high acid content. It is advisable to avoid very acidic foods until baby reaches 12 months of age, as they often cause tummy upsets, nappy rash, and other skin rashes – particularly around the mouth. These are not allergic reactions, rather reactions to the acids.
Using the ‘4 Day Rule’ will be particularly helpful when introducing citrus, especially if there is any family history of sensitivity. Don’t worry too much, however, about using one or two drops of lemon juice to preserve colour when preparing foods that are prone to oxidisation.
Citrus fruits are good for baby (and you)
Oranges, tangerines and mandarins are the sweet citrus fruits and are delicious as well as nutritious. All citrus fruits are rich sources of vitamin C – important for the maintenance of bones, blood vessels and muscle – and high in fibre as well as other vitamins, minerals and nutrients. Freshly squeezed orange juice is a refreshing, healthy drink – though some nutritional value is lost, mainly fibre content.
Tips on Buying and Storing:
- Avoid discoloured fruit, or fruit that is too soft.
- Wash well – even though you are going to peel the fruit – and store in a refrigerator or a cool place.
- Squeeze, strain and freeze juice in serving amounts.
Tips on cooking
- Nutritionally, oranges are best served raw.
- Cook carrots, sweet potato or pumpkin with some orange juice to give a different flavour.
Ideas for ways of including citrus fruits in your baby’s meals
- Add orange juice or pulp to mashed avocado, blueberries, cranberries, peaches, or sweet potato.
- Baste chicken with orange juice as it is cooking.
- Mix orange juice or pulp with yogurt – freeze for healthy ‘ice-pops.’
Please remember: Always consult your baby’s paediatrician or doctor about introducing new foods.
This information presented to you acts as a guide which contains researched information only and is not intended to replace advice from a qualified health professional.
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