There are certain important principles to be aware of when considering how to feed your children. One of them is the issue of digestion. Everywhere you look, you see parents feeding their kids the same kind of foods that they eat themselves. You can walk into any McDonalds and see four-year olds chomping away on hamburgers and hot dogs. But children have not yet developed the kind and strength of digestive enzymes to adequately break down and assimilate hard-to-digest foods. (In fact, neither have many adults!)
Dr. Reams found that the stomach acid and digestive enzymes needed to digest meat, nuts and hard-packed cheese (cheddar, Swiss, etc.) were not strongly present in children until around ten to twelve years old (assuming they were in good health). This is a challenge in today's society, where children are almost universally fed cheese or peanut-butter sandwiches for lunch, and hamburger, chicken, ham, etc., for supper.
But there is another paramount principle in the field of nutrition and human metabolism: Whatever does not help you, hurts you. Good food (if grown right) contains the enzymes and other nutrients necessary to metabolise that particular food, plus extra nutrients for the body to use for building optimal health. When you eat something, your body tries to digest and assimilate it. If your body cannot get the necessary nutrients out of the food (or substance) you have eaten, it will steal from itself to make up for that food's lack. When a child (or an adult) eats something that is lacking in the necessary nutrients, or the nutrients cannot be extracted from that food because it is difficult to digest, the body pays a price. A childhood (or lifetime) spent eating food that causes the body to rob itself of important nutrients will result in significant adult health problems later on (as well as during childhood).
From birth to six months old, the only food that a baby needs is mama's milk. The importance of breast feeding a baby cannot be overemphasized. Not only does the baby receive important nutrients that are not found anywhere else, those nutrients prepare the baby's metabolism to develop in the right way, and to become ready to eventually handle adult food. The baby's immune system is brought into gear, and various other systems within the baby's body are started up.
From six months to one year, the child can be fed solid foods like fruits, vegetables and limited whole grains, but everything should be pureed to a paste, kind of like chewing the food for the baby first, since they don't chew adequately themselves. Also, this food "paste" should be diluted with distilled water so it's a runny paste, easily sippable. Up until one year old, a child's digestion is not strong, and cannot handle food that is at all difficult to digest. You do not need to season a child's food. Do not use salt, pepper, sugar, syrup, etc., to make the food more palatable. Taste is completely a learned or acquired experience. If children never eat salt or sugar, they do not miss them (nor do they need them). Of course, if your child is already accustomed to over-spiced, over-salted and over-sweetened food, you will need to gradually wean them from it, slowly reducing your use of sugar, spices and salt, or replacing them with healthier alternatives. Until five years old, fruit juices should always be diluted in equal parts distilled water. We are talking about unsweetened fruit juices. No child ever needs to drink soda pop, Kool-Aid, fruit drinks (full of sugar), coffee or tea (except no-caffeine herbal). custom bridesmaid wears by handmade
Children are like adults in this respect: they need a wide variety of foods in order to obtain all the nutrients they need. Resist finding a few foods that your child likes, and then feeding him those foods, over and over again. Regularly introduce new foods, prepared in different ways. If you do this from an early age, your child will enjoy and prefer a wide variety of tastes.
If you do not have access to organic milk (cow or goat), preferably unpasteurized, non-fat powdered milk (preferably organic) is an excellent source of easily assimilable calcium, calcium gluconate, a neutral pH calcium which children need. You can add powdered milk to numerous foods and recipes, thereby boosting their (and your) calcium intake. Nowadays, it's a common occurrence to see children with runny noses and wheezy, congested breathing, and it's almost accepted as a normal experience in childhood. But, in fact, if a child is not fed constipating, hard-to-digest foods like whole milk (including 1% or 2%), cheese, butter, peanut butter, etc., these "common" childhood maladies (and a bunch of others) will rarely be seen. Plus, if your children get enough calcium and the rest of the minerals they need as they grow up, they will be highly unlikely to experience dental problems, irrespective of their dental hygiene habits. Cavities are not caused by inadequate tooth brushing and flossing; they are caused by unbalanced biochemistry and mineral deficiencies. In certain primitive societies, tooth and gum problems are almost unknown, yet so are toothbrushes!