When your baby is two years old, you can start feeding it whole fresh fruits and vegetables, in addition to breast milk. This transition period can be a difficult time, and I would like to share with you my experiences that I have had with our two children.
First, let’s review some very important rules to follow that are covered in Dr. Shelton’s book, The Hygienic Care of Children. It is important for you to understand that you cannot decide what food you would like your children to have; you must feed them foods that agree with them and keep them healthy. Some important basic rules, including food combining rules which are covered in Dr. Shelton’s book, are worth repeating:
- Feed the child natural, that is uncooked, unprocessed, unsterilized, unadulterated, undrugged foods.
- Do not stuff the child. Feed it three moderate meals a day.
- Feed simple meals. Do not feed foods that are mixed in such a way as to cause fermentation.
- Do not feed between meals, nor at night.
- If the child is upset, or feels bad, or is excited or tired, or overheated or chilled, or in pain or distress, or is sick, don’t feed it; if there is fever, give no food.
- Do not feed the child cooked fruit.
And here are the food combining rules:
- Do not feed acid fruits and starch foods together.
- Do not feed acids with proteins.
- Do not feed sweet fruits and acid (sour) fruits together.
- Do not feed sugars or starches with protein foods.
- Do not feed sweet foods with starch foods.
- Feed only one protein at a time.
- Feed fresh milk alone.
- Feed plenty of green vegetables with both starches and proteins.
- Do not feed butter, oil or other fats with protein foods.
Both my children were nursed; one until the age of two, and the other for only one year. Therefore, neither child was on breast milk during the transition feeding period at two to three years old.
The schedule that your child is on around the age of two, if fed Hygienically is milk, juice, milk, juice, milk. To start the transition to adult foods, the first juice feeding in the morning can be dropped, and the child can be given fresh, whole fruits combined well. At first, I gave my children only one kind of fruit. Now I give them only two kinds of fruit at one meal.
You may have started your child on this morning fruit feeding earlier than at two years of age. The fruits that my children digested well before two years of age were blueberries, any kind of melon, papaya, pears, oranges, grapefruit, mangoes, fresh figs, apricots, and plums. They also digested well any other berry fruit, like strawberries, raspberries, and any other wild berry.
Here in Ogden Dunes, Indiana, we have a lot of wild berries growing, and our family has a fun outing looking for these and picking them. We always go berry picking around ten in the morning, so the children can eat their meal right from the bush or tree. You can’t expect to take children berry picking without them eating the delicious fruit!
Fruits that my children did not digest at first were apples, bananas, cherries, grapes, and the sweet dried fruits. Both children had problems digesting bananas and apples in their early years. I did not feed them cherries because of the pit, and I did not feed them grapes because of the seeds. (The “peel” around grapes is not chewed well enough by a toddler and usually comes out whole in their stools.)
Even if the grapes were seedless, for some reason the children did not digest them well in their early years. Now, of course, my five-year-old Jacquie digests all of these fruits very well. But I still stay away from the concentrated sweet dried fruits, such as raisins, dates, dried figs, and prunes. If there is fresh fruit at the market, which is usually true most of the year, I but it in preference to the dried fruit.
The best way to tell whether your child is digesting a food is to check its stools. If chunks of the food are coming out, then you know the child is not digesting that particular food, or is not chewing it well.
When your child is between the ages of one and two, I feel you can try it on the pulpy fruits. If the child does not do well with them, then put it back on the juice. When I first introduced fruit to my children, I introduced one fruit at a time. I found it was better if I gave them two oranges rather than two kinds of fruit at the same time. Papaya is quite a rich fruit, and one half of one is enough for any child.
The overfeeding of fruit will cause digestive problems of protein foods. I also discovered that if I overfed my children fruit, they would break out in skin eruptions. I fed the fruit to my children between 10 a.m. and 11:00 a.m. It always depended on their waking hour. My son, Donny, awakes at 7:30 or 8:00 a.m. so I do not feed him the fruit meal until 11:00 a.m.
Now that Donny is over two, I give him a more substantial lunch at 11:00 or 11:30 a.m. and totally skip the noon milk feeding. When a more complete lunch is given the milk is not needed and, if fed after such a large lunch, can cause health problems. Here are some suggested larger lunch meals:
|two oranges (small)||pears|
|2 fresh figs||blueberries (1 good-sized bowl)|
|romaine lettuce||bibb lettuce|
|red-leaf lettuce||brocccli leaves and stems|
At 1:30 or 2:00 p.m. both children nap. My five-year-old daughter is the only among her friends, who still takes a nap. I have seen the other children in the afternoon, and they are tired too. But they cannot lie down and rest peacefully because of poor diet consisting of meats, starches, and sugared products. And those poor moms have a long day with their children, with no time to rest themselves.
My children and I rest every day—the children nap for two hours. And it is a wonderful break in the day for me. These other mothers must be exhausted tending their children all day. I talked to one mother whose son is only three years old. He gets up at 6:00 a.m., does not nap, and goes to bed at 8:00 in the evening. Of course, when the child gets fussy, he is fed, and this makes it impossible for him to even rest because his digestive system is constantly overworking. By the way, this child has already had some serious health problems—such as constant cold and bronchial pneumonia last year.
Learn more about pregnancy
When my children awake around 4 o’clock, I feed them a vegetable dinner. When you make the transition diet, use only raw foods. My children did better on raw foods. They eat less, chew better, and it lasts longer. They seem to overeat on the cooked foods and swallow without masticating properly. Cooked broccoli will slide down a lot easier than when it’s raw. Also, the child may develop digestive problems from overeating cooked food. I found that cooked food came out undigested more often than the raw food.
It is good to try nuts. Pine nuts are very easily digested. They are the softest nut I have found, and the children do very well with them. Raw cashews were difficult for my children to digest. My children also do well with pecans and walnuts. Almonds are quite hard and not as easy for them to chew. Of course, my five-year-old now can digest almonds. Here are some suggested vegetable meals:
|string beans||green pepper|
A nice starch meal can be given in the evening, as you can see, with baked squash. We use yams, Irish potatoes, and squash.
If you find that the child is starting to get sick, put it back on the juice schedule or a fast until it’s back to normal. If the child gets sick from overeating or from experimenting with the diet, then of course you will have to fast it. Short fasts should be sufficient for any child who has been reared Hygienically.
The dividends are high when you bring up your children this way. They are healthy, happy, alert, beautiful to look at, and certainly your home life is less stressful because your children are not fussy and constantly crying. Do not cheat from this diet. You and your child will pay the price. Stick to the schedule. You can do anything you want around a well-organized schedule.