Most of pediatrics around the word emphases that parents do not need to use water or tea for their babies during 6 months of life. The breast milk (also look at Breastfeeding and milk supply ) or formula milk has all what babies’ body need. But when you start solid food feeding process for your infants, they need to drink boiled water in small portions. What can you do about tea? The researches about good parenting has shown that during six first months of baby’s life mothers are in dilemma if they can use calm herbs for their babies or no? Sometimes during the colic’s pain mothers try to calm their babies with chamomile tea. Is this okay?
The pediatric studies emphases that tea or herbs allows to use for toddlers from four age and up. Why? Because tea or herbs can install anemia in infants.
But let we see that what the expert says about the tea drinking in toddlers. Child nutritionist Sarah Almond Bushell tells that from the age of 4 children can safely drink 1-2 cups of unsweetened weak tea brewed from tea bags each day. Although tea does contain caffeine, it’s in in lesser amounts and so is not as detrimental as coffee.
Although tea does contain caffeine, it’s in in lesser amounts and so is not as detrimental as coffee.
- “Tea also contains tannins which inhibit the absorption of iron from non-meat sources. Iron is one of the critical nutrients required during childhood for growth – particularly brain growth,” she adds.
- “Not getting enough iron is linked to tiredness but also more worryingly can have an impact on behavior and intellect because it is used to transport oxygen to the developing brain.
- “Therefore to prevent poor iron absorption, tea should be consumed in between meals rather than with food.”
Herbal teas are made from the leaves, roots, and seeds of plants. They don’t usually contain caffeine. You can buy them individually as loose leaf tea or in bags. Bagged teas often include more than one type of herb, which is why it’s important to look closely at the ingredient list.
Some herbs, such as chamomile, have been deemed safe for infants and young children. Others like red clover are either dangerous or in a grey area. Read labels so you know everything your child is sipping.
Allergies are another concern. Some people, including children, may be allergic to the herbs in tea. Signs of an allergic reaction include trouble breathing and swelling of the throat, lips, tongue, and face. Scary stuff! If you suspect a possible allergic reaction or have other concerns in this area, contact your child’s healthcare provider.
Researchers share that herbal remedies like tea containing the following are generally safe for children:
If you decide to look for teas containing these herbs or others, make sure they’re not mixed with unfamiliar ingredients and that the tea bag explicitly states it’s caffeine-free.
How to prepare tea for your toddler
You’ll likely come across a range of suggestions regarding the amount of tea to steep, so try asking your healthcare provider for guidance if you’re unsure about how much is too much. Otherwise, there isn’t a huge difference between preparing tea for an adult and a younger child. What you’ll want to remember is that toddlers and young kids generally prefer tea that’s weaker and cooler.
- Always read all the ingredients on the label. Some teas may combine more than one type of herb.
- Alternatively, you may consider using a small amount — a few teaspoons to a tablespoon — of loose leaf in a tea infuser instead of store-bought tea bags.
- Only steep your child’s tea bag for 2 to 4 minutes (maximum) in boiling water.
- If you still feel the tea is too strong, consider diluting it with additional warm water.
- Wait until the tea water is room temperature or only lukewarm. This is similar to the temperature you may have aimed for while preparing bottles when your child was a baby.
- You may consider adding a teaspoon or so of honey to tea, but don’t add too much or other sugars, as sugar is generally not recommended for young children due to the risk of tooth decay. And never offer honey to children under 12 months old due to the risk of botulism.
- Stick to just 1 to 3 cups of tea per day. Too much tea (or water) can lead to water intoxication or overexposure to herbs.