When your baby is ready to expand his diet from breast milk or formula, what is the best thing to
Very simple. Egg yolk.
It happens to be better than the traditional cream of rice or oatmeal. The yellow stuff is superior
on all accounts, and here is why:
- Egg yolk is very fatty and has a lot of cholesterol, which is what breast milk mainly consists of saturated, cholesterol-rich fat. In fact, the cholesterol in human milk supplies your baby with close to six times the amount most adults consume from food. Why add more fat and cholesterol if he is already getting enough? Because when you start adding other things into your baby’s diet, his need for your milk or formula decreases. By the way, egg yolk is nutritionally far more superior than formula, so if you are formula feeding your baby, then definitely consider adding the yolk to the bottle (I supplemented my daughter with formula and started her on the egg yolk at 4 months).
- All this saturated, cholesterol rich fat + choline + Omega 3’s are all extremely nourishing for your baby’s brain and the entire nervous system. It is precisely the cholesterol that wraps itself around the neurons without which we simply cannot function properly. Your baby’s brain is growing super-fast in those first five years of life, so the yolk is a perfect source of these brain growing jewels.
- Egg yolk is rich in vitamins A, D, E and K - all the fat soluble vitamins to go with the fat. Plus, it is rich in folate and vitamin B12, both of which are also key to the proper development of the brain and the DNA.
- Because of the fat that’s in the yolk, it is high in calories. And because your baby is going to slowly move away from the breast milk or formula, she needs to replace the calories, which creamed grains cannot provide (unless, of course, you feed your baby a LOT of them, which I don’t recommend).
- Egg yolk makes a perfect transitional solid food because your baby is well equipped to digest the proteins and the fats found in breast milk. He’s been digesting them from birth! You can’t say the same about the grains, which are an entirely different animal when it comes to the nutritional composition (grains = mostly amylose sugar, a carbohydrate).
Speaking of grains, while there is probably nothing wrong with giving your baby a little bit of
creamed rice or oatmeal, it is best to do so in moderation and along with other foods. Plus, you
probably want to start her on grains after one year, when her body is more ready for something
completely different from what she’s been used to.
A few more words of caution about the yolk.
If you are going to go with the yolk, wait until you baby is at least 4 months old.
Give one yolk per day, mixed with breast milk or formula and see if there are any unusual
reactions. If there are, stop the yolk and wait for another month or two to reintroduce.
It’s best to use organic, free-range eggs. If you have access to a farm pastured eggs, that’s
amazing! If not, get the Omega-3 enriched ones, and preferably organic.
Cook the egg just slightly, so the yolk is still runny but the egg has cooked enough for you to
easily separate the white.
How I did it:
I used organic, soy-free eggs from a local farm (perks of living in the egg-farm capital of the
US), but you can buy organic cage-free enriched eggs at your local store. Bring water to a boil, and drop the egg in. Make sure to take the egg out of the fridge a few minutes prior to avoid it from cracking when you immerse it into hot water. Boil for 4 minutes. Remove and place into cold water.
Once chilled, gently crack open the egg, even more gently remove the egg white (it will be
barely solid, more like jello), make an incision with a knife in the yolk (I know I sound like a
surgeon) and let it seep out into a spoon.
If you are feeding it by itself, sprinkle some Celtic Sea salt to add a few extra trace minerals. Plus, it tastes better that way :)
Don’t worry. It sounds complex in the beginning but once you get a hang of it, you’ll be able to do it in no time.
Nutritional effect of including egg yolk in the weaning diet of breast-fed and formula-fed infants:
a randomized controlled trial. American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, Vol. 75, No. 6, 1084-1092,
Jensen RG. Lipids in Human Milk. Lipids 1999;34:1243-1271
https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/egg- allergy/symptoms-causes/syc- 20372115