Every parent craves a healthy and strong baby. Many associate ‘healthy’ with big, fat babies. Meanwhile, seeing their babies thin and small, parents feel sad and even inferior because they are always compared.
In fact, on the one hand, fat babies are not always healthy. It is even feared it will develop into obesity. On the other hand, a thin baby does not mean malnutrition. There are things that are determinants of the baby’s weight.
1. Character of the parent’s body
If the mother or both parents are overweight, most likely the child will also be overweight. Environmental and genetic factors have a big influence on this. Babies who have obese mothers have a 50 percent chance to grow fat too.
In addition, the parent’s race also plays a role in the formation of the child’s body character. The family history of both parents also needs to be considered because it will shape what the shape and weight tendencies of the child are like.
2. Birth weight
Babies born with a relatively large size, will not necessarily grow into large adults later. Vice versa. However, the birth weight of the baby will affect the health of children in the future.
Babies born with ideal body weight, not too big or small, are those born to mothers who are pregnant with the appropriate weight.
According to the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists , pregnant women who are underweight when pregnant, must increase their weight between 12.7 kg to 18.14 kg. Pregnant women with an average weight should add between 11.3 kg to 15.9 kg. While pregnant women who are overweight, it is advisable to gain weight between 4.9 kg to 9.07 kg.
3. Growth curve
It’s useless if you compare your baby with peers. A four-month-old baby who weighs 5.4 kg can be as healthy as a body weight of 8.1 kg as long as this weight is a double result of their birth weight.
That is why pediatricians monitor the growth of a baby not only from its weight, but also from its height and head circumference. As long as all growth in these measures is relatively stable, there’s no need to worry, Ma.
If the growth of a child’s height in the 50th and 90th percentiles for body weight, it is likely that your child needs to be supplemented by nutritional intake to encourage growth to be more optimal.
4. Eating habits
Breast milk is the best way to prevent obesity in infants. Babies have a very strong need for breastfeeding. When switching to bottle-feeding, there is a tendency for babies to overeat because every time they cry, their parents translate it as ‘hungry’. As a result, they have become accustomed to associating crying with hunger.
Breastfeeding is a natural shield against overeating. Babies start breastfeeding when they are hungry and stop when they are satisfied. Dr. Robert Murray of Ohio State University said that mothers turned to formula milk because they were worried about losing their baby’s weight in the first week or two of life due to poor milk supply. In fact, in fact, fluctuations are normal.
“That is not a sign that Mama has to stop breastfeeding,” he said.
Familiarize yourself with good eating early
Dr. Robert Murray argues, a way that can be done early to introduce healthy eating habits is to learn to recognize hunger cues. Naturally, every human being has his own hunger signal and his fullness signal. Don’t mess it up hastily giving food when he is fussy. The response every time a baby cries should not be in the form of offering food, because his fussiness can be based on various things. Not always because of hunger.
If left unchecked, it will become a habit. Food is then associated as comfort, no longer as a support for growth and physical health.