Myths & Facts Series

This Nestlé Nutrition Institute Series discusses the myths and facts related to pediatrics, maternal and clinical nutrition topics.

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Goyal and Singh in 2007 reported preference of home cooked food by 81 percent of the consumers in comparison to fast food outlets [Goyal and Singh, 2007].

During pregnancy, the absorbed iron is predominantly used to expand the woman’s erythrocyte mass, fulfil the foetus’s iron requirements and compensate for iron losses (i.e. blood losses) at delivery. To a large extent, the newborns’ iron content depends on their birth weight which is generally 200-270 mg for infants weighing between 2500-3500g respectively. Low-birth-weight infants (less than 2500 g) are born with fewer iron stores and are at high risk of deficiency after 2 months [Saddi and Shapira, 1970].

The child’s stomach capacity limits how much can be consumed in a single feeding. Generally, a child who weighs 8 kg will have a stomach capacity of 240 ml, about one large cupful, and cannot be expected to eat more than that at one meal. Thus, energy density of complementary foods should be more than breast milk beyond 6 months of age, that is, at least 0.8 kcal per gram.

Goyal and Singh in 2007 reported preference of home cooked food by 81 percent of the consumers in comparison to fast food outlets [Goyal and Singh, 2007]. However, in developing countries, homemade foods are often known to be of low nutritive value. Bulk is a major problem of homemade complementary foods. For adults and older children, it is usually possible to achieve an adequate protein and energy intake by increasing the daily consumption.