When a baby just enters your life, as a new mother and parent, you are bound to have various concerns related to your baby’s health which is absolutely normal. The world of baby food can be a jungle to navigate. They may have major health and wellbeing issues if you are not careful with the stuff you feed them.
The digestive system of a baby is such that it’s sensitive and responds only to a particular kind of food.
Maple syrup is one of the products mothers are concerned about, knowing for its high sugar content.
Can Babies Have Maple Syrup?
For the knowledge of all mothers, maple syrup is extracted from the sap of maple trees.
In addition, maple trees store starch in the roots, which turns to sugar by springtime.
If you see a product in the market labeled ‘maple syrup’, just know that it follows strict health standards.
You have the assurance of using a quality product when you are using a labeled bottle of maple syrup. You know it’s made from real maple sap.
There are variations of maple syrup in the market, so stay away from that for your babies.
They are just syrups made with high fructose corn syrup mixed with other syrups made to taste like maple syrup.
Pediatricians advise new parents not to give food substances like honey and maple syrup.
However, research states that maple syrup is extracted directly from the sap of the maple tree, which is boiled for some time to be preserved for consumption later.
So, it’s not supposed to be bad for babies once they are over 12 months of age.
Once they have grown over a year, their intestines become more vital to fight any toxins bacteria may produce when consuming a particular kind of food.
1. When Exactly Can Babies Have Maple Syrup?
The first 10 and 12 months of a newborn’s life are always crucial.
Pediatricians have special needs instructions to the parents regarding what to feed them.
As per his natural cycle, when a baby starts eating solid foods, sugar is still never recommended as that might spike blood sugar levels.
In addition, it may be difficult for babies to process sugary foods until they have crossed over 12 years of age.
Once they are over a year old, you can mix a little maple syrup to their porridge and applesauce to make it sweet and palatable for the babies to have.
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2. Is Maple Syrup Suitable for Babies?
When a baby turns one year old, you can safely feed him maple syrup in various forms, as indifferent foods such as porridge and small oatmeal.
Whenever buying maple syrup for your baby, always remember to watch out for factors such as exact composition, delicate taste, and crystal clarity.
Such a product will ensure your baby has a perfectly healthy and suitable syrup due to all Health concerns, no matter how great.
The ideal maple syrup product has crystal clarity and a light flavor. It is mainly made during cold weather.
If a particular maple syrup product fulfills all the health specifications, it can be fed to your baby.
3. Benefits of Maple Syrup
Maple syrup is known to have many antioxidants which will fight internal damage or even inflammation.
It also has essential minerals such as zinc which will increase your resistance to any kind of illness.
Maple syrup is considered better than table sugar to be added to different foods.
This is because it will add the required sweetness to a particular food without causing any harm to our health.
It has an absolutely unique flavor to it, but that doesn’t mean it should be used daily.
In addition, it has a few health benefits, which you will experience only if used to a certain limit.
Origin and Composition of Maple Syrup
Maple syrup is the final product of an extensive production process. It’s made by collecting sap (a fluid-like substance) from a sugar maple tree. Only four maple species produce sap sweet enough to make the syrup.
Boiling the sap will create the delicious and thick substance we recognize as maple syrup. The debate about whether or not babies should eat maple syrup comes down to its composition. Here’s a summary of the nutrients you can find in pure maple syrup:
Does Maple Syrup Cause Infant Botulism?
Infant botulism is a bacterial infection that weakens certain muscles in babies and causes breathing and/or eating difficulties.
One of the most common causes of infant botulism is eating food (particularly honey) contaminated with Clostridia botulinum spores before the child’s digestive system is strong enough to handle the bacteria. Babies younger than one year are at risk of getting infected.
If you accidentally feed your child honey, follow our recent post to remedy the situation as soon as possible.
Your infant can’t get infant botulism from eating maple syrup. The substance is too dry and sugary for the bacteria in question to survive. If your child is suffering from infant botulism, they probably got it from a different source. Nevertheless, you shouldn’t feed such a young baby maple syrup.
Raw maple syrup is unprocessed and may cause infant botulism. It would be best if you didn’t feed your child raw sap.
Is Maple Syrup a Common Choking Hazard for Babies?
Sticky foods like thick syrup can choke a baby when combined with other solid foods. That’s why staying close to your child while eating is always a good idea.
Don’t feed your kid any food they’re not ready for. Check out our guide to find tips for introducing solid foods to infants.
Can Babies Be Allergic to Maple Syrup?
There are about 14 common allergens worldwide, but maple syrup isn’t one of them. A child with pollen-food allergies may react to raw maple sap. Nevertheless, the chances of your little one being allergic to maple syrup is very low.
To be safe, before you introduce maple syrup to your child, you need to take certain precautions. Give them a tiny amount at first and monitor their reaction over the next few days. If nothing bad happens, you can gradually increase the quantity each time you serve your baby maple syrup.
Examples of possible symptoms of an allergic reaction include the following:
- Rash or hives
- Stomach upset
- Breathing problems
- Swollen mouth or throat
Why Maple Syrup is Bad for Early Infants
Let’s find out why it’s bad to give your baby maple syrup too early after their birth or in excess quantity. The food may pose the following health risks.
High sugar intake is one of the most common causes of tooth decay in infants and adults. When your baby starts to grow teeth, you want to keep them as healthy as possible. Moderating their maple syrup intake helps.
Although it has some health benefits, sugar fills up the stomach quickly, and maple syrup can be very sugary. When babies eat maple syrup in excess and feel full, they’ll be less inclined to eat something else. This could cause your child to miss out on healthier foods containing the nutrients they need to develop.
You can add maple syrup to some healthy food if it improves their taste.
Unhealthy Eating Habits
As sweet as sugar is, the medical world agrees that it’s not the healthiest of foods. Despite the warnings, many adults struggle to limit their intake of sugary substances. Babies don’t know what’s healthy and what’s not. Hence, they need their parents to control their feeding impulses.
Allowing your child too much access to sweet maple syrup could cause them to get used to the taste of sugar, which could spiral into unhealthy feeding habits when they grow older.
This is a major problem that only happens when you don’t moderate how much maple syrup you feed your infant. The food has a lot of calories that can lead to excessive weight gain.
Precautions for Feeding Toddlers Maple Syrup
This section will reveal how to avoid all of the problems above. Here are some precautions to follow when giving maple syrup to your toddler.
- Get the go-ahead from your child’s pediatrician before introducing maple syrup to your baby.
- Only feed them quality organic maple syrup products (no artificial sweeteners) – the purer, the better.
- For the first-ever serving, feed them less than half a tablespoon.
- Wait 3-5 days to see if they get an allergic reaction, and discontinue use if they do.
- Store your maple syrup in the refrigerator.
Alternatives to Maple Syrup for Babies
It’s okay to give your little one a sweet treat now and then. If maple syrup doesn’t work out, here are a few healthy sugar alternatives:
- Fruit juice (we recommend you dilute)
- Milk mixed with cinnamon
Can babies have maple syrup? Whether your baby can have maple syrup or not somewhat depends on how old he is in months.
If your baby has crossed one year of age, it is safe to occasionally feed him maple syrup in his porridge and oatmeal breakfast.
That quantity is not known to cause any harm to your infant.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Should I Use Honey or Maple Syrup?
Authentic and real maple syrup is known to have more iron, calcium, zinc, and copper than honey has.
These minerals are great for various functions of health in our body.
Can A Baby Eat Honey?
Babies that are younger than one year should not be given honey or any solid food at all.
This is because babies’ digestive system under one year is not strong enough to absorb such heavy foods.
Is Pancake Syrup the Same as Maple Syrup?
There is a difference in ingredients between maple syrup and pancake syrup.
Pure maple syrup is made from maple tree sap, whereas pancake syrup is prepared with artificial flavors and corn syrup to resemble maple syrup in taste.
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Mo Mulla is a work from home dad who enjoys reading and listening to music, He loves being a dad and husband to a growing family. He also loves writing about his passions and hopes to change the world, 1 blog post at a time!