Making the right food decisions for child is something every mother worries about. Guinea corn is widely known for its numerous health benefits. Nevertheless, before you incorporate guinea corn to your child’s diet, there are some side effects you may want to look out for.
First, What’s Guinea Corn?
Guinea corn (also known as sorghum) is a cereal. It is grown and eaten mostly in West Africa, especially Nigeria. Guinea Corn is a good complement for baby food because it’s rich in nutrients such as vitamin B, potassium, magnesium and iron.
As a result of this, its a very popular cereal. Nevertheless, despite its great health benefits, guinea corn can also be a source of potential harm, especially to babies.
This article provides you with every key information you need about guinea corn.
Read on to learn five side effects of guinea corn in children and some tips on feeding your child with guinea corn.
The Side Effects:
1. Gluten Intolerance
Guinea corn contains a form of insoluble protein called gluten. It’s possible that your child may be allergic to gluten or some of the other constitiuents of guinea corn.
As a result, you should watch out for any of the following symptoms when introducing guinea corn into your baby’s diet:
- Fat in stool
These are the most common symptoms of gluten intolerance in children. Therefore, if you notice this at any point, withdraw guinea corn and book an appointment with the doctor.
2. Gastrointestinal Intolerance
The high fiber content of guinea corn can make some kids experience tummy issues after eating it. A common symptom of this condition is excessive farting.
However, this reaction to guinea corn is rare.
3. Diseases Of The Digestive System
High fiber products and meals (such as guinea corn), are not recommended for children who are prone to or who are suffering from diseases affecting their digestive systems .
Furthermore, cereals high in fiber are not suitable for the immature digestive system of your child. Therefore, be careful to observe any reaction by your child when you feed him or her guinea corn.
4. Diarrhea Or Constipation
A sudden introduction of guinea corn to your baby’s diet may lead to diarrhea or constipation. This occurs when the child’s digestive system doesn’t have enough time to adjust to the change.
Therefore, we recommend a slow but consistent introduction during weaning. This typically involves having a spoon full of the food type over three days before increasing quantities or adding other types of food.
5. Reduced Weight Gain
Guinea corn is a good source of complex carbohydrate which helps a person stay fuller for longer. Although this effect is good for those who want to lose weight, it is not ideal for your baby because he or she needs to gain weight.
To help you deal with this side effect, here are some simple Nigerian meals that are guaranteed to help your baby gain weight fast.
Tips on Feeding Your Baby With Guinea Corn
- Guinea corn meals should be fortified before giving to children. Since the digestive system is still immature, it’s safer to avoid cereals with large fiber content.
- Be Slow But Steady: Don’t make guinea corn meal the main dish in your child’s diet. 1 or 2 servings are enough for a day. In fact you can add have the guinea guinea corn fermented as in pap to make it easier for your child.
As long as you keep an eye out for these symptoms, everything would work out just fine.
- Nwachoko Ndidi and Alum, E.U (2014). “Production And Nutritional Studies Of Guinea Corn Spiced Drink And Cassava Fried Balls.” World Journal of Pharmaceutical Research. Accessed on 15th October, 2020 from https://www.researchgate.net/publication/267748806_PRODUCTION_AND_NUTRITIONAL_STUDIES_OF_GUINEA_CORN_SPICED_DRINK_AND_CASSAVA_FRIED_BALLS
- Kevin Eifediyi (2015). “Studies on the growth and yield response of guinea corn (Sorghum bicolor) to organomineral fertilizer application in Ilorin North Central Nigeria.” Nigerian Journal of Applied Sciences. Accessed on 15th October, 2020 from https://www.researchgate.net/publication/279059907_Studies_on_the_growth_and_yield_response_of_guinea_corn_Sorghum_bicolor_to_organomineral_fertilizer_application_in_Ilorin_North_Central_Nigeria
- Eke- Ejiofor J (2018). “Evaluation of the Nutrient Content and Sensory Properties of Spiced Ogi (Gruel) Produced From Different Cereal Blends.” Journal of Nutrition Health and Food Science. Accessed on 15th October, 2020 from https://symbiosisonlinepublishing.com/nutritionalhealth-foodscience/nutritionalhealth-foodscience148.php