Overall and supporting messages
Overall message -detail 6 months
6-24 months
Communication summary
Further reading
20 Questions and Answers

Media information for National Nutrition Week 2011

Feeding Smart from the Start.
Overall and supporting messages.

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Keep everything very clean when preparing food for your baby
Safe preparation and storage of complementary foods can prevent contamination and reduce the risk of diarrhoea, which is common in children of this age. The risk of infection transmitted by bottles with teats is higher than the use of ordinary cups (without spouts / straws); the use of a feeding bottle should be avoided.

All utensils, such as cups, bowls and spoons, used for an infant or young child’s food should be washed thoroughly.

Bacteria multiply rapidly in hot weather, which increases the risk of infection.  Bacteria multiply slower when food is refrigerated.  When food cannot be refrigerated it should be eaten soon after it has been prepared (no more than 2 hours), before bacteria have time to multiply.

The following are basic recommendations for the preparation of safe foods:

Wash your hands with soap and water before feeding your baby
It is important for caregivers to wash their hands thoroughly before feeding the baby.  The hands of babies, who are given solid pieces of food to hold and chew on, should be washed as well.

Hand washing with soap removes potentially harmful organisms from hands. This reduces the risk of transmitting these organisms from their hands to their mouths, to the hands to the hands of others, or to food or the environment that is shared with others.   Hand washing promotion interventions reduce diarrhoea by about 47%.  Babies and young children younger have a higher risk of severe illness from diarrhoea than older children and adults, and babies have the highest risk of death.

To wash hands properly, rub all parts of the hands and wrists with soap and water or an alcohol-based hand rub. Wash hands for at least 20 seconds or more. Pay special attention to fingertips, between fingers, backs of hands and base of the thumbs.  Dry the hands with a clean cloth.