Green Beans for Baby
Worried baby isn’t getting enough calcium, vitamin A or vitamin C? Green beans are the perfect solution! In just one cup of green beans baby will be getting a nice big dose of some very important nutrients. These nutrients can help prevent a lot of different conditions including asthma, ear infections and even the common cold and flu! Even though green beans have a rich green color, they will provide baby with carotenoids, which are normally found in vibrantly colored orange fruits and veggies. These carotenoids are potent health-supporting antioxidants that will help keep baby free from illness. Green beans have also been shown to have greater overall antioxidant capacity than similar foods in the pea and bean families, making them a nutritious, and delicious option for baby and kiddos!
Highlighted Nutritional Importance of Greens Beans
Vitamin K – this vitamin is best known for its role in preventing blood clots but it’s also important for bone growth and development
Vitamin C – this is a crucial vitamin for a healthy immune system, mucous membranes and respiratory system
Vitamin A – supports baby’s immune system, skin, eyes and bones
Vitamin B2 – also known as Riboflavin, this B Vitamin helps your body produce energy and is important for baby’s bone, muscle and nerve development
Manganese – helps form bone and cartilage and plays a role in the formation of carbohydrates, amino acids and cholesterol
Copper – this mineral is essential for forming red blood cells and boosts the body’s ability to mend tissues and break down sugars
Magnesium – this mineral is necessary for the body’s bone and skeletal health and helps regulate energy production inside the cell
Chromium – works with insulin to help maintain normal levels of glucose in the body and promotes the building of proteins in baby’s growing tissues
How to Select and Store Green Beans for Baby
According to the Environmental Working Group, green beans are not on the Dirty Dozen List, meaning they aren’t heavily contaminated with pesticides. Buying organic is a personal choice. When selecting green beans at the farmers market or grocery store, it’s important to purchase beans that have a smooth feel and a vibrant green color. You’ll know if a green bean is fresh if it has a firm texture and a nice “snap” when broken.
Store unwashed, whole fresh beans in a plastic bag kept in the crisper drawer of your refrigerator and they should last for about a week. If you choose to purchase frozen green beans, or freeze your own fresh beans, you’ll be happy to know that most studies show that green beans retain valuable nutrients for 3-6 months after freezing!
Prior to cooking your green beans, wash them and remove both ends of the bean. The beans won’t last as long if you wash or cut the ends off before cooking. Steaming or boiling seems to be the easiest cooking option and will provide maximum flavor and nutrition. It will also make the bean soft enough for a smooth, healthy puree for baby. Green beans make fantastic purees, but are also perfect as a finger food snack for older babies and toddlers!
Green Bean Recipes