Your baby’s amazing brain development from 10-12 months

Learning, learning every day

When you think about how much your baby is learning at the moment, you get a bit of an idea about how exciting life must be for them. They’re absorbing all kinds of new things about the world every single day, and as they head towards toddlerhood, you’ll see more and more of their little personality shining through.

At the moment, your baby’s brain development is focused on 4 main areas:

• Coordination – your baby is gaining more control over their body, which is essential for everything that involves movement, like crawling and learning to walk, using a spoon and playing with their toys.

• Talking – that cute baby babble will soon start to sound more like real words. “Mama” and “dada” often come first, but some babies start with simple animal noises they’ve heard in songs, “baaa” being a common favourite!

• Emotions and social behaviour – babies are natural-born copycats and constantly watch others to learn how the world works. As they absorb people’s facial expressions, voices, words and actions, they’re learning important lessons about emotions, relationships and how to be more independent. All on a basic baby level, of course!

• Visual development – your baby’s vision is now as good as an adult’s. Their memory is becoming more advanced too, which is why they’re getting better at recognising people, objects, shapes and colours.

The right balance of healthy brain food

Everything your baby learns, whether it’s giggling and chatting, taking little wobbly steps or scribbling their first work of art, relies on healthy brain development. And that relies on good nutrition.

Giving your baby a wide variety of nutrients will help to support their brain development, with iron being one of the most important nutrients. A lack of it can leave your baby feeling tired and lacking in energy.

For such an essential nutrient, iron can be surprisingly hard for the body to absorb. The good news is there are plenty of baby-friendly iron-rich foods to choose from, making it easier to serve some up every day. Good sources include red meat, eggs, lentils and green leafy vegetables like broccoli and kale. Vitamin C helps the body absorb iron more easily, so it’s a good idea to serve up some fruit or diluted fruit juice whenever your baby is enjoying an iron-rich meal or snack.

Omega 3 fats are another key brain-building nutrient and are found in oily fish such as salmon and mackerel. Our homemade baby recipes include a variety of yummy ideas to help you include them in your baby’s menu.

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