Teething is the word used for when the babies start getting teeth, which is usually around 6 months. Some of the infants start getting irritated when the teeth push through the gums, while a few babies don’t have much problem.
Along with the babies, the teething period can be hard for parents too as an irritable child can be hard to soothe. The child feels like biting or chewing on something hard as it helps them feel better. Tenderness of gums can lead to a rise in the baby’s temperature and should be brought to the doctor’s notice. Fever can also be due to other reasons therefore it gets important to get consulted to diagnose the cause.
What is Arrowroot?
Arrowroot is a starchy product that is obtained from the tuberous root of tapioca, kudzu, and cassava that grow in warm climates. These plants are staples of native cuisines of the Caribbean and South America.
Those who know about arrowroot might remember giving it to their infants at the time of teething.(1)
Arrowroot is low in vitamins, minerals, and proteins. It does not contain any allergen like corn or soy. It offers a little amount of fiber and if eaten in large quantities can even cause constipation. It is also known to have some stomach healing properties.
To make arrowroot powder the tuber needs to be peeled, boiled, and then dried. It gives a cornstarch-like powder that is coarse and mild in taste and is easier to digest than wheat flour.
When mixed with water, arrowroot powder gets into a jelly form to which numerous flavors can be added.
How is Arrowroot Used?
Arrowroot is a good thickening agent and can be used like cornstarch and potato starch. You might need just 1/3 of arrowroot to replace any starch.
It can be whisked into a cold liquid before adding it to hot water. Adding any kind of starch to hot water may prevent the starch from breaking down properly making the food lumpy.
Uses of Arrowroot
Arrowroot can be used to make teething biscuits for babies with pain in the gums and sore mouth. But, it cannot be used in everyday baking and cannot be a substitute for wheat or gluten-free flour.
It can also be used to make crackers using chicken broth that taste wonderful with flavorful dips and toppings. It can be great for gluten-free lovers.
Arrowroot can be helpful in soothing sore tummies. A study done on a group of adults found that arrowroot helped in treating diarrhea in people with irritable bowel syndrome. (2) However, this study was done on 11 participants and more research is needed to prove its effectiveness.
Is Arrowroot Good for Babies
Following are the reasons that make arrowroot good for babies and infants:
- It can be used as a thickening agent in the foods that are offered to the babies.
- It can be an excellent substitute for breast milk in those babies who contract breast milk allergy or if the baby needs to be weaned off breast milk.
- It helps in easing bowel movement.
- It is gluten-free and therefore is allergen-free.
- It contains magnesium, zinc, iron, and traces of other minerals thereby facilitating the healthy development of the baby.
- It also helps in alleviating diarrhea and making up for the lost electrolytes.(4)
- It can be applied to mouth sores, rashes, blemishes, and painful gums. It provides a soothing sensation and relief from any kind of burning effect.
Other Uses of Arrowroot
Along with the numerous benefits for babies and being used in many recipes, arrowroot has many cosmetic benefits. It can be used for cosmetic purposes in the following ways:
- Dry shampoo: It can be applied to the scalp to clean and refresh hair without using a shampoo.
- Deodorant: It can be used to make homemade deodorant by adding it to coconut powder and baking soda.
- Talcum baby powder: It can be used on its own as a talcum powder to absorb moisture and increase smoothness.
- Homemade makeup: Arrowroot powder can be mixed with cinnamon powder to make face powder, beetroot to make blush, and cocoa powder to make bronzer. Arrowroot powder has numerous uses along with being extremely beneficial for babies. It helps in soothing the irritable babies who have teething pains and in easing other teething related symptoms as well.