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Guide To Feeding Solid Food To Your Baby

 

In the first year of your babies life, they will go from eating nothing but formula or breastmilk, to being able to dig into cake on their birthday. Your baby will learn so much, and how to eat is one of the big items they will tackle.  As the parent, it may be tough to decide when to introduce solids to your baby, but there are a few questions that you can use to help you to decide.  

  • How old is my baby? If your baby is 4-6 months old, it’s possible they are ready to start solids.  Most doctors recommend waiting as close to six months as possible, but anytime within that window is safe.
  • Does my baby seem satisfied? If your little one is content with the breastmilk or formula you have been giving them, then go ahead and hold off on the solids, but if they seem restless and like they are left “wanting more”- it’s probably time to start offering at least one solid meal a day to them.  
  • Can my baby sit up with little to no assistance? If you can sit your little one in a high chair and they can support themselves with little to no assistance, then they have scored a point in the “I’m ready for solids” category.  
  • Is your baby able to maintain head control? Head control is an important sign that your little one will be able to handle swallowing the thicker textures.  
  • Is my baby interested in what I’m eating? When sit down with a plate food, and your little one seems to perk up and pay attention, they are ready to try a few bites of something new!

How To Introduce Solid Foods to Your Baby​

Now that you know your baby is ready for solids, how do you start? As with most things, it’s best to keep it simple at first. Start with adding one meal a day into their routine. Many parents start with a meal just before bed time, in hopes that the solids will help them to sleep longer.

Best First Foods for Your Baby

You can begin with a single grain cereal (such as the rice). Next, it’s recommended that you try vegetables and save the fruits for later.

a guide to introducing solids to babies infograph

If your little one gets his/her first taste of the sweet fruits before the veggies, it may be hard to get them to want to eat the vegetables. Remember to try one thing at a time and give it a few days before starting something new.

You want to watch out for allergic reactions, and if your baby shows any signs of one, you will want to know what the food was that you introduced so you can pinpoint the cause quickly. After you and your baby have gotten the hang of one meal a day, you can expand to more as needed. Around nine months, you can add finger foods such as Cheerios so they can begin learning to fed themselves.  

If you are at the store shopping for solids, you may notice there are several options as far as brands and packaging. Organic, non-organic, pouches, jars, plastic containers, and more. You may even be debating if making your baby food at home would be best. There is no right or wrong answer for what type, brand, or packaging is best for your baby. Purchase a small amount of what you would like to try and go for it, you can always switch it up later.

If you want to try homemade, no need for a fancy “baby food maker”, you can start with a regular blender and an assortment of vegetables and fruits. Cook them up, blend them and pour the puree into ice cube trays to place in the freezer. You can freeze the puree and heat it up as needed.  

We wish you the best of luck as you start the solids journey with your little one!

 
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