Starting Your Baby On Solid Foods
It is an exciting time for all mom and dad when you are starting your baby on their first solid meal. Rice, oatmeal, barley, cereal, are usually the first go-to recipes. What will your baby have and how to add new variety, these are questions all new parents have and we are here to help!
According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, your baby can begin solids as early as 4 months old. Most babies have started on solids by the time they are 6 months old. When your baby is 7 to 8 months, your baby can eat a variety of foods from different food groups.
By 4 months, you have probably mastered your breastfeeding or formula drill to an art. Just as you thought things are under control, there are new challenges ahead. Your baby is soon ready for more exciting flavors. While your pediatrician and favorite mommy blogs, and the American Academy of Pediatrics have all recommended starting your baby on solids between 4-6 months. When to start, it is entirely up to your baby. Watch and check your baby’s readiness. Here are some signs that they are letting you know “I am ready”:
- Your baby can sit upright, and hold up his or her head.
- They are curious, eyeing or even gesturing and reaching for your food.
- They no longer reflexively thrust out their tongue.
- Your baby opens their mouth at the sight of a spoon coming towards their mouth.
Remember, there is no need to rush, they will all eventually be ready for more than just milk. Breastfeeding or formula is recommended and should be the main nutrition source for up to year-old. Don’t start your baby on solids before 4 months.
How and When to Feed
Introducing solid is important for your baby to get used to chewing, swallowing and providing a variety of nutritional benefits. In the beginning, you can introduce new food when your baby had their milk. Start with half a spoonful for less. Talk to your baby through the process. They might try the food and like it or reject it completely.
Some tips for the first few rounds of trying new solid food. Give your baby formula or breastmilk first, follow with a small spoon of solid, then feed them more milk. This way they are testing out and trying out the solid food, meanwhile they won’t be frustrated from being hungry.
First-time parents should never be discouraged if your baby ends up rejecting the food. If your baby likes the food, increase the amount of food gradually, it takes time for your baby to learn to swallow.
Do not make your baby eat if she cries or turns away when you feed her solid. Give them more time to learn and adjust, resume with breastfeeding or bottle-feeding and try on a later time or date.
It is important that you should always introduce one food at a time. This helps parents to see and make sure that your baby has no problem with that particular food. It is also a great way to learn whether your baby has any allergies to a certain type of food.
Happy baby, happy life!