Introducing Solid Foods to Baby - As a mom, I know its very exciting when you start solids for your darling baby. At the same time, you should be worried about N number of questions like when to start, how to introduce solids, how much you should offer and many more.
While its an important step in your baby's life and going to help develop healthy eating habits the rest of his/her life. Worry not! This post helps you to clarify all your doubts. If you have any specific query regarding weaning, I shall try to answer the same. I would like to hear from you too, update your baby weaning experience in comments.
Here is a quick video of Introducing Solid Foods to your baby
Why homemade food is best for your baby?
When your baby is ready for solids, prefer healthy homemade foods rather than packaged food. Also, remember that solids food can't replace the nutrients breastmilk or formula provides during the first year.
So consider including solids in your baby's diet as a complementary feeding. Although packaged and ready-made foods are easily available near your doorsteps, feeding homemade baby food is beneficial to your baby. Here is why.
- Homemade food is fresh, delicious, economical and eco-friendly.
- You know precisely what your baby is eating.
- You can plan your baby's meal with adequate nutrition.
- You can make your own combinations based on your baby's needs and likings.
- You can protect your baby from artificial ingredients and preservatives.
- Made with lots of love!
When to start weaning or When to introduce solids to your baby?
Please read the post on when to start solids for baby.
- Start with vegetable or fruit purees. Apple, banana, pear, avocado, pumpkin & sweet potato are great first foods to start with.
- Prepare a small amount of baby food and give as a runny puree when you begin. Use cooled boiled water to make your baby food. Adjust the consistency by adding breastmilk or formula.
- Test the temperature of the food by pouring a little amount in your wrist before you feed your baby.
- Make the baby sit comfortably in your lap or bouncy chair. Be sure that baby is upright enough to swallow well.
- Offer pureed solids to your baby after breastfeeding or formula feeding. Begin with one or two teaspoons. Always prefer soft-tipped spoon to feed baby food rather than using a bottle. As the baby may know the difference between solids and milk.
- Stop feeding the baby when he is full. Turns the head away from food, playing with food, refuses to eat, leans back are the signs that baby had enough and his tummy is full. Never force the baby to eat. If your baby doesn't like a particular food, try again in a week.
- Start with one meal a day. Gradually you can add another meal by next month. Once the baby started eating solids, thicken the food consistency by adding less liquid. Also, increase the quantity.
- Introduce new foods in the morning or late afternoon. Never introduce more than one food at a time when introducing solids to your baby. Follow 3 days wait rule. Check for allergy symptoms when you introducing new food to your baby and stop feeding your baby if you find any symptoms.
What are 3 days wait rule?
3 days wait rule is a simple way to check possible allergic reactions including skin rashes, tummy troubles like gas or diarrhea or vomiting, poop troubles to new foods offered to your baby. Introduce new food at a space of 3 days apart. It's a good rule to follow when your family has a history of allergies.
Once you have introduced several foods without any allergies say around 10 months of age, you can combine mixing foods without worrying much about this rule (it's not applied for nuts and the foods which have a history of allergies in your family).
Points to consider during the introduction of solids to baby :
- Always serve the baby with fresh food to prevent the loss of nutrients. Consume within 1 hour after preparation. Discard the leftovers before it gets contaminated.
- A baby may not eat much in the beginning, but it's important to offer solids to get used to the experience of eating.
- It's normal to notice a change in stools, as soon as you started solids to your baby. If your baby is constipated after the introduction of solids, stop offering apples & bananas. Switch to other fruits and vegetables.
- To get the baby to used to the texture and taste, offer a variety of foods. The transition should go smooth from purees to mashed, finger foods and family foods.
- Remember each baby is different, will not like all foods and textures. Patience is a key, offer your baby different foods with different textures.
- Always check with your pediatrician before introducing any new food.
Do I need to give water to my baby along with solids?
Baby doesn't require water until 6 months as he gets all hydration from breast milk or formula milk. Giving water to baby water younger than 6 months, reduce the body's ability to absorb nutrients from breast milk or formula.
After 6 months, you can offer water to the baby after a meal or when he is thirsty. Giving water with meals may help keep constipation at bay. Don't force the baby to have water as it might make the baby's tummy full. After one year, the baby can have water as much the baby likes.
How much food should I feed my baby?
Feed your baby on demand. Each baby has his own appetite and they will eat the right amount of foods that they need. So never force the baby to eat and just watch his eating patterns which will change daily, offer a well balanced healthy diet of solid foods to ensure eating the right amount of nutritious foods.
Also, Check out the below links for 6 - 18 months Homemade Baby food recipes
- 6 months Baby food recipes
- 7 months Baby food recipes
- 8 months Baby food recipes
- 9 months Baby food recipes
- 10 months Baby food recipes
- 11 months Baby food recipes
- 12- 18 months Baby food recipes