Starting solids for your little one can be a time filled with questions, concerns and preconceived ideas about “the right way” to introduce these foods. In this bog, I will address some common myths surrounding a baby’s first foods and hopefully I can calm your worries.
Get ready for a mess!
Get ready to take some adorable photos!
Get ready for this new milestone - the first of many!
I hear this all of the time. Parents believe that they must feed veggies first to avoid the baby only wanting fruits. While it is true, most babies (and adults) will prefer sweeter foods, there is no research to suggest giving veggies first is beneficial. I recommend giving whatever you want first. Avocados, pears, peas, applesauce (raviolis? just kidding) are good starting points. Offer a variety of tastes/ food groups/colors in no particular order. You can start with rice….or oatmeal or barley. You can mix pears with oatmeal. Enjoy it! Remember your baby’s stomach is small (between the size of a kiwi and an orange) so no need to fill an entire bowl with cereal. Start with about two tablespoons.
Starting solids early will help the baby sleep through the night.
Eating solid food is a developmental milestone and should not play a role in sleep goals. Seriously, if this was true, I would have given my 6 week olds a pureed, 5 course meal! Most babies are simply not ready before 4 months of age. They need to have good head control and the tongue thrust reflex must be gone. This is a normal human response to something placed in the mouth - tongue thrusts outward. This usually disappears at 4-6 months which is why we recommend waiting until then to practice with solids. Practice is just what it is at first. The baby needs to figure out how to get the food off the spoon, get the food from the front to the back of the mouth and then swallow. Be realistic with this new experience and be patient. It may even take a few weeks to get your baby eating regular meals. No worries as there main source of calories is from their formula or breastmilk. They do however need some supplemental food at 6 months to prevent vitamin deficiencies (mainly iron and zinc)especially if exclusively breastfed). Always get the ok from one of us that your little is ready for solids and ask us any questions that may come up. We are always here and willing to help.
Infants cannot have dairy, nuts or any spices.
I have one rule - no honey before a year. While I would recommend keeping foods bland to start with, by the time my kiddos are 10 months old they are eating a variety of pureed adult foods (sometimes with simple spices…ehemm ehemm, garlic?) and some store bought baby food. I’d love to say that I make separate, pureed, organic, food cubes with a baby blender type thing and store them in those cute freezer containers, but let’s be real. I have no time. I briefly dabbled in making some baby food with kid #1 but the little jars in Ingles were just too tempting for me. I envy you if you make your own, make me some for my toddlers! Just be careful not to load foods with extra salt or sugar. Keep it simple. Soon they will eat nothing but chicken nuggets and waffles and then you will need to bring out the creative juices.
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