Did you know that you can get your baby started on solid foods at 4 to 6 months old? Although they should be getting most of their nutrition from milk, that age is usually a good time to start introducing them to solids. Since every baby develops on a different schedule, how will you know if your kid is ready? What will you feed them? Read on to learn more:
Is Your Baby Ready For Solid Foods?
Here are a few signs that it may be a good time to start introducing solids:
- Your baby can sit upright with support.
- They can hold their head steady.
- If you offer an empty spoon, they close their mouth around it.
- You notice your baby mouthing on their toys or their fingers.
- They watch you eat with interest.
What Solids Should You Give?
This should be a slow process so that you don’t overwhelm your baby with tastes, textures, and variety. Start by offering simple and unseasoned foods that have just one ingredient. Do this one at a time with a three to five day pause between each type of food. This way, if your kid has a food allergy or other bad reaction, you’ll have a clear idea of what’s causing it.
Some good starter foods for younger babies include:
- Cooked and pureed vegetables like sweet potatoes
- Cooked and pureed fruit like bananas or applesauce
- Pureed meat or beans
- Baby cereal that’s softened in liquid
Older babies (about 8-10 months) can handle finger foods like soft fruits, cooked vegetables, dry cereal, or bites of pasta. Once they reach a year old, you should be offering your kid three meals a day that include finely chopped or mashed versions of your food. This will help them transition from baby products and purees to toddler-friendly meals.
Is your baby rejecting the new food? It could be a little too early and you need to let them grow a little more. On the other hand, it’s very natural for them to not like the new tastes and textures at first. Don’t force them to eat; keep meal times relaxed and fun. Just try again in a few days. They may push the spoon away the first few times but on the tenth they could love the food.
If you have questions about what to feed your baby or how to introduce new foods to a fussy eater, bring it up with their doctor. Pediatricians in Brooklyn, NY know the latest research on infant development. They’ll be able to give you a wealth of tips and tricks for making a smooth transition to solid foods.