Starting your baby on solids
WHY SHOULD MY BABY ONLY CONSUME BREAST MILK OR FORMULA FOR THE FIRST 6 MONTHS?
- Starting your baby on solids is a fun and new experience! There is much to know about this process. For the first 6 months of life, breast milk or formula should provide all of your baby’s nutrients and calories. Before 6 months of age, a baby’s digestive system is not fully developed and ready to digest solids. Waiting until 6 months of age to introduce solids also aids in reducing the risk of food allergies and chronic illnesses such as eczema and obesity down the road. The American Academy of Pediatrics previously recommended waiting until 4 months of age to begin solids, but they have now changed that number to 6 months for the aforementioned reasons. In a recent study, 40 percent of mothers said they gave their infants solid foods before the age of 4 months, which is earlier than recommended. About 24 percent of mothers who breastfed, and 53 percent of mothers who formula-fed, gave their babies solid food too early. Just because your baby watches you eat or seems hungry all of the time does not warrant beginning solids prematurely.
BABY FOOD PUREES
- The best first foods for your young one should be easy to digest and unlikely to cause an allergic reaction. The foods on this site are broken down into vegetables, fruits, and meats. They are also broken down into age categories based on AAP guidelines of waiting 6 months until beginning solids, into 6 months +, and so forth based on digestive system development. These categories make it easy when starting your baby on solids. Purees are easily swallowed and digested and are listed amongst all of these categories. You should always wait 4 days before introducing a new type of puree (fruit, vegetable, or meat) to evaluate for possible food allergies.
STARTING YOUR BABY ON SOLIDS- THE FAVORITES
- Root vegetables such as sweet potato, acorn squash, butternut squash, and carrot are good starting vegetables (see recipes underneath the vegetable tab). Apples, bananas, and pears make good first fruit purees (see recipes underneath the fruit tab). Every baby has different preferences, but these seem to be some of the across the board favorites. You should gradually introduce one flavor at a time to your little one and gradually expand your baby’s palate to include diverse flavors. Make sure to always use the 4 day wait rule before introducing a new food. This means to wait 4 days in between new foods to monitor for possible allergies.
MOMMY OR DADDY TESTED, AND APPROVED!
- It is best to try the foods yourself prior to giving them to your baby. Have you ever tried your baby’s medicine or shampoo to see if it is really tearless? Trying these good homemade purees is less painful than tasting sour vitamin drops or burning your eyes! Give your child the best, and verify that it is truly a tasteful way to eat by trying your homemade creations.
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