Weaning to Solids

Weaning babies onto solids is one of the most talked about topics among parents of young children. Everyone does it slightly differently, people do it at different times, they choose different foods and they give it to them in different ways. They also happen to talk about it a lot because it can sometimes become quite stressful - due to concerns over babies' appetites, their fussy tastes, the wasted food, the mess and the sheer time it takes each day preparing food, feeding the baby and clearing up afterwards! Lots of parents approach weaning with great enthusiasm, sometimes even starting before it is necessary, only to find that they reach a point where they long for the days where every meal was delivered by either breast or bottle!

Starting your baby on solid food needn't be a traumatic experience for anyone. Knowing that it is normal for babies to reject foods to start with means that you won't be surprised or disappointed if your lovingly prepared lunch results in nothing more than a clenched jaw and a turned head. There are a lot of considerations to take into account when it comes to weaning but it doesn't have to be complicated. Using our articles, familiarise yourself with what foods are good to start with, and more importantly, what foods you should avoid. You don't need to have prepared a month's worth of variously flavoured purees or bought everything from the baby food aisle, but knowing how to prepare and store food safely, and what foods to start with will mean you can start weaning with confidence.

Most people choose to start their baby on smooth foods, spoon feeding them food such as baby porridge or baby rice, pureed vegetables and fruits. There is, however, a growing trend for starting 'finger foods' (foods that a baby can hold themselves) from the beginning - although please note that this method is not recommended for babies weaned earlier than 6 months. This approach is commonly referred to as 'Baby Lead Weaning' and allows the quantity and type of food (within the choices you provide) to be determined by the child. Advocates of Baby Lead Weaning believe that it helps the child to develop a better relationship with food, amongst many other things. Some others worry that children fed this way don't get enough food but the main reason many parents avoid it is the inevitable mess! Some parents end up (intentionally or otherwise) using a mixture of the two techniques, giving pureed foods with finger foods alongside. Provided your child is fed a good variety of nutritious foods that they are not in danger of choking on (such as nuts), and that the food is prepared and stored hygienically, then the technique you go for is far less important.

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This internet site provides information of a general nature and is designed for educational purposes only. If you have any concerns about your own health or the health of your child, you should always consult a doctor or other healthcare professional.