Introducing Solid Foods
Introducing your baby to solid foods, sometimes called complementary feeding or weaning, should start when your baby is around 4-6 months old. At the beginning, how much your baby eats is less important than getting them used to the idea of eating. They'll still be getting most of their energy and nutrients from breast milk or first infant formula. Giving your baby a variety of foods, alongside breast or formula milk, from around 4-6 months of age will help set your child up for a lifetime of healthier eating. Gradually, you'll be able to increase the amount and variety of food your baby eats until they can eat the same foods as the rest of the family, in smaller portions.
Signs your baby is ready for solid foodsThere are 3 clear signs, which, when they appear together from around 6 months of age, show your baby is ready for their first solid foods alongside breast milk or first infant formula.
They'll be able to:
- stay in a sitting position and hold their head steady
- co-ordinate their eyes, hands and mouth so they can look at the food, pick it up and put it in their mouth by themselves
- swallow food (rather than spit it back out)
- chewing their fists
- waking up in the night (more than usual)
- wanting extra milk feeds
These are all normal behaviours for babies and not necessarily a sign that they're hungry or ready to start solid food. Starting solid foods will not make your baby any more likely to sleep through the night.
Check out the Petit Zebre Food Guide to start your weaning adventure with us...
Always consult with your child's pediatrician before introducing solid foods to your baby, and specifically discuss any foods that may pose as allergy risks.
Source: NHS Weaning Guide