Are you thinking of giving solid to your baby! Normally you think of food like oatmeal, mashed bananas, and jars of purees. Nowadays parents are skipping baby food altogether in flavor of adult and table food. This topic is for baby food or led weaning for new parents will help to understand how all these tips work and the good reasons why you want to give it a try!
What is Baby food or led weaning?
In simple words to let your baby feed himself right from the start when he/she is six months old! It’s the baby-led weaning process. Most babies are not good with hand-eye coordination just yet, the point is no spoonful purees or mashed potatoes.
Instead, babies should eat whole, healthy foods like cooked chicken, avocado whatever the rest of the family is eating for meals. If you’re new or going to soon be parents it may be shocking and sound pretty odd. But this method has its own benefits.
Pros and Cons of Baby Led Weaning?
Baby Led Weaning has its own pros and cons that are very important to know when deciding if this is the right feeding method for your newborn.
Below are several Pros include:-
- No accidental overfeeding-As your baby itself regulates her/his food intake and the baby stops when he or she is full. There is very little chance of overeating.
- Baby will enjoy a variety of foods-In BLW your child will enjoy a wide variety of foods that help the baby to develop a more advanced palate.
- Help Prevent allergies– A number of studies show that the baby consumes a potential allergen like peanut products and fish. This helps to be less likely to food allergies in later life.
- Easier to travel and run errands-Suppose you’re out for the day with your baby and not bring his snakes or purees. With BLW baby can eat whatever you eat-in a restaurant.
- Advanced hand-eye coordination-All what lifting food to their mouth and eating, takes a good amount of coordination. Babies who do this have a head start in this area over those who are spoon-fed by parents.
- Safely handle food-they can learn to chew and swallow.
- Understand-Different textures, sizes, tastes, and shapes of food.
Some of Cons parents need to know BLW
- It can be messy– Obviously, like a little man, he can fling some of that table food around.
- Lower iron– Iron level maybe drop when a baby goes from milk to BLW because a lot of iron-rich foods are difficult to chew without teeth.
- Limitation on family meals– While BLW offers a variety of foods but many foods you can’t feed your baby until they grow older. So, you’ll need to adjust your meal according to a baby.
- A few scary scenes– Handing a banana to your child and then watching the baby try a bite, it is kind of terrifying. Because sometimes babies bite a big piece of banana oops! Nothing to worry about! As they have a very strong gag reflex. But that’s scary to watch.
Baby Food or Led Weaning-10+ Tips and Recipes For New Moms
1. Wait until your baby is ready
There are specific signs you will notice that your baby is ready to led weaning. When your baby reaches the age of six months and he starts to sit up with neck control.
Additionally, your baby will show interest in your food by leaning forward and opening his mouth for your fork.
2. Set mealtime
Eat at the same time when your baby eats and doesn’t force him to eat too much. Your tiny man is much intelligent so, don’t be smart in front of the baby if you eat pizza and giving him broccoli. Clean up your diet and add good nutrition to your diet. Because your baby eats what you eat?
3. Get the right temp
Your baby’s food should neither be too warm nor too cold. Always try to avoid extreme temperatures.
4. The Best Foods for Baby Led Weaning
- Sweet Potatoes
- Soft cooked apples
- Soft boiled Carrots, green beans, zucchini
- Ripe peaches and pears, plums, and melon
- Green beans
- Egg yolk
- Soft meat
- Slices of sprouted bread, cooked pasta, brown rice
5. Baby foods to avoid while baby food or led weaning
- High choking foods– Grapes, cherry/grape, tomatoes, nuts(You can get a full list here)
- Added table salt or sugar
- Processed foods-Chips, popcorn, sugar-containing foods, breakfast cereals, gum, and hard candies.
- Stimulants-chocolate or sugar
Consider supplementing with the program-The FDA, The National Institutes of Health and have updated their guidelines to support the science What are the American Academy of Pediatrics reasons behind early and sustained allergen foods?
6. Safety Concerns
Obviously, safety concerns are the most important while introducing solids to your baby. Parents should be attentive and never leave the baby alone when he’s eating anything.
7. Won’t My Baby Choke?
Your baby may be choking while feeding, so, close supervision is very necessary. As the baby grows, the gag reflex moves further back towards the throat. Thus, baby-led weaning helps the baby to chew and swallow when this gag reflex is still very close to the mouth.
It’s very important that all parents should understand the sign of choking and how to respond to avoid this situation. But it’s always a good idea to concern with your local hospital or doctor.
8. Tips for Baby Led Weaning
- Don’t let baby too hungry-Hunger can be a bad experience for anyone. So don’t let your baby hungry for hours. Nurse or feed baby up before offering solids.
- Manage your expectations-Baby won’t eat much at first. So, don’t expect much.
- Be Patient-Babies can take longer to be habitual of weaning.
- Accept the mess-Don’t get frustrated with the baby mess.
- Don’t cut food too tiny-Serve large pieces of food that make baby easy to hold.
- Make food soft enough-Mashed food is good for your baby.
If the progress is not as you expect, don’t be overwhelmed. You can choose some other ways of feeding. Some moms let the baby eat soft pear slices, a few prefer to spoon-feed food like pureed meat or bone broth, some parents make smoothies that baby can drink through a straw.
Just make your own experiments with feeding approaches that work best for your tiny man. But remember if the baby doesn’t seem ready, don’t force him, you have to wait for a week or two and then try again.