BREASTFEED/FORMULA ON DEMAND TILL ONE YEAR COMPLETION is mandatory.
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How much will my baby eat in this month?
Baby might have a maximum of 5 spoons thick porridges/mashed food/family foods.Always breast feed or formula feed 40 minutes before offering solids.This will ensure that solids only complement breastfeed/formula feed and doesn’t replace breastfeed or formula feed till one year. Offer as much as the baby wants. There is no upper or lower limit set for the quantity.The decision on quantity should be made by the baby only.
Which part of the day/When should I feed solids to my baby?
Anytime whenever the baby demands would be my answer ideally. Initially figuring out baby’s hunger or following the cues may be difficult but it is not tough for a parent to understand it. Few suggest noon timing to introduce new food. But it is absolutely depends on you and your baby.
How should I offer food to my baby?
If you follow traditional weaning you can use your hands/spoon to feed your baby. If you follow BLW baby would be sitting and handling food by himself/herself.Whichever method you follow ensure that baby is sitting while eating/being fed solids. Ensure that yours hands are washed well and all bowls/spoons are totally sterlised. If you are following traditional method of weaning and have been feeding baby so long it is the right time to encourage baby to self feed.Place a plate in front of the baby and serve the family meals.Initially baby will not grab and eat.But slowly with lots of mess and loads of trial baby will eat like a pro and surprise you. Be patient and allow baby to self feed.This is very important to encourage self feeding. If this is not done ,we might have to run behind them always during meal times even till their teen age. SELF FEEDING IS NOT HARMFUL.LET BABY TOUCH AND EXPLORE FOOD.LET IT GET MESSY RATHER THAN GETTING FUSSY LATER.
What should I offer in this month?
Anything that the family eats or any vegetable/fruit puree or any home thick porridges can be offered without salt ,sugar,honey and milk till one year. It can be a piece of dosa or a fruit stick or paneer cubes or crumbled eggs or anything. There is no time limit for introducing any food.My doctor denied me when I had asked her should I delay the introduction of raw carrots/millets beyond 10 months.She said introduce anything and everything that the family eats before 10 months.(Except sugar,salt,honey and milk).This is what is recommended by WHO & AAP too. Hence none of the diet charts I have given will not have any specifications on what ingredient/food should be introduced in which month.You have to be just careful/watchful/cautious while introducing common allergens like nuts,mushrooms,milk products(ghee/paneer/cheese),eggs and always consider your own family history of allergies before proceeding with any new food. No more separate cooking for baby is required .
Why should I not give animals milk but give all milk products before one year? or Why are curd/cheese/paneer/ghee allowed before one year but not milk?
The proteins in animals milk is a overload to baby’s kidneys and might damage those tiny ones.Cow’s milk is for the calf and not for humans is what I believe.It is deficient in vitamins and Iron ,so early introduction might lead to iron deficiency. The same applies to any animals milk.Babies below one year cannot digest any animal milk except mother’s milk and formula.Babies can digest curd/yogurt when compared to milk because the lactose in milk is converted to lactic acid in curd/yogurt .When it comes to cheese/paneer the complex proteins/enzymes are broken down and all whey proteins are washed away in the cheese making process. So babies can digest milk products but not any animal milk before one year.However kids with cow’s milk protein intolerance might not digest/will be allergic to even milk products.
My baby turns his/her head and refuses food.I feel so upset.I have tried various foods.What should I do?
Do not be panicked dear parent. It is absolutely okay for a baby to refuse food and go without eating even a pinch of solid on a day.Baby might not want to eat at that time or baby might not like that particular food/texture you served or baby was not hungry then. You can try after some time or offer food to baby to handle by himself/herself.Let them explore and get messy.It is no harm.Make them a part of family meal.They will learn from others and begin eating.As long as baby is active/hydrated(urinating enough and not constipated) and not sick ,please don’t worry much about not eating/refusal of food. As long as they are breastfed/formula fed please don’t force them to eat when they refuse.The more you force the more tougher would your meal times. I strongly believe babies get all emotions and feelings from their parents.So if you are going to be mad/angry/sad/fearful about your baby’s hunger strike ,baby will also carry the same emotions/feelings and go more cranky and fussy. Don’t force feed.Today you might be very happy of feeding your child a good quantity but later child will become fussy and will start hating meal times.So relax!Breathe in !Breathe Out and try later . I know it is easy to say this but very tough to bring it into practice. I have also been through all these stages of madness and all roller coaster rides. Don’t stress yourself and the baby. Just go with the flow.
Babies refuse food/change their food habits
- When they are not hungry/they don’t feel like eating just like adults
- When they are likely to fall sick
- When the environment changes
- When new people arrive
- When they are teething
- When they are undergoing a growth spurt
- When they decide to go on a hunger strike(Yes they do even for days together)
- For no reason at all(To just make my MOMMA/DADA MAD)
For other do’s & don’ts kindly refer here
.I have given detailed pointers.
The reason behind not having specified any timings for BM/FM or for solids is to stress on “FEED ON DEMAND”.Don’t feed baby based on your clock.Feed baby based on his/her hunger cues.
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Until one year don’t replace breastfeed /formula feed with any solids.
Always have a word with your pediatrician before introducing any new food.
Do consider history of family allergies when introducing new foods.
Don’t force feed baby.
Until two years kindly breastfeed/formula feed baby on demand.It is a recommendation from WHO.
Do include as many varieties as possible in baby food.
Avoid honey,sugar(palm sugar,jaggery,palm jaggery),salt,milk till one year in any form in any quantity.
I would have incorporated three day wait in early stages of diet charts. It is said to be obsolete now.So you can ignore them and just watch for allergies carefully.
The above chart has been put up to just provide an idea and this can never be an alternate to any medical expert advice.
Always use sterilized bowls and spoons to feed baby.
Prefer open cup and spoon to bottles and sippers.
Please don’t include any entertainment factors in meal time.Distraction feeding should never be encouraged/
Avoid offering juices/soups/very thin porridge for regular meals before one year as they are said to replace breastfeed or formula feed after eight months.
For all recipes of healthy home made baby foods please refer here
All the above points are based on my knowledge and experience.I would kindly request to have a detailed word with your pediatrician always regarding any doubts.This piece of information is just an additional supportive guideline and definitely not equivalent to any doctor’s advice.