Many mothers wait expectantly for their children to start eating solid food. Well, I hate to break it to you but it's not all fun and games.
There are challenges like determining which foods are best, deciding between blending or mashing, dealing with your baby spitting up or refusing to eat the meticulously prepared food.
To make the transition easier, there are plenty of tips available on introducing solid foods. There quite a few different approaches but they have a lot in common. This is what I've learned.
Things to consider before introducing solids
? Unless it is unavoidable, don't introduce solid food before six months. Bear in mind that breast milk or formula are still a great source of much-needed nutrients. The additional food you will introduce is only supplementary.
? Make sure that your baby can sit unsupported and control his head well
? Observe your baby to see if he is interested in food (for instance, does he follow your hand or swallow when you eat)
Once you are ready
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? Start with simple grains like rice, oatmeal or maize porridge as they are easy to digest. They are also hypoallergenic, and are highly unlikely to cause an allergic reaction. Then gradually move to fruits and cooked foods.
? Introduce foods slowly, just a few spoons a day and one food at a time. Giving the same food for a few days will help you observe for an allergic reaction, which can be a rash around the mouth, vomiting or diarrhoea.
? You can start giving water after meals now. It will help to avoid constipation.
? Avoid fruits with citric acid (oranges, pineapples) for the first few months.
? It is always advisable to consult your paediatrician before introducing new food.
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