Monday, 14 January 2013
Baby led weaning.
Weaning has begun! I thought I would do a more up to date post on what is happening in our lives today. Poppy is six months old now (such a big girl!) and so weaning has begun. It is recommended you wait until six months before giving your baby food so that they don't develop food allergies and so that their digestive system can handle food. If you think your baby may be ready before this it is best to wait as long as possible but mums know best, go with your instincts. I felt it was important to wait until Poppy could sit up really well as it doesn't make sense to feed a baby that can't sit up. If your baby is waking up a lot during the night this may not be hunger but may simply be a growth spurt or teething. For a few weeks before she was six months we would give Poppy a piece of cucumber to gum with us at dinner time to get her used to holding food. It is also great for teething as it it cool on the gums.
We have gone with the baby led weaning approach. This means no puréed food, but simply giving your baby soft finger food for example cooked carrots, parsnip,sweet potato, or soft fruit such as banana or avocado. She has had some mashed food too at her grandparents house. A lot of people worry about choking on chunks of food however babies are actually really good at eating. I am pretty sure babies have survived for years without food processors.... Just avoid small food or hard food. If you have waited until six months to wean then your baby will be ready to chomp and their hand eye coordination will be good enough to feed themselves. If you have weaned a little earlier maybe start with mashed avocado or banana (check out my post on mashed avocado for the family).
It is really nice for my partner to feed Poppy, it is something new for him and he is really enjoying watching her facial expressions while trying food. So far Poppy has not rejected any food, she has tried banana, avocado, red pepper, pear, carrot, potato, cucumber, sweet potato and parsnip. I think banana and carrot have been the favourites so far. We also give her a sippy cup with cool boiled water with her food however don't worry too much as milk will still provide most hydration. If you have exclusively breastfed then your baby will not need a bottle and can move straight on to a free flow sippy cup.
So what can I tell you about weaning..... It's messy. If you are weaning soon, BIBS, BIBS, BIBS!