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Thread: Pressure to start solids?

  1. #1

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    Question Pressure to start solids?

    Hi ladies,

    I'm just after a little guidance and perhaps a little advice! DS turns 6mths old in 2 weeks and I'm getting a LOT of pressure to start him on solids since he turned 4mths! Everyone's first question is have you started him on solids yet!? When are you going to, why haven't you etc etc.

    I don't really understand why there is all that pressure to start him on solids. Isn't the recommended age 6 months? I know some babies start earlier because they get hungry but he hasn't been like that at all yet.

    Have I done the wrong thing by taking him to 6mths before I start?

    I'm also a bit confused on how to start. I want to give him some baby cereal to start with, but do I give him a teaspoon after a bottle or before? Does it have to be the first bottle of the day or can I make it the second? How do I go about eventually cutting out a bottle and making it a meal instead?



    Any advice and tips you could give me would be great, as you can see I'm a little lost!

  2. #2

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    Hi littlebear

    You are doing everything perfectly but it is a little bit confusing and bewildering yet exciting to begin with. You are absolutely NOT doing anything wrong at all , good on you sticking to your guns and yep the WHO (I believe) recommend 6 months is the minimum age for solids. Some babies are started earlier for medical reasons such as reflux or colic (so I have heard) but IMHO normal healthy babies who are extra hungry before this are generally hungry for extra milk as their little bones are growing so quickly. I think there is so much pressure because some people are told by well meaning people who have done it 'this way' for years iykwim.

    I dont have a lot of advice on baby cereal as we practice Baby Led Solids here, but I do know that when first starting out you need to offer solids AFTER the milk. This is because milk is the most important 'food' at this stage. A great motto we always remind ourselves of, is that 'Food is fun until they're 1'. Maybe someone else can help out about the cereal stuff

    You really are going about it all great, remember you know your little one best x

  3. #3

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    I can't help you out with the cereal stuff, cos I do BLS with my lot, but I can tell you that you are definitely not doing anything wrong by waiting until he is 6 months old. The recommended age is still 6 months, and that hasn't changed, even though Heinz has baby food out there for 4-6 month olds

  4. #4

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    Definitely fine to wait till 6 months!
    Milk first from this age - they will get more nutrition from milk at this age than from solids, and I wouldn't expect your baby to drop milk feeds for some time yet. It varies of course, but generally speaking babies get most of their nutrition from milk till 12 months. If you follow your baby's lead, you'll find they will decide when they want to replace milk with solids and make that switch to real food.
    Are you interested in reading about baby-led solids at all? It's a good way to folllow your baby's lead and let them set the pace in terms of what, when and how much they eat. Basically, you make food available and they eat it, if they want to. It's a lot easier than cooking separate meals and pureeing

  5. #5

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    Wait till 6 months Its more to do with their little insides being able to cope better

    Are you breastfeeding (I know you said bottle, but is that EBM or formula)? If so a baby can go a very long time just n tha DD#1 had no interest in solids at 6 months and didn't really care much till about 10 months. I know a lady who's little ones dont start till 12 months (properly anyway)

  6. #6

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    dont worry about what others say....you will know when hes ready dont feel you have to start before you or your DS is ready.
    My DD started with rice cereal with a little puree apple I offer it about 30 minutes after a bottle.

  7. #7

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    Sorry I haven't had much time to reply until now! Thanks everyone for your advice I feel more confident in my decision now that I know others agree!

    Lily Dust - "Food is fun until they're one" I love that! Thanks!

    Marcellus - I would be interested in having a read about babyled solids. I hadn't really heard about it before. What would you recommend?

    Dedicated mummy - I keep telling everyone that it's more so they can digest it. He's on formula at the moment.

    Thanks again girls! xx

  8. #8

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    Hi LittleBear, you could start out by taking a look around in our Baby Led Solids forum.
    Gill Rapley (is that her?) has written about it, I think maybe the ABA has materials on it too.
    Basically, you make food available to your baby and let them feed themselves. So no pureeing special meals for them. It's easy to start with things they can hold, like steamed vegies cut into strips, or pieces of soft fruit, or bread, cheese, and so on. They'll play to start with and it'll probably take some time before they eat much, but that's ok. When they need the food they'll eat it.

    We started DS at around 6 months, giving him brocolli, carrot, pumpkin and that sort of thing. Just put it on his tray and let him play. He ate a bit from the start, but it wasn't till he was about 8 months old that suddenly he was really hungry for it (this coincided with his first teeth).

    I think this way is good because you *know* they are really ready for it and want it. And you do'nt have to mess around preparing separate meals. With a little forward planning you can simply include something in every meal you prepare for yourself that is also appropriate for your baby, and it can mean they're eating just what you're having quite early on.
    It is messy, but solids always are until they get better at eating - practice makes perfect.

  9. #9

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    Hi Littlebear, I just wanted to say you're not alone - we are getting alot of pressure to start DD on solids and she is only 4.5months. The reaction we get when we say we are happy to wait until 6 months is usually such shock and horror it can be easy to make us question our decision. However, we are still waiting We are going down the BLS path, so I can't help you with spoon feeding etc, but just wanted to reassure you you're not alone and good luck when you do start. And no, you haven't done the wrong thing by waiting at all

  10. #10

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    Just want to pop in and back up what the others here have said.

    Your baby will lead you as to what they need. This is where baby led solids is so wonderful, your child will play with the food you offer and only ingest what they need. As long as you are prioritising with milk it makes learning to eat solids fun, natural and easy.

    My DD was also a bit of a late starter, she began solids at about 8 months and we went the baby led option also. I was amazed at how quickly her dexterity developed as she played with her food and began spoon feeding herself at an early age. In addition, her enjoyment of food has always been good and she enthusiastically will try anything. I put this down to the fact that she has always had control over her diet.

    It is very hard when you have lots of people around you with attitudes that do not match your own (I had a SIL attempting to force feed my DD at 7 months as she could not believe that she was not eating solids but DD refused still.) As long as you follow your instincts which are very rarely wrong, and if you are unsure search out answers - just as you are doing here. Have faith in your little one, they will tell you what they need!!

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