When the baby meets the 5 or 6 months, it’s time to start including new foods into his diet. This incorporation must do of gradual form to be able to observe any allergy that the baby could suffer and identify the food that has produced it.
With the first meals the baby experiences new aromas, flavors and textures, so it is quite common to initially reject certain foods. It is for this reason that parents must arm themselves with patience and not to give up trying. We need to start with small amounts and with a vegetable or fruit at the same time; and once we have seen that he tolerates them well, we will start to mix them.
Baby’s first meals: When to incorporate solids?
Most babies are prepared to incorporate solids from 5 or 6 months, although each child manages their times. However, there are a number of indications that give notice regarding the baby’s preparation to eat these foods:
- Can he keep his head up? One of the signs is that the baby has control of his head and can get up alone or with some help.
- Are they interested in food? If the baby opens his mouth when some food approaches him or looks closely at how older people eat, it is probably time to incorporate solids.
- Can he pass the food from a spoon to his throat and swallow it? If your child can close his mouth around the spoon while using his lips and tongue to swallow the food, then he is probably ready to taste his first porridge.
- Weight gain directly proportional to the increase in appetite. In general, children are prepared to incorporate solids into their diet once they have doubled their birth weight. In parallel, you will notice that he has more and more appetite, staying hungry.
- Sit well when he have support. If the child manages to sit in his seat to eat while maintaining an upright position, it is an indication that it is the moment where he can gradually begin to swallow food well.
How to feed first solid foods?
Start small, with small scoops and talking to the baby during the process, because he probably won’t know what to do at the beginning and he may seem confused, play with food in his mouth or hand, totally reject it or wrinkle his nose as a gesture of disapproval or distrust.
Therefore, it should not frustrate you that his first solid foods end up in your baby’s hair, face, hands or bib. Prevent your child from eating while crying or turning while feeding and remember to increase the portions offered to the baby gradually.
The beginning is not easy or fast, because introducing solids requires high doses of patience. So consider that special and expected moment that you face with so much energy can become exhausting and exhausting due to the lack of habit of your little one. Do not get frustrated!
In this sense, pediatricians advise taking the first meals of babies calmly and affirm that the first semi-solids do not replace breast milk or add missing nutritional elements, there are baby preparations.
Similarly, experts add a tip: the mother should not be anxious or add “condiments” to arouse the child’s appetite. Many mothers fall into the gross error of adding honey, sugar, salt, oil to the porridge.
Of course, avoid that strategy which is not only unhealthy for children of such a young age, but prevents them from having good eating habits. Also stay away from commercial porridge with dyes and additives, because there is nothing like what is made at home. Be patient, the process takes time and dedication!
The time has come: what food do we start with?
As we have said, the idea of incorporating solids or semi-solids initially has a more learning function than nutrition, so it is preferably complementary to the mother’s breast. However, keep in mind that this is the key moment to start creating desired and healthy habits and routines.
At this stage, you can start giving him:
- Vegetable purees. It tends to be the first solid food that your child’s pediatrician will include in his diet. Once at a time, you must make potato, carrot and pumpkin porridge, in that order. Then you can make the famous tricolor puree, consisting of the mixture of both vegetables.
- Fruit porridge. In parallel, these will allow him to incorporate solids such as pear and apple, mainly in the form of compote, since they are less acidic, have a consistency that is easier to digest and a greater tolerance on the part of the baby. Then, in addition to increasing the amount offered to the baby you can open the range related to the variety and provide bananas and oranges, which should preferably be ripe. Any of the fruits can be offered in the form of porridge, in a natural state or cooked compote type, since it is present, as it will provide vitamins, proteins, minerals and fibers.
- Cereals. The next step to give your child the first meals is to incorporate cereals at the beginning, rice and small soup noodles later. And here it is essential to be careful because you must notice that these do not have gluten, a protein present in wheat, oats, barley and rye that can be poorly tolerated by minors, waking up celiac disease, which manifests itself through very diverse symptoms.
Experts suggest incorporating solid gradually, one at a time, waiting at least two days between food and food to perceive possible allergic reactions to any of them. Diarrhea, vomiting, swelling, rash and difficulty breathing are warning signs.
Needless to say, it is best to consult the pediatrician with what foods to start and when it is wise to add new ones. The doctor will probably advise against foods that are usually allergens such as soybeans, dairy products, eggs, wheat, fish, peanuts and chocolate.