I’m very excited to be working alongside Vital Baby as part of the #weaningwarriors campaign.
If you are a regular reader you will know that we are busy weaning our 9 month old baby girl. I run a fortnightly linky for other bloggers to link up their weaning baby and toddler food posts and recipes. You can find previous posts that have been added by clicking on the Weaning Wednesdays tab. There are some great tips and recipes there.
If you are soon to be or have recently started weaning, it can be a daunting process and Dr Rana Conway has 5 top tips for weaning that may help.
1. Offer your baby a wide range of foods so she gets used to different flavours and textures. Babies naturally like sweet foods to start with, but offer slightly bitter foods too such as spinach, broccoli and green beans. Don’t be surprised if these are rejected at first. Every time you try, the chances of success increase.
2. Let your baby set the pace. ‘Responsive feeding’ is key, so if your baby shows signs that he’s had enough don’t keep trying for one more spoonful. Teething and colds can put a baby off their food and pressure to eat will just cause food battles.
3. Don’t give too much milk, as this is one of the main reasons for babies not taking to solids. Babies under 12 months need 3-4 breast feeds or 500-600ml of formula a day and giving more than this can make them too full for meals.
4. Give your baby plenty of opportunities to handle food. Whether you’re starting with spoon-feeding or baby-led weaning, give some finger foods every day. Steamed vegetables such as carrot sticks or pieces of broccoli and soft fruit like bananas and pears are ideal.
5. Make meal times enjoyable by sitting and eating together whenever possible. If you relax and take your time it will help your baby develop a healthy relationship with food.
How you feed your baby, right from birth is such a contentious subject. It starts with the breast vs bottle debate and turns to the BLW or puree debate. I recently posted about our Mixed weaning approach and why it works for us.
Ava is now 9 months and we are still doing much the same. She enjoys feeding herself but is sometimes very hungry and gets frustrated with the speed in which she can feed herself. We find that after having some mashed food from a spoon she will happily sit and feed herself finger foods. Other mealtimes she will happily feed herself the whole meal. As Ava has multiple allergies feeding her what we are eating is not always possible. I’m going to be doing some posts on the kind of meals that she can manage herself that are safe for her allergies. If you follow me on Instagram I tend to post a lot of them there.
Reading through the tips above I feel that we do them all.
- She has a wide range of foods, one of her favourites being broccoli. We try to offer a variety of different tastes throughout each day.
- We definitely do responsive feeding as Dr Rana advises. Recently she has been ill with a chest infection and went back to having just milk.
- When you are breast feeding it is so hard to know how much they are having. She has slowly cut down the amount of feeds as her intake of food has increased. She now has a feed first thing then not again till mid afternoon. A bedtime feed and a couple in the night (unfortunately). She has recently dropped a mid morning feed and now has a snack instead.
- Ava loves finger foods and will eat so much herself. We started with steamed vegetables and pieces of fruit. She can now feed herself a pre loaded spoon and use the pincer grip to pick up little objects like raisins. One of her favourite foods is pitta sticks with violife cheese spread.
- We make an effort to eat with Ava, she eats at the same time as the boys too and loves sitting and eating with us. We find that she will happily sit trying foods in her high chair for long stretches of time which makes mealtimes easy and stress free for us.
Do you do the tips above?