After feeding my baby milk, milk and only milk 24/7, it was quite a moment when my paediatrician asked me to start solids for my son (the weaning was officially initiated). My first reaction was elation; my baby was growing into a big boy now. But the very next instant, I freaked out. Millions of questions started to pop up in my head. What food would be healthy for my baby; how could I avoid the risk of allergies and various, similarly confusing thoughts.
So friends, everything I have written here includes the information that I have gathered, based on my personal experience. We, as mothers want to provide the healthiest food possible, to our babies. Mums, brace yourselves, from my exclusive database, something yummy for your honey-drop ☺
- It is imperative to introduce a single food and let the baby continue with it for at least 3 days. This helps us to identify food allergies if any.
- Fruits are the safest to begin with as they aid digestion. I started with mashed bananas for my son. Again, do not mix different kinds of food. The baby’s digestive system can go for a toss. So let us not be over ambitious.
- Always remember to start with small portions of food, no over-feeding, as the baby’s digestive system is in the process of developing.
- Let your baby explore his food. My son used to get all messy at meal times, but he so loved it and looked forward to his ‘eating and discovering’ moments.
- A 6 months old baby needs milk in his diet, too. So solids need to be served between the milk breaks.
- Rice cereal is a good option and light on our baby’s small tummy. My son liked it, too. Dalia is great for both mum and baby.
- The period between 6 months to a year is a decent time to introduce oats, ragi, sooji and khichdi ( preferably with moong dal).
- My son loved cerelac. So, to enhance the taste and make it more ‘power packed’, I added a fruit to it ( mashed papaya, chikoo).
- Do not rush the egg, I introduced it only after my baby turned one.
- Mashed potatoes have a universal appeal amongst babies. My son still loves to eat it; healthy and awfully delicious.
- Ensure that dinner is light on the tummy; anything heavy can cause indigestion and hamper our baby’s sleep (especially for babies who are colic).
- Warm milk before bedtime can aid sleep in a few babies. But remember to have a gap of atleast a couple of hours between the two. Thumb rule is to have a light tummy.
Almost forgot, be VERY careful with nuts. So please mums, test allergic reactions before soaking those almonds.
Another important fact that we tend to ignore, once the baby turns a year old, try not to give her pureed or mashed food all the time. The habit of biting and chewing solid food needs to be inculcated in the baby. Try and introduce ‘finger foods’ to the baby now. I mentioned earlier as well that your baby should be allowed to feel the food, to enable her to be an independent eater.
Always remember, each baby is unique. We, as parents need to be observant and sensitive to our baby’s food preferences. So just relax and have fun with your baby, on this road to discovering the world yet again……through her. God bless ☺