Posts Tagged ‘ solids ’

Rosie to the Rescue: Transitioning Your Baby From Liquid to Solids

Thursday, April 4th, 2013

Rosie Pope with her third childCheck out blog posts by multitalented mompreneur Rosie Pope every week at Parents.com! 

There are many transitions in a baby’s life that can cause stress for parents, especially first-time parents. One of these is the transition from an exclusively liquid diet (breast milk or formula) to one that also incorporates solids. With my first son, the concept of feeding him solids in addition to breast milk blew my mind. First of all, I had no idea what to cook for a baby. Second, I was afraid he might choke on these new solid foods. And third, I just couldn’t get my head around putting anything but milk into his wee mouth… What would happen?

To say I was a little paranoid is an understatement. After all, I am the mother that wanted to park outside the ER the first time I gave my son a peanut, so we’d be in the right place in case he had an allergic reaction. (I still don’t think this plan is totally crazy, by the way.) But these parental worries are why education is so important and the reason we must surround ourselves with people and sources that we trust. These sources of information can help us navigate each new stage, give us confidence that we are doing things in the best way for our family, and ease the worry that can cause us to miss out on the joys of these milestone moments.

The transition from a liquid to solid diet has been in the news a lot lately due to a recent study, conducted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), that found a large number of mothers were not following the American Academy of Pediatrics’ (AAP) guidelines on introducing solid foods. The AAP currently recommends introducing solids when your child is 6 months old and exclusively breastfeeding (or using formula when breastfeeding is not possible) up until that point. This is important because introducing solids too early is associated with obesity, celiac disease, diabetes, and eczema and may pose a choking risk if the child is not able to properly hold up his head. I also want to dispel the myth that eating more solid foods will dramatically help a child sleep through the night. Sleeping through the night is possible even on an exclusively liquid diet and is a learned ability, rather than a result of being overly “full.”

While it can sometimes be hard to fight your own poor habits or pass on advice from overly helpful family members and friends, it is important to remember that breakthroughs in science and research help us improve our parenting know-how over time to make present and future generations healthier than the last. With the AAP’s research about the implications of introducing solids too early—combined with the potential choking hazard and the fact that introducing solids early won’t help him learn to sleep through the night—it just doesn’t make sense not to follow these guidelines. Your child has a lifetime of chewing ahead of him, so there’s no need to start him on solids until your baby reaches the current AAP recommendation of 6 months and shows signs of readiness. Instead, enjoy the months of not having to whip up some pureed squash and having it hurled at you as your wee one tries to navigate a spoon while they last!

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American Baby’s Baby Booty: Get a Baby Food Maker!

Thursday, January 5th, 2012

Joe meets blueberries

It’s an incredible responsibility, giving a baby his first taste of solid food. I made a big deal out of giving my son Joe his first rice cereal—I had a whole little ceremony at my Dad’s house. So of course Joe spit it right back out like it was poison. You’d think I would have learned my lesson after my firstborn, Grace, rejected the steamed, pureed carrots her aunt lovingly made for her first serving of veggies. Here’s the good news: Both my kids have gone on to be champion eaters. They will try anything, and enjoy most foods, even at the tricky ages of 6 and 9. I’d pat myself on the back except I’m not sure that I had much to do with it, beyond making sure they tasted a lot of different flavors between the ages of 6 months and 2 years. A 1-year-old will put anything in his mouth, it doesn’t have to be bland or sweet. But I have friends who served up a wide variety of tastes and still ended up with a picky kid, so it’s not a foolproof way to get a little foodie, just a good practice to try.

Yesterday I read an entertaining entry in my coworker’ baby food blog. Heather Morgan Shott chronicles her adventures feeding her son, Mason, at High Chair Times. Over the holidays, Mason accidentally ate peanut butter for the first time, giving his mom a scare as she watched to make sure he didn’t have an allergic reaction. It’s one of those funny-because-nothing-happened stories, and was similar to a scene that played out with me and baby Grace. She was sitting on my lap in a Thai restaurant when I absentmindedly let her chew on a steamed vegetable that had been in peanut sauce. In my sleep-deprived stupor, I didn’t even think about it until the end of the meal, when all I could do is be thankful she’s not allergic.

This is all to say that I salute all of you who are feeding a baby, or about to start. You’ll hear advice from everyone, but there is no one guideline to follow on the baby-food journey. You can get a rough idea of how much food—and what type—babies eat, here. And are you into the idea of making purees yourself? Check out our new story on homemade fruit purees. Since so many moms are on the make-your-own kick, I’m going to give away one Baby Brezza One-Step Baby Food Maker, which retails for $100, and one Baby Bullet set, worth $90. They’ll be part of a baby food maker slideshow, which I promise to post shortly. You have through Wednesday, January 11th to post a comment and be entered to win one of the two baby food makers; read the full rules here. You can only post once a day. Goody luck!

 

 

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