Baby weaning foods to avoid
Foods to avoid giving babies and young children
Babies should not eat much salt, as it's not good for their kidneys.
Do not add salt to your baby's food or cooking water, and do not use stock cubes or gravy, as they're often high in salt.
Remember this when you're cooking for the family if you plan to give the same food to your baby.
Avoid salty foods like:
- chips with added salt
- ready meals
Your baby does not need sugar.
By avoiding sugary snacks and drinks (including fruit juice and other fruit drinks), you'll help prevent tooth decay.
Do not give your child too many foods that are high in saturated fat, such as crisps, biscuits and cakes.
Checking the nutrition labels can help you choose foods that are lower in saturated fat.
See more on food labels.
Occasionally, honey contains bacteria that can produce toxins in a baby's intestines, leading to infant botulism, which is a very serious illness.
Do not give your child honey until they're over 1 year old. Honey is a sugar, so avoiding it will also help prevent tooth decay.
Whole nuts and peanuts
Whole nuts and peanuts should not be given to children under 5 years old, as they can choke on them.
You can give your baby nuts and peanuts from around 6 months old, as long as they're crushed, ground or a smooth nut or peanut butter.
If there's a history of food allergies or other allergies in your family, talk to your GP or health visitor before introducing nuts and peanuts.
See more on food allergies in babies and young children.
Cheese can form part of a healthy, balanced diet for babies and young children, and provides calcium, protein and vitamins.
Babies can eat pasteurised full-fat cheese from 6 months old. This includes hard cheeses, such as mild cheddar cheese, cottage cheese and cream cheese.
Babies and young children should not eat mould-ripened soft cheeses, such as brie or camembert, or ripened goats' milk cheese and soft blue-veined cheese, such as roquefort. There's a higher risk that these cheeses might carry a bacteria called listeria.
Many cheeses are made from unpasteurised milk. It's better to avoid these because of the risk of listeria.
You can check labels on cheeses to make sure they're made from pasteurised milk.
But these cheeses can be used as part of a cooked recipe as listeria is killed by cooking. Baked brie, for example, is a safer option.
Raw and lightly cooked eggs
Babies can have eggs from around 6 months.
If the eggs are hens' eggs and they have a red lion stamped on them, or you see a red lion with the words "British Lion Quality" on the box, it's fine for your baby to have them raw (for example, in homemade mayonnaise) or lightly cooked.
Hens' eggs that do not have the red lion mark should be cooked until both the white and yolk are solid. So should duck, goose or quail eggs.
Avoid raw eggs, including uncooked cake mixture, homemade ice creams, homemade mayonnaise, or desserts that contain uncooked egg that you cannot confirm are red lion stamped.
Children under 5 years old should not have rice drinks as a substitute for breast milk or infant formula (or cows' milk after 1 year old) as they may contain too much arsenic.
Arsenic is found naturally in the environment and can find its way into our food and water.
Rice tends to take up more arsenic than other grains, but this does not mean that you or your baby cannot eat rice.
In the UK, there are maximum levels of inorganic arsenic allowed in rice and rice products, and even stricter levels are set for foods intended for young children.
Do not worry if your child has already had rice drinks. There's no immediate risk to them, but it's best to switch to a different kind of milk.
Raw jelly cubes
Raw jelly cubes can be a choking hazard for babies and young children.
If you're making jelly from raw jelly cubes, make sure you always follow the manufacturers' instructions.
Raw or lightly cooked shellfish, such as mussels, clams and oysters, can increase the risk of food poisoning, so it's best not to give it to babies.
Shark, swordfish and marlin
Do not give your baby shark, swordfish or marlin. The amount of mercury in these fish can affect the development of a baby's nervous system.
For more information and advice about babies and food, see:
- food allergies in babies and young children
- your baby's first solid foods
- baby and toddler meal ideas
Your baby's first solid foods
When to start introducing solid foods
Introducing your baby to solid foods, sometimes called complementary feeding or weaning, should start when your baby is around 6 months old.
At the beginning, how much your baby eats is less important than getting them used to the idea of eating.
They'll still be getting most of their energy and nutrients from breast milk or first infant formula.
Giving your baby a variety of foods, alongside breast or formula milk, from around 6 months of age will help set your child up for a lifetime of healthier eating.
Gradually, you'll be able to increase the amount and variety of food your baby eats until they can eat the same foods as the rest of the family, in smaller portions.
If your baby was born prematurely, ask your health visitor or GP for advice on when to start introducing solid foods.
Why wait until around 6 months to introduce solids?
It’s a good idea to wait until around 6 months before introducing solid foods because:
- breast milk or first infant formula provide the energy and nutrients your baby needs until they're around 6 months old (with the exception of vitamin D in some cases)
- if you're breastfeeding, feeding only breast milk up to around 6 months of age will help protect your baby against illness and infections
- waiting until around 6 months gives your baby time to develop so they can cope fully with solid foods – this includes solid foods made into purées, cereals and baby rice added to milk
- your baby will be more able to feed themselves
- your baby will be better at moving food around their mouth, chewing and swallowing it – this may mean they'll be able to progress to a range of tastes and textures (such as mashed, lumpy and finger foods) more quickly, and may not need smooth, blended foods at all
Signs your baby is ready for solid foods
There are 3 clear signs which, when they appear together from around 6 months of age, show your baby is ready for their first solid foods alongside breast milk or first infant formula.
They'll be able to:
- stay in a sitting position and hold their head steady
- co-ordinate their eyes, hands and mouth so they can look at the food, pick it up and put it in their mouth by themselves
- swallow food (rather than spit it back out)
The following behaviours can be mistaken by parents as signs that their baby is ready for solid foods:
- chewing their fists
- waking up in the night (more than usual)
- wanting extra milk feeds
These are all normal behaviours for babies and not necessarily a sign that they're hungry or ready to start solid food.
Starting solid foods will not make your baby any more likely to sleep through the night. Sometimes a little extra milk will help until they're ready for solid foods.
Get tips to help your baby sleep well
How to start solid foods
In the beginning your baby will only need a small amount of food before their usual milk feed.
Do not worry about how much they eat. The most important thing is getting them used to new tastes and textures, and learning how to move solid foods around their mouths and how to swallow them.
They'll still be getting most of their energy and nutrients from breast milk or infant formula.
There are some foods to avoid giving to your baby. For example, do not add sugar or salt (including stock cubes and gravy) to your baby's food or cooking water.
Babies should not eat salty foods as it's not good for their kidneys, and sugar can cause tooth decay.
Tips to get your baby off to a good start with solid foods:
- Eating is a whole new skill. Some babies learn to accept new foods and textures more quickly than others. Keep trying, and give your baby lots of encouragement and praise.
- Allow plenty of time, especially at first.
- Go at your baby's pace and let them show you when they're hungry or full. Stop when your baby shows signs that they've had enough. This could be firmly closing their mouth or turning their head away. If you're using a spoon, wait for your baby to open their mouth before you offer the food. Do not force your baby to eat. Wait until the next time if they're not interested this time.
- Be patient and keep offering a variety of foods, even the ones they do not seem to like. It may take 10 tries or more for your baby to get used to new foods, flavours and textures. There will be days when they eat more, some when they eat less, and then days when they reject everything. Do not worry, this is perfectly normal.
- Let your baby enjoy touching and holding the food. Allow them to feed themselves, using their fingers, as soon as they show an interest. If you're using a spoon, your baby may like to hold it or another spoon to try feeding themselves.
- Keep distractions to a minimum during mealtimes and avoid sitting your baby in front of the television, phone or tablet.
- Show them how you eat. Babies copy their parents and other children. Sit down together for family mealtimes as much as possible.
Once you've started introducing solid foods from around 6 months of age, try to move your baby on from puréed or blended foods to mashed, lumpy or finger foods as soon as they can manage them.
This helps them learn how to chew, move solid food around their mouth and swallow.
Some babies like to start with mashed, lumpy or finger foods.
Other babies need a little longer to get used to new textures, so may prefer smooth or blended foods on a spoon at first.
Just keep offering them lumpy textures and they'll eventually get used to it.
Safety and hygiene
When introducing your baby to solid foods, it's important to take extra care to not put them at risk.
Key food safety and hygiene advice:
- always wash your hands before preparing food and keep surfaces clean
- cool hot food and test it before giving it to your baby
- wash and peel fruit and raw vegetables
- avoid hard foods like whole nuts, or raw carrot or apple
- remove hard pips and stones from fruits, and bones from meat or fish
- cut small, round foods, like grapes and cherry tomatoes, into small pieces
- eggs produced under the British Lion Code of Practice (stamped with the red lion) are considered very low risk for salmonella and safe for babies to eat partially cooked
Always stay with your baby when they're eating in case they start to choke.
Choking is different from gagging. Your baby may gag when you introduce solid foods.
This is because they're learning how to deal with solid foods and regulate the amount of food they can manage to chew and swallow at one time.
If your baby is gagging:
- their eyes may water
- they might push their tongue forward (or out of their mouth)
- they might retch to bring the food forward in their mouth or vomit
- High chair. Your baby needs to be sitting safely in an upright position (so they can swallow properly). Always use a securely fitted safety harness in a high chair. Never leave babies unattended on raised surfaces.
- Plastic or pelican bibs. It's going to be messy at first!
- Soft weaning spoons are gentler on your baby's gums.
- Small plastic bowl. You may find it useful to get a special weaning bowl with a suction base to keep the bowl in place.
- First cup. Introduce a cup from around 6 months and offer sips of water with meals. Using an open cup or a free-flow cup without a valve will help your baby learn to sip and is better for their teeth.
- A messy mat or newspaper sheets under the high chair to catch most of the mess.
- Plastic containers and ice cube trays can be helpful for batch cooking and freezing small portions.
Find out more:
- tips to help your baby enjoy new foods
- children's food: safety and hygiene
- foods to avoid giving babies and young children
- how to stop a child from choking
- baby and toddler safety
Feeding your baby: from 0 to 6 months
Breast milk is the best food your baby can have during their first 6 months of life.
It's free, always available and at the perfect temperature, and is tailor-made for your baby.
First infant formula is the only suitable alternative if you do not breastfeed or choose to supplement breast milk.
Other milks or milk substitutes, including cows' milk, should not be introduced as a main drink until 12 months of age.
"Follow-on" formula is not suitable for babies under 6 months, and you do not need to introduce it after 6 months.
Babies do not need baby rice to help them move to solid foods or sleep better.
When using a bottle, do not put anything (such as sugar or cereals) in it other than breast milk or infant formula.
Vitamins for babies
It's recommended that breastfed babies are given a daily supplement containing 8.5 to 10 micrograms (µg) of vitamin D from birth, whether or not you're taking a supplement containing vitamin D yourself.
Babies having 500mls (about a pint) or more of formula a day should not be given vitamin supplements.
This is because formula is fortified with vitamin D and other nutrients.
All children aged 6 months to 5 years should be given vitamin supplements containing vitamins A, C and D every day.
Find out more:
- benefits of breastfeeding
- how to make up baby formula
- vitamins for children
Feeding your baby: from around 6 months
When they first start having solid foods, babies do not need 3 meals a day. Babies have tiny tummies, so start by offering them small amounts of food (just a few pieces, or teaspoons of food).
Pick a time that suits you both, when you do not feel rushed and your baby is not too tired.
Start offering them food before their usual milk feed as they might not be interested if they're full, but do not wait until your baby is too hungry.
Allow plenty of time and let your baby go at their own pace.
Keep offering different foods, even foods your baby has already rejected.
It can take 10 tries or more before your baby will accept a new food or texture, particularly as they get older.
Your baby will still be getting most of their energy and nutrients from breast milk or first infant formula.
Breast milk or infant formula should be their main drink during the first year. Do not give them whole cows' (or goats' or sheep's) milk as a drink until they're 1 year old.
You can continue breastfeeding for as long as you both want.
Introduce a cup from around 6 months and offer sips of water with meals. Using an open cup or a free-flow cup without a valve will help your baby learn to sip and is better for their teeth.
You might want to start with single vegetables and fruits.
Try mashed or soft cooked sticks of parsnip, broccoli, potato, yam, sweet potato, carrot, apple or pear.
Include vegetables that are not sweet, such as broccoli, cauliflower and spinach.
This will help your baby get used to a range of flavours (rather than just the sweeter ones, like carrots and sweet potato) and might help prevent them being fussy eaters as they grow up.
Make sure any cooked food has cooled right down before offering it to your baby.
Foods containing allergens (such as peanuts, hens' eggs, gluten and fish) can be introduced from around 6 months of age, 1 at a time and in small amounts so you can spot any reaction.
Cows' milk can be used in cooking or mixed with food from around 6 months of age, but should not be given as a drink until your baby is 1 year old.
Full-fat dairy products, such as pasteurised cheese and plain yoghurt or fromage frais, can be given from around 6 months of age. Choose products with no added sugar.
Remember, babies do not need salt or sugar added to their food (or cooking water).
As soon as your baby starts solid foods, encourage them to be involved in mealtimes and have fun touching, holding and exploring food.
Let them feed themselves with their fingers when they want to. This helps develop fine motor skills and hand-eye co-ordination.
Your baby can show you how much they want to eat, and it gets them familiar with different types and textures of food.
Offering your baby finger foods at each meal is a good way to help them learn to self-feed.
Finger food is food that's cut up into pieces big enough for your baby to hold in their fist with a bit sticking out.
Pieces about the size of your own finger work well.
Start off with finger foods that break up easily in their mouth and are long enough for them to grip.
Avoid hard food, such as whole nuts or raw carrots and apples, to reduce the risk of choking.
Examples of finger foods include:
- soft cooked vegetables, such as carrot, broccoli, cauliflower, parsnip, butternut squash
- fruit (soft, or cooked without adding sugar), such as apple, pear, peach, melon, banana
- grabbable bits of avocado
- cooked starchy foods, such as potato, sweet potato, cassava, pasta, noodles, chapatti, rice
- pulses, such as beans and lentils
- fish without bones
- hardboiled eggs
- meat without bones, such as chicken and lamb
- sticks of pasteurised full-fat hard cheese (choose lower salt options)
Baby-led weaning means giving your baby only finger foods and letting them feed themselves from the start instead of feeding them puréed or mashed food on a spoon.
Some parents prefer baby-led weaning to spoon feeding, while others do a combination of both.
There's no right or wrong way. The most important thing is that your baby eats a wide variety of food and gets all the nutrients they need.
There's no more risk of choking when a baby feeds themselves than when they're fed with a spoon.
Find out more:
- help your baby enjoy new foods
- drinks and cups for babies and young children
- food allergies in babies and young children
- foods to avoid giving babies and young children
Feeding your baby: from 7 to 9 months
From about 7 months, your baby will gradually move towards eating 3 meals a day (breakfast, lunch and tea), in addition to their usual milk feeds, which may be around 4 a day (for example, on waking, after lunch, after tea and before bed).
As your baby eats more solid foods, they may want less milk at each feed or even drop a milk feed altogether.
If you're breastfeeding, your baby will adapt their feeds according to how much food they're having.
As a guide, formula-fed babies may need around 600ml of milk a day.
Gradually increase the amount and variety of food your baby is offered to ensure they get the energy and nutrients they need.
Try to include food that contains iron, such as meat, fish, fortified breakfast cereals, dark green vegetables, beans and lentils, at each meal.
Your baby's diet should consist of a variety of the following:
- fruit and vegetables, including ones with bitter flavours, such as broccoli, cauliflower, spinach and cabbage
- potatoes, bread, rice, pasta and other starchy foods
- beans, pulses, fish, eggs, meat and other non-dairy sources of protein
- pasteurised full-fat dairy products, such as plain yoghurt and cheese (choose lower salt options)
As your baby becomes a more confident eater, remember to offer them more mashed, lumpy and finger foods.
Providing finger foods as part of each meal helps encourage infants to feed themselves, develop hand and eye co-ordination, and learn to bite off, chew and swallow pieces of soft food.
Remember, babies do not need salt or sugar added to their food (or cooking water).
Feeding your baby: from 10 to 12 months
From about 10 months, your baby should now be having 3 meals a day (breakfast, lunch and tea), in addition to their usual milk feeds.
Around this age, your baby may have about 3 milk feeds a day (for instance, after breakfast, after lunch and before bed).
Breastfed babies will adapt their milk consumption as their food intake changes.
As a guide, babies fed infant formula will drink about 400ml daily.
Remember that formula-fed babies should take a vitamin D supplement if they're having less than 500ml of formula a day.
All breastfed babies should take a vitamin D supplement.
By now, your baby should be enjoying a wide range of tastes and textures.
They should be able to manage a wider range of finger foods, and be able to pick up small pieces of food and move them to their mouth. They'll use a cup with more confidence.
Lunches and teas can include a main course, and a fruit or unsweetened dairy-based dessert, to move eating patterns closer to those of children over 1 year.
As your baby grows, eating together as a family encourages them to develop good eating habits.
Remember, babies do not need salt or sugar added to their food (or cooking water).
Feeding your baby: from 12 months
From 12 months, your child will be eating 3 meals a day containing a variety of different foods, including:
- a minimum of 4 servings a day of starchy food, such as potatoes, bread and rice
- a minimum of 4 servings a day of fruit and vegetables
- a minimum of 350ml milk or 2 servings of dairy products (or alternatives)
- a minimum of 1 serving a day of protein from animal sources (meat, fish and eggs) or 2 from vegetable sources (dhal, beans, chickpeas and lentils)
Your child may also need 2 healthy snacks in between meals.
Go for things like:
- fresh fruits, such as apple, banana or small pieces of soft, ripe, peeled pear or peach
- cooked or raw vegetable, such as broccoli florets, carrot sticks or cucumber sticks
- pasteurised plain full-fat yoghurt
- sticks of cheese (choose a lower salt option)
- toast, pitta or chapatti fingers
- unsalted and unsweetened rice or corn cakes
The World Health Organization recommends that all babies are breastfed for up to 2 years or longer.
You can keep breastfeeding for as long as it suits you both, but your child will need less breast milk to make room for more foods.
Once your child is 12 months old, infant formula is not needed and toddler milks, growing-up milks and goodnight milks are also unnecessary.
Your baby can now drink whole cows' milk. Choose full-fat dairy products, as children under 2 years old need the vitamins and extra energy found in them.
From 2 years old, if they're a good eater and growing well, they can have semi-skimmed milk.
From 5 years old, 1% fat and skimmed milk is OK.
You can give your child unsweetened calcium-fortified milk alternatives, such as soya, oat or almond drinks, from the age of 1 as part of a healthy, balanced diet.
Children under 5 years old should not be given rice drinks because of the levels of arsenic in these products.
Find out more:
- what to feed young children
- foods to avoid giving babies and young children
- drinks and cups for babies and young children
- vitamins for children
Get Start4Life pregnancy and baby emails
For information and advice you can trust, sign up for weekly Start4Life pregnancy and baby emails.
Rules for the introduction of complementary foods for a child 4 - 12 months: the first complementary foods, menus, diagrams, tables, principles of nutrition for a baby
Modern principles of complementary foods for children is a kind of fusion of practical experience and the latest scientific developments. They are based on the recommendations of the European Association of Pediatric Gastroenterologists, Hepatologists, Nutritionists ESPGHAN , the American Academy of Pediatrics AAP and national recommendations of relevant ministries and associations. nine0004
Complementary foods: online course
Modern recommendations are based on the analysis of the results of many studies on the composition, timing of the introduction of complementary foods in Europe for healthy full-term newborns, taking into account various aspects of the introduction of complementary foods, its impact on physical and mental development. Timely introduction of complementary foods contributes to the optimal development of all systems and organs of the child, physical parameters, psychomotor development, and the activity of the nervous system. The period of introduction of complementary foods is very important for the growth and development of the child, as well as an outstanding stage in the transition of the child from breastfeeding to feeding from the general table. nine0013
- It is inappropriate to develop separate recommendations for the introduction of complementary foods for breastfed or artificially fed children, the approaches in these cases are the same
- Breastmilk mothers remains the gold standard exclusive breastfeeding for at least 4 months (17 weeks) of an infant's life, up to 6 months (26 weeks), the standard of exclusive or predominant breastfeeding
- The digestive tract and kidney function are mature enough for a baby to accept complementary foods at 4 months of age, and between 5 and 6 months the baby develops the necessary motor skills to consume solid foods. Therefore, at this age, it is important to give food of the right consistency and in the right way
- A well-nourished mother can provide all the nutrients, vitamins, and minerals her baby needs through exclusive breastfeeding up to a maximum of 6 months of age
- Some children may need iron supplementation earlier than 6 months
- It is important to continue breastfeeding in parallel with the introduction of complementary foods. This has been shown to reduce the risk of gastrointestinal and respiratory infections, as well as hospitalizations in a child
- Comparing the initiation of complementary foods at 4 or 6 months of age, no significant differences were found in the effect on growth and body weight, the development of obesity during the first 3 years of life
- At the same time, a high risk of developing overweight and obesity has been established with the introduction of complementary foods before 4 months of age
- Complementary foods (solid or liquid food other than breast milk or infant formula) should be started no earlier than 4 months and no later than 6 months
- With age, with the introduction of complementary foods, the child should be offered food varied in texture, texture, taste, smell
- Children have an innate tendency to distinguish and prefer sweet and salty foods, reluctantly eat bitter, which we cannot change. But we can shape and adjust the taste preferences of the child through training, systematically offering the child foods with different tastes, including sour, bitter green vegetables
- Whole cow's milk Not recommended for infants under 12 months of age. The use of cow's milk is associated with the intake of an increased amount of energy, protein, fat, and lower - iron. Therefore, children who consumed large amounts of cow's milk at an early age had a higher risk of developing iron deficiency anemia
- Eating more protein when complementary foods increase the risk of overweight and obesity, especially in individuals with a predisposition to this, so protein intake should not exceed 15% of energy intake during the day
- The baby's need for iron is very high during the entire period of complementary feeding, so it is necessary to ensure the provision of iron-rich foods, especially for breast-fed children
- Allergenic products can be administered from the age of 4 months at any time, since it is during this period that the formation of immune tolerance to the allergen occurs. For example, children at high risk of developing allergic reactions to peanuts should be administered at 4-12 months of age under specialist supervision. No relationship was found between the timing of the introduction of allergenic complementary foods and the development of allergic or immunological diseases. However, this does not mean the need for early introduction of allergenic products to everyone, but it emphasizes that there is no need to postpone the introduction of allergenic products after 4 months for a longer period; nine0034
- Gluten may be offered to a child aged 4-12 months, however large amounts of gluten should be avoided during the first weeks after initiation of its introduction, thereafter a safe amount has not been established. The type of feeding (breast/artificial) was not identified with the introduction of gluten to reduce the risk of developing celiac disease, type 1 diabetes;
- Sugar or salt should not be added to complementary foods, and sweetened drinks and juices should be avoided. Sugary drinks are liked by babies in the first months, but if they are not given, but after 6 months, the children no longer like them very much. Sugar affects future eating behavior. Sugar is an important factor in the development of caries - it contributes to caries, as glucans can be formed, which increase the adhesion of bacteria to tooth enamel, disrupt the diffusion balance of acid and buffer systems, which ultimately contributes to damage to the enamel. nine0034
- Vegetarian diets are contraindicated in young children due to the risk of vitamin B12, iron, zinc, folate, long-chain fatty acid, protein and calcium deficiencies, which can lead to irreversible adverse effects and impaired cognitive development;
- Vegetarian diet can only be used under the close supervision of a doctor and nutritionist, with the obligatory additional administration of vitamins B, D, iron, zinc, calcium, proteins, PUFAs, which can ensure the appropriate growth and development of the child. It is important that parents should be aware of the risk of irreversible harmful consequences (mental disability, death of the child) that may develop if they do not follow the recommendations of specialists. nine0034
The General Rules for the introduction of complementary foods for children of the first year of life:
- Introduce the first feeding It is better in the morning feeding 9-11 in the morning to trace the reaction of the child to the new product.
- Without added sugar and salt .
- Give the first complementary food to the child when he is calm and not tired .
- Start with 0.5-2 teaspoons. If the child refuses, do not insist, try to give later or the next day.
- If the reaction is normal - no rash, no skin changes, no stool changes, double the dose the next day. Gradually bring the first complementary foods of the child to the age norm 80-200 g
- If there is an allergic reaction or other intolerance reaction - refuse to introduce this complementary food for three days, if the adverse reaction occurs again - do not give this product, contact your pediatrician. nine0034
- Each subsequent new complementary food must be one-component only: marrow, cabbage, broccoli, buckwheat, meat, etc.
- Mixed food dish give when the child has already become acquainted with all the products separately.
- It is not advisable to introduce new foods three days before and after vaccinations.
If you are thinking about introducing complementary foods, then your child should already have certain signs of readiness for this:
- Holds head
- Able to stand alone, practically without support, sit on a special high chair with side support
- Opens mouth when a spoonful of food is brought
- Turns away from a spoonful of food when not hungry
- Closes mouth with spoon in mouth holds food in mouth and then swallows rather than pushing or spitting it out
The first complementary foods at 4 months
The age of 4 months as the minimum for the introduction of complementary foods was also chosen because at 4 months the child's gastrointestinal tract becomes more mature: the initially increased permeability of the small intestine mucosa decreases, the number of digestive enzymes, a sufficient level of local immunity is formed, the child acquires the ability to swallow semi-liquid and thicker food, associated with the extinction of the “spoon ejection reflex”. nine0013
Therefore, to the question whether it is necessary to give complementary foods to a 3-month-old baby , one can unequivocally answer: no, it's too early!
But 4 months, this is the time when you can think about the introduction of complementary foods. At the same time, it should be remembered that at the age of 4 months, the child has enough mother's milk or a highly adapted milk formula for its full development. In addition, when they talk about complementary foods at 4 months, they usually mean the end of the 4th month of life. It is important to continue breastfeeding in parallel with the introduction of complementary foods. nine0013
Video: Body in 4 months
If you introduce complementary foods at the 4th month of the child -usually one-component vegetable or fruit puree if the child does not gain weight well enough well , then it can be gluten-free porridges: rice and buckwheat . It is better to start with vegetable puree. Kids are smart and if he tries a sweeter fruit puree, he can refuse vegetable puree for quite some time and you may have difficulty introducing this very healthy dish. nine0013
What is useful in vegetable supplements and what is the best way to prepare it?
Vegetable puree - for the first feeding can be prepared from cauliflower, zucchini, pumpkin, broccoli - these are low-allergenic foods, are among the ten most useful vegetables in the diet of children, contain a large amount of healthy proteins, fiber and vitamins, microelements ! Fiber helps move food through the digestive tract and promote beneficial microflora in the gut. Pectins absorb and remove toxins from the baby's body. Vegetables have a positive effect on the acid-base balance of the body, creating conditions for the proper functioning of all organs and systems. nine0013
Cauliflower - is a good source of fiber, protein, minerals and vitamins: A, B1, B2, B3 (PP), B6, as well as a small amount of vitamins K, D and tocopherol (vitamin E). In the inflorescences of cabbage there is a lot of magnesium, sodium, potassium, phosphorus, calcium, iron. It contains twice as much iron as green peas, peppers and lettuce. Cauliflower protein is easily digestible and its content is quite high. Cauliflower protein contains essential vitamin U (methionine). It is one of the essential amino acids that cannot be synthesized by the human body. Other essential amino acids are also present in a small amount: arginine, tryptophan. nine0013
Zucchini - rich in vitamins and microelements. It contains potassium, magnesium, phosphorus, calcium, vitamins C, B1 and B2 and others, folic acid. Which plays an important role in the processes of hematopoiesis. Zucchini is rich in such important trace elements as iron and copper. They are necessary for the formation of nervous tissue, normalization of metabolism, as well as for the formation of hemoglobin, which is a good prevention of anemia.
Broccoli is a very healthy vegetable that is a type of cauliflower. Pleasant soft taste and good digestibility of the product, unique composition have a beneficial effect on the health of both adults and children. Eat unopened cabbage inflorescences. This is also a low-allergenic vegetable, rich in protein, fiber, vitamins, calcium, iron, trace elements and even phytoncides. The content of calcium and magnesium is sufficient to balance the functioning of the nervous system, ensure the normal regulation of the child's sleep and wake cycle, and good stress resistance. A child with such nutrition becomes calmer, less excited and naughty. nine0013
Broccoli is the leader in choline and methionine content. Only 50 g of broccoli provides the baby with a full set of nutrients for a day.
Pumpkin - the largest vegetable on Earth. It is one of the ten most useful vegetables in the diet of children, contains a large amount of useful proteins, fiber and vitamins, including beta-carotene, vitamin C, E, K, iron, potassium, magnesium, trace elements that are indispensable for children's nutrition, as they strengthen immunity and help fight inflammation, have a beneficial effect on the nervous system. By the content of carotene, pumpkin exceeds carrots by 5 times. nine0013
Vitamins and microelements contained in pumpkin help the child grow, provide healthy sleep, are responsible for the condition of the skin and eyes, improve metabolic processes, and accelerate the removal of harmful substances from the child's body. Due to its beneficial qualities, pumpkin can be one of the first types of complementary foods for an infant.
All vegetable purees have a specific vegetable smell, this is absolutely normal
Introduction of vegetable puree
Vegetables should be introduced into the child's menu gradually. Start giving each new vegetable in the form of a monocomponent puree in the amount of ½ teaspoon, preferably at breakfast, so you can track the manifestations of food allergies or intolerance reactions to this product. If all is well, then the next day, offer him a teaspoon. So gradually you need to bring the portion to 50-100 grams. A serving of vegetable puree per day for an 8-month-old baby is approximately 80 grams. In a year, you can increase up to 150 grams. The next product can be administered no earlier than 4-5 days later. If a child has skin rashes, his stool has changed, then you need to remove the product from the diet and consult a pediatrician. nine0013
If the child does not like the dish, for example, broccoli, do not give up and continue to offer this vegetable in small quantities - 1-2 spoons a day, maybe not even once, but 2-3 times before meals, and after 7 - 10, and sometimes 15 days, the baby will get used to the new taste. This diversifies the diet, will help form the right taste habits in the child.
Fruit puree introduction
Fruit puree is a definite alternative and addition to vegetables. It can be made from apples, bananas - by the way, do you know what a berry is?, sweet varieties of pears. These fruits contain substances useful for babies, vitamins and minerals, including iron, which is extremely necessary for children. Prune puree is somewhat separate, it has a good effect on the baby's digestion, especially with a tendency to constipation, and, of course, also contains many useful substances.
Porridges in the nutrition of a child in the first year of life. nine0005
Porridge can be introduced into the baby's diet at the end of 4 months or at the fifth, sixth month of life. As a rule, they go as a second food after vegetable or fruit puree. But if your child is not gaining weight very well, or you have been feeding your child with breast milk or infant formula until almost the end of 6 months, then complementary foods can be started with the introduction of cereals.
It is important to start with one-component, low-allergenic cereals which does not contain gluten : this is buckwheat, rice, corn porridge .
gluten-containing cereals include: wheat, oats, rye, barley, millet .
According to modern data , the period of introduction of gluten into the child's diet is not of fundamental importance, but the latest recommendations draw attention to the fact that its amount in the baby's diet should not be large. Therefore, it is better to add semolina and oatmeal to other porridge in a limited amount, and not to give it on its own. No relationship was found between the timing of the start of complementary foods that contain gluten and the development of celiac disease in a child. If your child hasn't tried porridge yet, start with a dairy-free, gluten-free, one-ingredient buckwheat or rice porridge. nine0013
Rice - very useful for growing baby. It has a low content of vegetable proteins, therefore it is easily digested and is especially useful for toddlers with unstable stools. Rice has a high nutritional value and, to a certain extent, protects the delicate intestines of the baby due to its enveloping effect. This is a hearty and nutritious dish with a good content of carbohydrates and proteins, potassium and magnesium, calcium and phosphorus, beneficial amino acids and vitamins. It replenishes energy costs, energizes and gives strength. Rice is not recommended for overweight children and those who suffer from severe constipation. nine0013
Gluten-free buckwheat porridge - very nutritious and rich in iron, fiber, rich in various vitamins and microelements. This is also a good option for starting a child's acquaintance with adult food. These porridges can be prepared with water, breast milk, milk formula, which your child is used to. No need to add salt and sugar.
Rules for introducing porridge into baby food
If the child already eats porridge from 5 months, then at 6 months you can offer a more complex porridge - for example, rice porridge with apricot or raspberries, rice porridge with banana (this is very successful a combination both in taste and in its properties) or even more complex porridge - corn-rice with banana. nine0013
Over time, you can start adding apple, banana, pear, plum and prunes, apricot and dried apricots, broccoli, carrots, berries to porridge, , provided that the child is not allergic to them.
The rules for introducing cereals are the same as for vegetable puree. In order for the child to get used to the new product and its consistency more easily, first prepare 5% porridge (5 g of cereal per 100 g of water), if you make it yourself. Porridge is usually cooked with water, but can be made with breast milk, infant formula. First, give the baby one teaspoon, then, within 7-10 days, bring the volume of porridge of the same percentage to the full volume of feeding (150 g). If all this time the porridge is well tolerated, i.e. there are no skin rashes, the child has stable stools, they switch to a gradual (starting from 20-30 g) introduction of porridge of the same cereal, but already at a 10% concentration (10 g of cereal per 100 g of water). In other words, a thicker porridge is administered no earlier than 7-10 days from the beginning of the introduction of porridge. The complete introduction of 10% porridge to the baby is also carried out in 7-10 days. The third week falls on the complete addiction of the child to a new dish. Only after that you can introduce a new cereal (in the form of 10% porridge) or the next complementary foods. nine0013
Video: feeding porridge
You need to give porridge from a spoon, better in the morning for breakfast. After porridge at the stage of its introduction, the child should be offered breast or milk formula. With artificial feeding, the volume of the mixture after a portion of porridge should be such that, together with porridge, it is 200 ml with five meals a day.
Norms for the introduction of cereals
In the future, the volume of the portion of porridge gradually increases, amounting to:
- 7-8 months - 160-170 ml
- 8-9 months - 170-180 ml
- 9-12 months - up to 200 ml (there is a complete replacement of one feeding of the child with complementary foods. )
- Day 1 – 1 teaspoon (5 g)
- Day 2 - 2 teaspoons (10 g)
- Day 3 - 3 teaspoons (15 g)
- Day 4 - 4 teaspoons (20 g)
- Day 5 - 50 ml (50 g)
- Day 6 - 100 ml (100 g)
- Day 7 - 150 ml (150 g)
Meat complementary foods - the rules for introducing meat into the child's diet
Meat is usually the third, very important product of complementary foods, after vegetables and cereals. The meat contains amino acids, complete animal protein, B vitamins (B1, B2, B6 and B12), heme iron, potassium, calcium, zinc, phosphorus, which are necessary for the growth and development of the child. It is very important to understand that mashed meat contains iron, which is easily absorbed. And the addition of meat to vegetables improves the absorption of iron from them, from vegetables. nine0013
Iron deficiency can seriously affect the intellectual development of a child, his immunity, hematopoiesis. Since your task is to raise a healthy and intelligent child, meat complementary foods must be introduced without fail and in a timely manner.
Heme iron - found in meat products and easily digestible (red meat-veal, liver), absorption is about 25%.
Non-heme iron - found in plant foods (beans, beans, lentils, peas, nuts, tomatoes, cauliflower, green leafy vegetables, apples, dried fruits, but it is absorbed much worse from plants - only 3-5% Iron absorption from other animal products (eggs, fish) is 10-15%.0013
It is important to know that human milk enhances , while cow's milk reduces iron absorption .
Timing of the introduction of meat complementary foods
It is advisable to introduce meat puree to a child aged 6-8 months . This, to some extent, depends on when cereals and vegetable/fruit purees were introduced. if your baby has been eating vegetables and cereals since 4 months, meat can be introduced at 6 months. From 7 months it can be administered if the child is not gaining weight. From 8 months to children who started complementary foods at 6 months. nine0013
For children at risk for the development of anemia, an earlier introduction of meat at the age of 5 - 6 months is recommended.
It has been proven that only daily use of children's enriched porridge and meat puree can fully meet the needs of children in iron, zinc and other micronutrients.
You can start meat complementary foods with lean beef, veal , but better with less allergenic poultry meat ( turkey, chicken ), or rabbit, these are the most easily digestible meats.
Goose and pork are fatty for the baby, and the meat of duck and other birds of the reservoirs is also not suitable for the first feeding. They are recommended to give only after 3 years;
Horse Meat is perfect for your little one. The product is rich in carbohydrates and proteins, but it is almost impossible to find horse meat for sale.
Meat should be introduced into the child's diet gradually, at lunchtime, first a quarter of a teaspoon and, gradually adding, bring it up to the daily norm: At 8 months, about 50 g, at 9months-60-70 g.
Video: Power feeding meat
Scheme for the introduction of puree
- 1 day ¼ of the vegetables
- Day 2 - ½ teaspoon
- Day 3 - 1 teaspoon
- Day 4 - 2 teaspoons
- Day 5 - 3 teaspoons
- Day 6 3-4 teaspoons + vegetables
At first, it is better to give meat with vegetable puree, which the child has already eaten, so that he adapts better to the new product, and iron is better absorbed. Children at the end of the first year of life can already be given 3 varieties of mashed meat. nine0013
Baby menu at 7-8 months
At 7-8 months you can start giving children 0 baby cottage cheese 9000 Start with 1/2 teaspoon. Within a month, the daily volume of cottage cheese consumption by a baby can be increased to 30-40 g. In addition, a child of 8 months is recommended to give sour-milk infant formula. But ordinary yogurt from the store should not be given. At this age, the child should receive 5 g of butter and 5 g (1 teaspoon) of vegetable oil, ¼- yolk - 2-3 times a week. nine0013 Baby's menu at 9 months At the age of 9 months Your baby is already familiar at this age already usually familiar: , egg yolk
At this age, the child usually gets complementary foods 3 times a day . His diet depends on the age of the start of complementary foods. If the baby began to give new food at 4-5 months, the list of allowed foods will be much wider than if this happened at 6-7 months. Therefore, all this is very individual, there are no absolutely rigid frameworks and recommendations. On the Internet you will find a lot of different advice on baby food, if you are not sure about something, it is better to consult your pediatrician.
Baby's menu at 9 months
At the age of 9 months Your baby is already familiar at this age already usually familiar: , egg yolk. You may have already met meat . Therefore, at this age, they usually give already more complex purees and porridges, less homogenized, of various tastes , gradually preparing him for adult nutrition, increasing the variety and quantity of complementary foods. It is desirable to feed the baby at the table with other family members, he must see how his parents eat with pleasure, he learns from them. The amount of food offered should be based on the principles of actively encouraging the baby to eat, it is necessary to continue to gradually change the consistency and increase the variety of complementary foods, adhering to the recommended frequency of introducing complementary foods.
From vegetables the baby can be given what he ate before, mixing them: pumpkin, zucchini, cauliflower, broccoli, carrots and others, adding 1 tsp. vegetable oil . If the baby does not have skin reactions, then you can give beets . It is also possible to give two-, three-component vegetable purees and soups , but only on condition that he is already familiar with these products and he has not had a reaction to them. nine0621 If you have introduced complementary foods, then you need to remember that water is an important part of baby food. You can use purified water or special water for children .
In addition, at 9 months you can give special baby wheat cookies , which the baby will be happy to eat on his own as an adult, white wheat bread, this improves hand motility, improves eating skills, but at the same time he must be supervised. nine0621 At this age, you can start giving fish puree from low-fat varieties: river perch, pollock, hake, haddock, zander, pollack - start with ½ teaspoon, bringing up to 40-50 g , watching the reaction of the child , give at lunchtime instead of mashed meat, 1-2 times a week. But a number of pediatricians do not advise giving it up to a year, it is a useful, but highly allergenic product.
Baby menu at 10 months
B 10 months usually 2 times a day the child receives the mother's breast or special milk formulas . Various cereals: buckwheat, rice, corn, oatmeal, wheat, semolina porridge . add 5-10 g of butter to cereals. At this age, it is already possible to make complex cereals from 2-3 cereals with which the child is familiar, add various fruits, vegetables: apple, banana, pear, plum and prunes, apricot and dried apricots, broccoli, carrots, berries nine0005 , provided that the child is not allergic to them, or use ready-made cereals with fruit.
From vegetables the baby can be given what he ate earlier, mixing them: pumpkin, zucchini, cauliflower, broccoli, carrots, beets and others, adding 1 tsp. vegetable oil . It is also already possible to give two-, three-component vegetable purees and soups, but only on condition that he is already familiar with these products and he did not have a reaction to them. nine0621 At this age, the baby already usually eats about 40-50 g of baby meat puree from chicken, turkey, rabbit , with good tolerance to cow's milk proteins from veal or beef. If he has been eating meat for a month or more, you can start giving him two-component meat purees , for example from chicken and turkey.
At this age, fish puree from low-fat varieties is usually started: river perch, pollock, hake, haddock, pike perch, pollock with ½ teaspoon, bringing up to 40-50 g, following the reaction of the child, it is better to give at lunchtime instead of mashed meat, 1-2 times a week .
At 10 months, children's cottage cheese should be given 2 times a week. Start with 1/2 teaspoon if you have not given it before, the daily amount of cottage cheese at this age is 40-50 g .
It is recommended to give special sour-milk baby formulas. nine0621 At this age, a child can receive 5-10 g of butter and 5 g (1 teaspoon) of vegetable oil, and 2-3 times a week½ - yolk .
Child's menu at 1 year old
The child is one year old. He has already grown up, he already has 6-10 teeth, with which he gnaws everything he sees, he is interested in chewing food, his digestive enzymes already work well and he has already become acquainted with various products: vegetable and fruit purees, various cereal cereals, meat and fish, sour-milk mixtures. In fact, he is already prepared for the transition to a more adult diet. In a year, changing the diet involves turning to new products and gradually changing the way they are prepared and the degree of grinding. nine0621 You need to eat 5 times a day with an interval 3.5-4 hours .
semi-liquid dishes should still remain the basis of nutrition, but not only mashed dishes, but also containing small pieces of food . Too dry food should not be given to the baby yet, as he may have difficulty swallowing.
In the year the child already tries to eat with his hands and he should be encouraged to do so. Finely chopped, soft foods can be given eg: small pieces of soft fruit, vegetables, cheese, well-cooked meat, pasta , etc. and foods that dissolve quickly, children's biscuits, children's crispbread - as food with the help of hands.
It is necessary to avoid products that can enter the respiratory tract and cause asphyxia - sausages and other hard meat products , nuts (especially peanuts), grapes, raisins, raw carrots, popcorn, round candies . Hold off on this for now.
In a year, part of the children are without mother's milk. But if your baby is still not weaned - do not rush, if possible, give him a breast before bed at night. You can also breastfeed between main meals. At this age, the child receives all the main vitamins and minerals from food, but he can get a number of biologically active components from breast milk. nine0013
Dairy products still occupy an important place in the child's diet, it is a source of calcium, B vitamins, protein, milk sugar and fat. It is better to use special baby milk (marked with a triple on the packaging), baby fermented milk products: kefir, yogurt in total 500-600 ml per day .
The child should be given cottage cheese. The daily dose of cottage cheese after 1 year can be increased up to 70 g per day . It can be given pureed or combined with fruit puree, pudding, casserole. This contributes to the development of chewing skills.
Butter can be added to cereals or smeared on wheat bread, cookies in a dose of up to 12 g per day.
Low fat sour cream and cream
After 1 year, you can give low-fat sour cream and cream in small quantities.
Every year a child must be given various vegetables , it is good to combine them with protein products, meat . The vegetable diet can now be diversified with green peas, tomatoes, turnips, beets, carrots, spinach in the form of mashed potatoes. Legumes are still better not to give.
Fruits and berries
After 1 year, you can gradually introduce the baby to new fruits and berries: strawberries, cherries, cherries, kiwi, currants, gooseberries, chokeberries, sea buckthorn, raspberries, blackberries, cranberries, blueberries, lingonberries and even citrus fruits . But do it gradually, watching the reaction of the child. Berries with a dense peel (gooseberries) are best mashed, while soft juicy fruits (peaches, strawberries, apricots, kiwi) can be offered to the baby in pieces. nine0621 Daily dose of fruits - approx.
Meat products can be given in the form of steam cutlets, meatballs, meatballs, meat soufflé and pudding in an amount up to 100 g daily - beef, veal, lean pork, rabbit, turkey, chicken.
Fish can be given once or twice a week for 30-40 g per meal as a substitute for meat dishes
Chicken, quail eggs give boiled or in the form of omelets in milk, you can try with vegetables.
Porridge can be cooked from rice, oatmeal, buckwheat, corn, millet, semolina. At this age, they should still have a uniform consistency, so it will be easier for him to swallow. You can use ready-made industrial, children's instant cereals, for example, various multi-cereal cereals, in which fruits, crackers, cereals have already been added. Give 1 time per day. nine0013
Be sure to give the child clean water to drink, better bottled water for children, as much as he wants . In addition to her baby can drink vegetable and fruit juices, dairy products, compotes, weak tea.
No need to give:
no need to give confectionery and sweets to a child 0005 . From sweets at this age, you can sometimes give marmalade, dried fruits and cookies.
Do not give sausages and sausages , they are rarely prepared from high quality meats and are rich in various food additives
Calorie content and volume
0003 1200 ml .
Table for complementary foods by month: Download
All videos: Putting a child for a child from 4 to 12 months
9000 Let your children be healthy and successful!
Other news in category
Newborn - online course "Mom's Way: Newborn" from Professor Nyankovsky on caring for a baby in the first months of life
Baby's first litter. Porridge or vegetable puree?
Complementary foods - what is it and how is it eaten?
Loginevskaya Yana Vladimirovna Pediatrician
What is weaning and when should we start it? These and many other issues related to child nutrition torment young parents. In the era of the Internet and easy access to information, this information can sometimes become too much. nine0013
Let's find out what complementary foods are
Complementary foods is the introduction into the diet of a healthy child at a certain age of any food products, home or industrially prepared, that supplement breast milk or food that imitates it, and contribute to the gradual transfer of the child to the general table. As a rule, complementary foods are thicker in consistency than the child's previous food. If the child has any health problems, the introduction of complementary foods may have its own characteristics. nine0013
The purpose of complementary foods in the first year of life is to introduce the baby to foods other than breast milk/or formula. Timely teach to swallow and chew solid food. And also to avoid deficiency of energy and micronutrients, and vitamins.
In the literature and other sources, you can find such names as "pediatric" and "pedagogical" complementary foods?
Pediatric Complementary Food , as its name implies, is a classic complementary feeding regimen recommended by the pediatrician at the appointment. Schemes in which there is a gradual replacement of breast milk / formula feeding with cereals, fruit / vegetable purees and other types of products. nine0013
Pedagogical complementary food - "Pedagogical" means that first of all the child is taught - they are taught to eat, the correct behavior at the table, they teach that food is joy and pleasure, they show new tastes. The essence of pedagogical complementary foods is that the child’s nutrition begins with “microdoses” (grains of food) that the child receives from his mother’s plate, nothing is puréed or blended, or even warmed up. Nutrition of the child - together with the family, how much he will eat, he will eat so much. Nothing is specially prepared, the family is invited to switch to a healthy diet. The disadvantage of this type of complementary foods is that the child, starting with “micro doses”, does not adequately increase the volume of complementary foods, which can lead to malnutrition of the child at an older age. nine0013
In my article, I will rely on modern research and recommendations primarily from the WHO (World Health Organization) and the National Program for Optimizing Feeding in Children in the First Year of Life in the Russian Federation.
What are the requirements for complementary foods:
- Complementary foods must be timely, introduced at the moment when the child's energy and nutrient requirements exceed what can be provided through breastfeeding (or formula). nine0034
- Complementary foods should be adequate, that is, with enough energy, protein and micronutrients to meet the nutritional needs of a growing child.
- Safe - Store or prepare hygienically and feed with clean hands using clean utensils - spoons, plates, not bottles or teats.
- Properly Administered - The child is fed appropriately for hunger cues, and feeding frequency and feeding methods should be appropriate for the child's age. nine0034
When do we introduce complementary foods
The optimal age for the introduction of complementary foods is 6 months.
If the child is premature, then the timing of the introduction of complementary foods is delayed by as much as this child was born earlier (that is, if the child was born not at 40 weeks, but, for example, at 36, we have the right to postpone the introduction of complementary foods for 4 weeks, but if we see that at 6 months the child is already quite ready for the introduction of complementary foods, then you can start as early as 6 months). It is advisable to postpone the introduction of complementary foods for no more than 2 months. Try to start the introduction of complementary foods no later than 8 months of the child. nine0013
Up to 6 months, breastfeeding fully covers the energy needs of the child. Around 6 months of age, a baby's energy requirements increase dramatically, so it is necessary to add something to his diet in addition to liquid food. Breast milk in terms of its energy value contains 67-68 kcal / 100g, the mixture has approximately the same numbers. Breast milk remains a valuable energy product for children not only in the first year of life, but also after a year. At the same time, it should be taken into account that the volume of the child's stomach by 6 months is about 200 ml, so the food introduced to the child must be thicker than formula or breast milk, otherwise we will still not be able to meet the energy needs of the body. The optimal calorie content of complementary foods should be at least 100 kcal / 100 g. nine0013
Liquid food and liquid quickly fill the stomach. To fill the energy deficit, it is necessary to introduce foods with a higher energy value than breast milk or formula.
WHO ways to increase calories:
cook with less liquid
Replace part of the water for cooking with breast milk or a mixture (it must be borne in mind that breast milk contains enzymes (lipase) - which begin the digestion and breakdown of food even before it enters the child's body, so instant cereals, when breast milk is added, immediately become liquid, but their energy value is not lost. nine0013
What do we focus on when introducing complementary foods:
The main criterion is the readiness of the child to introduce complementary foods - the child shows interest in food, the so-called food interest - he is interested in what his mother eats, actively reaches for food from his parents' plate, wants to taste it.
- Child's age about 6 months
- Decreased ejection reflex of solid food (active interest in food never appears until ejection reflex fades)
- Doubling birth weight (optional item, some babies double their weight before 6 months of age)
- Child can sit with support
- The first teeth appear in a child (again, not always)
Principles of maintaining interest in food
- Parents should remember that in order to form the main criterion for readiness for complementary foods, the child must see how his family eats. The formation of eating habits comes from the family and the immediate environment of the child. If, before 6 months, the child has never seen how mom or dad eats, how they eat at the table and what they eat, he may not have a food interest by 6 months. Food interest begins to gradually form as a skill of tracking the actions of an adult from 3 months of age. That is, somewhere from the age of 3 months the child, if you take him with you to the kitchen (dining room), the child begins to observe the process of eating, and gradually this interest - from the interest of "observation" goes to the "desire" to try just like mom or dad. nine0034
- It is advisable not to feed the baby separately and try to eat with the baby what the baby eats. If you are feeding your child with industrial food (ready-made mashed potatoes in a jar), then try this food with your child. Try to bring the canned food as close as possible to the general view on the table - transfer the puree from the can to a plate, give a spoon. At the age of 8-10 months, the child learns to eat with his hands, so at this age it is advisable that the child has small pieces of food on the plate that he already eats - these can be pieces of boiled potatoes, broccoli, cauliflower, pieces of apple, banana. The pieces should be small, 1 x 1 cm, so that the child can grab them with his fingers. In parallel, the mother can supplement the child from the plate with the main food. The child learns to cope with more solid food, learns to chew, swallow. The sooner the skill of swallowing more solid food is worked out, the easier it is for parents in the future. At the age of 10-12 months, the child's fine motor skills are already improving, he is learning to eat with a spoon (be patient, different children do it in different ways and at different speeds)
- Be mindful of the child's physical condition - do not introduce new foods when the child is unwell or tired or teething or has undergone some medical procedure such as a vaccination
- Offer small portions. Some children undereat food because they are initially intimidated by the portion size. Do not insist that the child finishes the portion. Let it be better after some time to ask for another
- Try to keep the area around the child clean! This initially teaches the child to cleanliness at the table and to a neat diet. Some children are very sensitive to external stimuli - dirty hands, face, clothes can cause them severe discomfort
- Help the child if you see that the child is "interested" in food, but tired of fighting with it.
- No games, entertainment or persuasion while eating - in this way you replace food interest with interest in the game. The child will not be able to learn to adequately assess their desires in food. Don't turn food into a show.
Complementary feeding rules:
any new product is introduced only to a healthy child. A breastfed baby is given complementary foods up to the breast. nine0013
the introduction of new foods should not coincide with vaccinations, teething, vacations, or other stress for the child (when stressed, the child may refuse the proposed new product).
any new product is introduced in the morning (so parents have time to observe the child, look at his reaction, notice allergic manifestations) If the child has a reaction to a new product, then it is better to write it down, and try to introduce the product again after 5- 10 days. Because this reaction may not be related to the product, but caused by other factors. If the negative reaction is repeated, then the introduction of this product is postponed for 3 months. nine0013
it is advisable to introduce no more than one new product per day.
to get acquainted with the product, the child sometimes needs 10-15 sentences in order for him to start eating it. The reaction of the child in the form of wrinkling, pushing food, curvature of the face does not indicate that the child did not like the food, but only that the new taste is very bright for him and causes a large number of emotions. For children, even neutral tastes can seem very rich, due to the higher sensitivity of the receptors. Therefore, when introductory feeding, it is not recommended to use spices and salt in the preparation of food for the child. nine0013
Basic complementary foods
For the first feeding, there are three main types of products: cereals, vegetables and meat.
Cereals - Dairy-free porridges are used to start complementary foods. Rice, corn, buckwheat are the first to be introduced - these can be special “instant” baby cereals (we carefully study the composition, make sure that there are no additives, sweeteners, flavor enhancers, vitamins), instant cereals are well suited to start complementary foods, at 6-7 months, in the future you can switch to ordinary "adult" cereals, you can grind ready-made buckwheat or rice with a blender or fork; instant porridges in the form of flakes are also good. Then the rest of the cereals (oatmeal, rye, millet) are introduced. With an allergic burden in the family, the introduction of milk porridges earlier than 12 months is not recommended. nine0013
Vegetables – first we introduce green/white vegetables (zucchini, cucumber, broccoli, kohlrabi, cabbage and cauliflower), then legumes, colored vegetables (carrots, pumpkin, beets, tomato)
Meat - the beginning of complementary foods with the most easily digestible and hypoallergenic meats - rabbit, turkey, then veal, beef, pork, lamb. Children with an allergy to cow's milk protein start complementary foods first with pork, then they introduce beef. Children with allergies are also trying to limit the introduction of chicken into the diet, as it is a highly allergenic product. Lamb is introduced to children no earlier than 10 months. Poultry meat - duck, goose - contains refractory fats and is not recommended for introduction into the diet of babies under 3 years of age. nine0013
Fruit and dairy products are not considered essential complementary foods. Can be given for table variety. If the mother wants to give fruits, berries and juices to the child, it is better to use them as a flavoring additive to the main complementary foods or even postpone the introduction to an older age. In children with an allergic tendency, it is recommended not to introduce dairy products up to a year. You have to be careful with berries and fruits. It is best to start complementary foods with seasonal fruits and berries; the least and least likely to cause allergies are currants, blueberries, apples, pears, plums. Allergic reactions often occur on strawberries, bananas, citrus fruits. nine0013
Fish and seafood. Not a staple complementary food. But fish, like meat, is a source of protein, rich in polyunsaturated fatty acids, as well as minerals and vitamins. It is recommended to introduce fish no earlier than 9-10 months. Again, if the child is allergic, it is advisable to refrain from introducing fish products up to 1 year. We begin to introduce complementary foods with low-fat white varieties of fish in the form of mashed potatoes - ice fish, hake, cod, haddock, pollock, navaga, pike perch, sea bass, dorado. nine0013
Egg . A product that is rich in many different micro and macro elements, vitamins. However, the egg has a very high allergenicity (included in the very big eight allergens). Considering that a quarter (5-6 g) or half (10-12 g) of the yolk, which are recommended to be administered, contains very few nutrients and energy, it is easier not to give this product than to risk allergic reactions in a child.nine0034
Whole nuts, peanuts should not be present in a child's diet until at least three years of age. In a number of countries, communities, families, where, for example, peanuts are common as a staple food, they can be used as an additive to complementary foods in a pureed state. Nuts are included in the big eight allergens and are not recommended for introduction into complementary foods for children with allergies up to three years of age. nine0033
Tea . The World Health Organization does not recommend including tea in the diet of children under 2 years of age. Why? First of all, because of the tannins that are present in tea and can help reduce the absorption of trace elements, including iron and cause anemia. Tea also contains caffeine (it is found in a state associated with tannins and is more often called theine), which can cause excessive stimulating effect on the fragile nervous system of the child., It can also lead to increased heart rate, increased peristalsis of the stomach, increased body temperature - all this can adversely affect the general condition of the child. nine0013
- Salt, sugar are not recommended for introduction into complementary foods under 1 year of age. Spices are introduced into the diet of a child after 2 years of age. These recommendations are based on the high sensitivity of the receptors in young children and the taste of tasteless dishes for children, even for us, is much brighter and richer.
Water . After the introduction of complementary foods, children can begin to offer water as a drink. First as an introduction, later as an additional source of fluid, while reducing the volume of breast milk (mixture). It should be pure water without any additives. It is important to remember that breastfed babies may go without water for quite a long time, due to the fact that they receive enough liquid from breast milk. nine0013
WHAT to feed - the choice of parents. But it must be remembered that no single product (except for breast milk for children in the first months of life) can provide the body with all the nutrients, therefore, when compiling complementary foods, a variety of products should be combined.