How to start baby on pureed food
When, What, and How to Introduce Solid Foods | Nutrition
For more information about how to know if your baby is ready to starting eating foods, what first foods to offer, and what to expect, watch these videos from 1,000 Days.
The Dietary Guidelines for Americans and the American Academy of Pediatrics recommend children be introduced to foods other than breast milk or infant formula when they are about 6 months old. Introducing foods before 4 months old is not recommended. Every child is different. How do you know if your child is ready for foods other than breast milk or infant formula? You can look for these signs that your child is developmentally ready.
- Sits up alone or with support.
- Is able to control head and neck.
- Opens the mouth when food is offered.
- Swallows food rather than pushes it back out onto the chin.
- Brings objects to the mouth.
- Tries to grasp small objects, such as toys or food.
- Transfers food from the front to the back of the tongue to swallow.
What Foods Should I Introduce to My Child First?
The American Academy of Pediatrics says that for most children, you do not need to give foods in a certain order. Your child can begin eating solid foods at about 6 months old. By the time he or she is 7 or 8 months old, your child can eat a variety of foods from different food groups. These foods include infant cereals, meat or other proteins, fruits, vegetables, grains, yogurts and cheeses, and more.
If your child is eating infant cereals, it is important to offer a variety of fortifiedalert icon infant cereals such as oat, barley, and multi-grain instead of only rice cereal. Only providing infant rice cereal is not recommended by the Food and Drug Administration because there is a risk for children to be exposed to arsenic. Visit the U.S. Food & Drug Administrationexternal icon to learn more.
How Should I Introduce My Child to Foods?
Your child needs certain vitamins and minerals to grow healthy and strong.
Now that your child is starting to eat food, be sure to choose foods that give your child all the vitamins and minerals they need.
Click here to learn more about some of these vitamins & minerals.
Let your child try one single-ingredient food at a time at first. This helps you see if your child has any problems with that food, such as food allergies. Wait 3 to 5 days between each new food. Before you know it, your child will be on his or her way to eating and enjoying lots of new foods.
Introduce potentially allergenic foods when other foods are introduced.
Potentially allergenic foods include cow’s milk products, eggs, fish, shellfish, tree nuts, peanuts, wheat, soy, and sesame. Drinking cow’s milk or fortified soy beverages is not recommended until your child is older than 12 months, but other cow’s milk products, such as yogurt, can be introduced before 12 months. If your child has severe eczema and/or egg allergy, talk with your child’s doctor or nurse about when and how to safely introduce foods with peanuts.
How Should I Prepare Food for My Child to Eat?
At first, it’s easier for your child to eat foods that are mashed, pureed, or strained and very smooth in texture. It can take time for your child to adjust to new food textures. Your child might cough, gag, or spit up. As your baby’s oral skills develop, thicker and lumpier foods can be introduced.
Some foods are potential choking hazards, so it is important to feed your child foods that are the right texture for his or her development. To help prevent choking, prepare foods that can be easily dissolved with saliva and do not require chewing. Feed small portions and encourage your baby to eat slowly. Always watch your child while he or she is eating.
Here are some tips for preparing foods:
- Mix cereals and mashed cooked grains with breast milk, formula, or water to make it smooth and easy for your baby to swallow.
- Mash or puree vegetables, fruits and other foods until they are smooth.
- Hard fruits and vegetables, like apples and carrots, usually need to be cooked so they can be easily mashed or pureed.
- Cook food until it is soft enough to easily mash with a fork.
- Remove all fat, skin, and bones from poultry, meat, and fish, before cooking.
- Remove seeds and hard pits from fruit, and then cut the fruit into small pieces.
- Cut soft food into small pieces or thin slices.
- Cut cylindrical foods like hot dogs, sausage and string cheese into short thin strips instead of round pieces that could get stuck in the airway.
- Cut small spherical foods like grapes, cherries, berries and tomatoes into small pieces.
- Cook and finely grind or mash whole-grain kernels of wheat, barley, rice, and other grains.
Learn more about potential choking hazards and how to prevent your child from choking.
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Feeding Your 4- to 7-Month-Old (for Parents)
Most babies this age are ready to try solid foods. Experts recommend starting solid foods when a baby is about 6 months old, depending on the baby's readiness and nutritional needs.
Be sure to check with your doctor before giving any solid foods.
Is My Baby Ready to Eat Solid Foods?
How can you tell if your baby is ready for solids? Here are a few hints:
- Does your baby swallow food or push it out of their mouth? Babies have a natural tongue-thrust reflex that pushes food back out. Wait until this reflex disappears (typically when babies are 4–6 months old).
- Can your baby support their own head? To eat solid food, an infant needs good head and neck control and should be able to sit up.
- Is your baby interested in food? Babies who stare, reach and grab, and open their mouths for food are ready to try solid foods.
If your doctor gives the go-ahead but your baby seems frustrated or uninterested in solid foods, try waiting a few days before trying again. Breast milk and formula will still meet nutritional needs as your baby learns to eat solid foods. But after 6 months, babies need the added nutrition — like iron and zinc — that solid foods provide.
Do not add cereal or other food to your baby's bottle because it can lead to too much weight gain.
Watch for signs that your child is hungry or full. Respond to these cues and let your child stop when full. A child who is full may suck with less enthusiasm, stop, or turn away from the breast or the bottle. With solid foods, they may turn away, refuse to open their mouth, or spit the food out.
How Should I Start Feeding My Baby Solid Foods?
When your baby is ready and the doctor says it’s OK to try solid foods, pick a time of day when your baby is not tired or cranky. You want your baby to be a little hungry, but not so hungry that they’re upset. So you might want to give your baby a little breast milk or formula first.
Have your baby sit supported in your lap or in a high chair with a safety strap.
Most babies' first food is iron-fortified infant single-grain cereal mixed with breast milk or formula. Place the spoon near your baby's lips, and let the baby smell and taste it. Don't be surprised if this first spoonful is rejected. Wait a minute and try again. Most food offered to your baby at this age will end up on the baby's chin, bib, or high-chair tray. Again, this is just an introduction.
When your little one gets the hang of eating cereal off a spoon, it may be time to try single-ingredient puréed meat, vegetables, or fruit. The order in which you give them doesn't matter, but go slow. Offer foods that are high in iron and zinc — such as meat, poultry, eggs, and beans — especially if your baby is breastfeeding. Try one food at a time and wait several days before trying something else new. This will let you identify any foods that your baby may be allergic to.
Which Foods Should I Avoid?
Foods that are more likely to cause allergies can be among the foods you introduce to your baby. These include peanuts, eggs, cow’s milk, seafood, nuts, wheat, and soy. Waiting to start these foods does not prevent food allergies. Talk to your doctor if you’re concerned about food allergies, especially if any close family members have allergies, food allergies, or allergy-related conditions, like eczema or asthma.
Infants with severe eczema or egg allergies are more likely to have allergies to peanuts. Talk to your doctor about how and when to introduce these foods to your child.
Possible signs of food allergy or allergic reactions include:
- bloating or an increase in gassiness
Get medical care right away if your baby has a more severe allergic reaction, like hives, drooling, wheezing, or trouble breathing.
If your child has any type of reaction to a food, don't offer that food again until you talk with your doctor.
Babies shouldn't have:
- foods with added sugars and no-calorie sweeteners
- high-sodium foods
- honey, until after the first birthday. It can cause botulism in babies.
- unpasteurized juice, milk, yogurt, or cheese
- regular cow's milk or soy beverages before 12 months instead of breast milk or formula. It’s OK to offer pasteurized yogurt and cheese.
- foods that may cause choking, such as hot dogs, raw carrots, grapes, popcorn, and nuts
Tips for Feeding Your Baby Solid Foods
With the hectic pace of family life, most parents try commercially prepared baby foods at first. They come in small, convenient containers, and manufacturers must meet strict safety and nutrition guidelines.
If you prepare your own baby foods at home, here are some things to keep in mind:
- Follow the rules for food safety, including washing your hands well and often.
- To preserve the nutrients in your baby's food, cook it in ways that keep the most vitamins and minerals. Try steaming or baking fruits and vegetables instead of boiling, which washes away the nutrients.
- Freeze portions that you aren't going to use right away.
- Whether you buy the baby food or make it yourself, texture and consistency are important. At first, babies should have finely puréed single-ingredient foods. (Just applesauce, for example, not apples and pears mixed together.)
- After your baby is eating individual foods, it's OK to offer a puréed mix of two foods. As babies get older, they will learn to eat a greater variety of tastes and textures.
- If you use prepared baby food in jars, spoon some of the food into a bowl to feed your baby. Do not feed your baby right from the jar — bacteria from the baby's mouth can contaminate the remaining food. If you refrigerate opened jars of baby food, it's best to throw away anything not eaten within a day or two.
- Around 6 months of age is a good time for your baby to try a cup. You might need to try a few cups to find one that works for your child. Use water at first to avoid messy clean-ups. Do not give juice to infants younger than 12 months.
Over the next few months, introduce a variety of foods from all the food groups. If your baby doesn't seem to like something, don’t give up. It can take 8 to 10 tries or more before babies learn to like new foods.
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close communication. You are now preparing for another exciting milestone - introducing solid foods to your baby's diet. This is an exciting moment when your baby becomes more independent in eating. But, like all other stages of a child's development, this period requires a long adaptation. Like most parents, you probably want to know when to start introducing solid foods and how to introduce solid foods to your baby.
This article contains important information about introducing solid foods to your baby's diet (age-appropriate), tips for introducing complementary foods, and techniques to help you and your baby transition smoothly to the next level of nutrition.
At what age should complementary foods be introduced?
Be sure to check with your doctor when you think your child is ready to introduce new foods. There is no exact age at which complementary foods should be introduced. However, the introduction of complementary foods to children, both breastfed and bottle-fed, is recommended to start at the age of 4-6 months. At 6 months of age, a baby's energy and mineral needs increase. However, all babies are different and some may be ready for it as early as four months. Four months is the earliest age at which complementary foods can be introduced. Until then, the baby's gastrointestinal tract is not ready to absorb any other food besides breast milk or formula. Only a doctor will be able to assess the individual readiness of each child; no matter what his decision is, it is important to continue breastfeeding, gradually introducing solid foods along with it.
The doctor will try to identify key signs that your baby is ready for solid foods: 
- The baby can sit up without assistance or can sit on mom's lap and hold her head.
- The “spoon push” reflex, a natural reaction of rejection of food, in which the child pushes the spoon out with the tongue (the child no longer sticks out the tongue when eating), has disappeared in the baby.
- The child has an active food interest (desire to try something from the table while adults are eating).
After your baby has mastered the skills necessary for independent feeding, including holding his head well, you can begin to introduce more solid foods into the diet.
Your baby's first foods
The moment you've been waiting for is finally here: your baby is ready to try solid food! Usually the products of the first complementary foods are vegetables and cereals.
If the baby is healthy, has no digestive problems and is gaining weight well, then, as a rule, weaning foods start with the introduction of vegetables.
Monocomponent vegetable purees are good for the first feeding. Vegetables are a source of organic acids, potassium, iron, fiber. It is recommended to start vegetable complementary foods with zucchini, broccoli and cauliflower. Initially, vegetable puree should consist of one type of vegetable. Then you can make a combination of different vegetables. Start with 1 spoon, then bring the volume to 180 grams. By the year, the amount of vegetable purees consumed per day is 200 grams.
If the child is underweight or anemic, industrial cereals can be given as the first complementary food. As the first cereals, in order to avoid allergic reactions, it is recommended to introduce dairy-free gluten-free cereals. Mix one to two tablespoons of single-grain cereal with breast milk, or infant formula, or water. If the child is breastfed, give him complementary foods only after the main feeding, so that the child can first get enough breast milk; keep doing this until he is about
Once your child is used to their first meal, continue to introduce new foods such as fruit purees, cottage cheese, eggs, dairy products, and meat and fish purees. Before introducing each next product, you must wait three to five days to find out if the child is allergic to the previous one.
The inclusion of various foods in the diet is very important for the formation of taste habits in the baby. Steam a variety of healthy meals!
Steaming is one of the healthiest ways to cook baby food. Steamed products are very soft and juicy, unlike fried products, which, of course, is very popular with children. And most importantly, steamed foods preserve the most important vitamins and minerals.
Make healthy cooking easy and enjoyable with the Philips Avent 4 in 1 Steamer Blender. The 4 in 1 healthy baby food maker allows you to steam and grind food in one jug. In addition, with the Philips Avent Steamer Blender, parents can make solid foods for babies of all ages, from purees to chunks. Jug with a volume of 1l. designed to cook several servings at a time. So you can prepare several meals at once to feed your baby now, and also freeze the puree for next time in a special container that comes with the steamer. The defrost and keep warm functions will help you prepare lunch or dinner for your baby even faster.
The 4 in 1 Steamer Blender also comes with a recipe booklet developed with pediatric nutritionist Emma Williams. In the brochure you will find interesting recipes for preparing tasty and fresh children's meals, as well as useful tips on the introduction of complementary foods and interesting menu ideas. Instill healthy habits in your baby from an early age for healthy development.
In addition to the joy your child will experience from a change in diet, it is important to be aware of the various food allergies that can occur during the introduction of complementary foods. Experts recommend starting to introduce commonly known food allergens when the baby is 4-6 months old. In addition, recent studies have shown that with a later introduction of complementary foods in children, the risk of developing food allergies increases, therefore, it is necessary to introduce such foods into the baby’s diet on time and not put them off for later. The most well-known G8 food allergens include:  
- cow's milk;
- chicken eggs;
If you or a family member has a food allergy, be sure to consult your pediatrician for the best solution for introducing the foods listed above to your child's diet.
In addition to introducing new foods into the child's diet, it is also necessary to teach him to drink water from the age of 6 months. During the first six months of a child's life, mother's milk provides him with the necessary amount of fluid, even in hot climates. But once your baby is 6 months old, you can start giving him little by little to drink from a non-spill cup.
Check out Avent's Soft Non-Spill Training Cup from the Natural series with comfortable handles to help your child learn to drink without help. It is easy to drink from it, because the liquid begins to flow out only when the child bites or sucks on the spout of the cup. The design of the cup makes it easy to hold with little hands.
From Puree to Finely Chopped Foods
Once your child has mastered the motor skills needed to eat more solid foods, you can move on to finely chopped foods. Each child is different, but usually chopped vegetables and meat can be introduced into the diet from nine months. 
When you introduce crushed foods into your child's diet, try to get your child to take an active part in family meals. The baby can be offered boiled vegetables, pieces of soft fruit, well-boiled pasta, or small pieces of chicken.
Remember to check that the ground food is soft and well cooked so that the child can easily grind it into mush with his mouth. Meat, for example, has a tougher structure and fibers, and therefore requires more thorough grinding compared to fruits that are delicate in texture.
With the Philips Avent 4 in 1 Steamer Blender, you can customize your food consistency from puree to chunks. Also, the recipe book that comes with the double boiler will allow you to easily choose the right recipe for the age of the child.
Tips for getting started with solid foods
Here are some basic tips for introducing complementary foods to infants. As you introduce solid foods into your child's diet, we also recommend following other tips to help your child get used to the new food: 
- Offer food only when the child wants it. In a quiet environment or when other family members are having lunch, offer your baby a new product if he wants to try it.
- Introduce a new product in small portions in the morning. A new product should be administered in the morning to monitor possible reactions to the product. Remember that the introduction of new foods into the diet should not be considered a complete meal for the child. It is only about giving the child the opportunity to taste different foods, as well as to get a feel for their structure, gradually increasing their portions as the baby grows older.
- Offer your child a new product only when they are healthy. Do not introduce new foods when the child is sick or during the vaccination period.
- If the child does not like the product, postpone the tasting until a later date. This is a new experience for your baby, associated with new tastes and sensations. Therefore, do not be discouraged and do not worry if the child did not like the food the first time! Simply postpone taking this product until a later time.
- Never leave your child alone with food. Although the child is already taking the first steps in independent nutrition, this does not mean that he can be completely independent.
- Do not give your child foods that are too hard or slippery, rounded or choking. These precautions will prevent the child from suffocation. Any rounded foods, such as grapes or carrots, should be cut into two or four pieces.
Goodbye liquid diet!
Proper weaning is an unforgettable experience for you and your baby. Complementary foods are very different from breastfeeding and bottle feeding, and you will certainly feel a sense of pride as your baby matures. Enjoy these precious moments. After all, before you know it, your child will grow out of his highchair and move on to a full three-course meal!
Download the app and use trackers to track your child's development and growth, and keep those special moments forever.
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How to teach a child to eat vegetables / Tips and life hacks - an article from the "How to feed" section on Food.ru
measures. We will try to do without them and tell you which vegetables are better to start complementary foods with and what to do if the child does not like vegetables at all.
How to start vegetable complementary foods
According to WHO recommendations, when breastfeeding, vegetable complementary foods are introduced at the age of six months, and if the child is bottle-fed or mixed-fed, from four. Experts recommend choosing white and green vegetables as they are hypoallergenic.
For a six-month-old child to get acquainted with vegetables:
According to research, it is worth offering one product to a child at least 10-15 times before concluding that he really does not like him.
Vegetable puree is introduced according to the rules:
One vegetable at a time;
Two to three days to track response;
The first serving of puree should be no more than half a teaspoon.
Following these vegetables, you can offer:
To teach a child to eat vegetables, in the first year of life, you can use life hacks:
Try to eat as many different types of vegetables as possible during pregnancy. The baby begins to get acquainted with tastes in the womb.
Start complementary foods with vegetables. If fruits are the first on the child's table, you run the risk of not introducing the child to vegetables. Zucchini definitely loses to an apple or a pear.
Starting at eight months, mix flavors. You can use ready-made fruit and vegetable purees or mix it yourself. Remember that you cannot introduce a new product in this way - you will not be able to track an allergic reaction.
Add vegetables to cereals. Pumpkin and carrots are more popular.
Do not offer chopped vegetables until your child has learned to chew solid foods. Until this moment, it is worth using a nibbler - a special device with a container for a vegetable, fruit or meat, which allows you to train chewing skills without the risk of choking.
What to do if a child doesn't eat vegetables at all
It also happens that a child's first acquaintance with vegetables was unsuccessful. But do not despair, there are several more ways to still introduce vegetables and herbs into the child's diet.
Offer vegetables in different forms. So, a child may refuse boiled carrots, but eat raw carrots with pleasure.
Cut vegetables and leave in clear glasses on the table;
Prepare fresh vegetable salads;
Learn carving. Vegetables cut in the form of roses, spirals and petals will be in the mouth, if only out of curiosity.
Potatoes, fresh cucumbers, carrots and squash are usually the child's favorite vegetables. So, you can cook dishes from these ingredients, adding others.
Potato-based vegetable stews and mashed soups can mask white cabbage, zucchini, eggplant, peppers, onions, white onions, squash, turnips and other vegetables.
Hearty pies can hide an infinite number of vegetables.
Other things you can do to make kids love vegetables
Cook vegetables in serving pots;
Make fruit and vegetable smoothies;
Grow vegetables on the windowsill or in the garden. Trying what you have grown with your own hands is insanely interesting.
Add vegetables to cutlets, meatballs and cook vegetable pancakes;
Serve vegetable sticks with homemade sauces;
Make vegetable chips with potatoes, beets, carrots, pumpkins and other vegetables;
Experiment with spices;
Grill: vegetable skewers, hot corn, warm roasted vegetable salad.
Make it a rule to go to a restaurant with the whole family for lunch or dinner at least once every couple of weeks.