Starting Solids

Baby First Food

Whenever I ask anyone about when to start Amalia on solid foods, I get the same answer: Between 4 and 6 months. Well that’s a pretty long stretch! She’s currently 4.5 months and my gut says she isn’t quite ready yet… And one thing I’ve learned as a mother so far is to always listen to your gut.

This is our plan as of now…

Note: Please remember that I’m not a pediatrician, I’m just sharing my own personal experience. Everything I’ve written has been run by, and approved by, Amalia’s doctor, which you should do for your babies as well!

When: At Christmastime when she’s 5 months old.

What: Anel and I have discussed this ad nauseam with each other, our pediatrician, friends and family and finally settled on what we both felt was right: Sweet potato. We (and our ped) both wanted to start her on a vegetable that’s easy to digest as opposed to cereal. We want her to eat “real” food from the get-go.

Going slowly: I’m pretty sure most moms know this by now, but they tell you to only introduce one food at a time to test out of the baby is allergic to it or not. So we’ll give her sweet potato for 2-3 days, then add in avocado which will be her second food.

Seasoning: My 7-year old (half) brother Jackson is the best eater I know. When he was 4, he was dousing his food with hot sauce, drinking green juice for a snack, and eating every cuisine from Thai to Indian food. I asked his mom what her secret was and she said seasoning his food from the beginning. If you give your baby avocado, put sea salt on it! If you get them used to bland foods, that’s what they’ll want to eat going forward. Instead, make their food taste good to you.

Healthy fats: I thought for sure when I asked Amalia’s doctor about cooking her food with butter, ghee, or olive oil, she would say not to do it. My more holistic friends swore by it, but it made me nervous. Turns out,  I was wrong! She explained that babies need a lot of fat in their first two years, and it’s perfectly safe (and healthy) to give them good fats from the beginning.

Thoughts on rice cereal: I feel like among the moms I know, there is quite a divide on whether or not to feed your baby rice cereal which used to be the go-to for first foods. When we asked our ped about it, she said she definitely wants us to mix in baby cereal with whatever fruits and veggies we decide to give her because it’s fortified with iron (which babies need to grow strong brains!), but prefers oatmeal to rice cereal because it’s easier for babies to digest.

Products for feeding: My grandmother bought us the Oxo Sprout high chair for Christmas (in white/navy) and we’re getting Amalia used to sitting in it, so she knows that it’s a safe place. So far she loves to play with her toys while sitting in the chair. I also have a Beaba Babycook to make some of her food myself. What else do we need?

Ok so here’s what I’m asking you today. If you already have an older baby/child, when did you first feed them and what was their first food? If you have a little baby like Amalia, when/what are you planning  to feed them? 

Reminder: Mom talk is made up of shorter posts where I share a “momproblem” I’m having and ask for your advice. The idea is that all moms can benefit from the comments below! Have an idea for mom talk? Send it my way: julia@lemonstripes.com

Image via Babycenter.