Weaning your little one can be such a fun time for both parent and baby. For parent, you can find new products, produce and recipes for your little one. For your little one its a world of discovering new flavour and textures (some you may not always like, but that’s where mummy and daddy get the funny baby pictures.) We wanted to share some tips and lessons we have learned along the way to help you along this wonderful journey!
When should I start weaning?
The NHS website states that your baby should start weaning at around 6 months old. Why 6 months? Well, the nutrients that baby gets from breast milk or formula is everything that they need up until the 6 month mark. If you begin to ween at 6 months, it gives baby time to develop enough that they can handle solid foods, and develop healthy eating habits that will last a lifetime!
What are signs that my baby is ready to wean?
There are 3 clear signs your baby is ready to start weaning and they are;
- Swallowing food instead of spitting it out
- Stay in a upright sitting position with a steady head
- Hand eye and mouth coordination meaning baby is able look at the food, pick it up and put it in their mouth independently.
Some behaviors are mistaken for signs baby is ready to start weaning like chewing fists or wanting extra feeds but these are just normal baby behaviors that aren’t necessarily signs they’re ready for solids.
Starting Baby’s Weaning Journey
A pro tip from us – make weaning as fun as possible for both you and baby, but also make it suit you and baby the best. Every baby is different, be it taste or texture likes and dislikes, appetite etc so don’t worry if your baby is ready to wean earlier or later than others. Offer your little ones a variety of food, and be patient and give your little one lots of praise and encouragement and of course enjoy the journey!
It is important to know what kind of food baby can have at each recommended age.
- 5-6 months – blended/runny puree. At first, baby will only need a small amount of food before their usual milk feed. Don’t worry too much about how much or little they eat as they will still be getting a lot of nutrients from the milk feeds, this is more for getting them used to new tastes and textures as well as swallowing more solid foods.
- 6-7 months – Smooth but slightly thicker puree with no lumps
- 7-8 months – thicker puree with more texture
- 8-9 months – minced or mashed with soft lumps
- 9+ minced and finely chopped.
It is important to be patient, especially at first.
You may love the foods you’re feeding baby but to them it’s all new! Give baby lots of time to get used to the process. Wait for them to show you they are hungry and full. It is important to let your little one enjoy playing with the food, touching and holding it to get used to it. If they are feeding themselves with their hands, let them try with a spoon too if the meal requires… it’s all part of the process!
Try to keep distractions to a minimal as much as you can at dinner time and let baby learn from copying your eating habits – if you can sit down together at meal times as much as possible.
If you are ever unsure of any part of the process, the NHS website offers detailed, super helpful advice for each step of the way! Click here for the NHS weaning page.
We hope you enjoyed our weaning week 2020 blog post! If you have any useful tips, make sure to comment them in our Instagram post to share with fellow parents!
Love, Team Ziggle x