When a baby is 6 to 8 months old, their feeding habits begin to change as they start solid food.
During this time, most babies are adventurous with new foods, so it is a wonderful chance to encourage healthy eating habits.
This overview will help you keep track of how much, what and when to feed your baby.
Solid Food Tips
- Begin with small amounts. Offer a teaspoon of new solid food and gradually increase as your baby shows increasing interest
- Start with offering single ingredient foods first, such as fruits, vegetables or cereal.
- When starting solid food, offer your baby only one new food at a time. Wait five to seven days before offering a different new solid food. This will give you time to see if your baby may be allergic to any foods.
- The American of Academy of Pediatrics recommends 100% fruit juice NOT be introduced to infants. Whole fruits provide more complete nutrition.
- Healthy infants do not usually need to drink water, since breast milk or formula gives them the hydration they need. However, when solid food is first introduced, you may give your baby water in a sippy cup as practice in using a cup and straw.
- Unless advised by your child's pediatrician, do not restrict fat and cholesterol. Calories, fat and cholesterol is important to the development of children's brains, nervous system and general growth.
- Infants should not eat nuts, seeds, round candies, popcorn, hot dogs, hard raw fruits and vegetables, or uncut grapes. These foods are choking hazards. Always have your child sit down to eat or drink and supervise them while they are eating.
- Offer your child a wide variety of foods as early as possible in order to encourage healthy eating habits later.
- Begin single ingredient feedings in a soupy consistency and gradually thicken. Some babies do better with a thicker consistency food, so it will take some experimenting.
- Solid foods increase and formula or breast milk intake decreases.
- Fruit juices are not recommended until your baby is at least one year of age.