*This is a guest post.
When starting first foods, it is the right time to try a variety of new textures and tastes. By the time your little one if 12 months old, he will be consuming the same but healthy foods with other family members. When the child is young, it is nice to take a portion of other members' meal and make it fit the texture your baby will take. Cow milk or infant formula can be used to assist crush, blend or mash the food. Do not add sugar, honey, or salt to food. You can also make your recipes as you get more confident in feeding the infant. Here are some of the things you need to know.
You should have goals
Like you set your business goals, so it is with your baby. Your primary goals for introducing the baby to first foods should include the following:
- Help the baby discover and like food
- Learn to be independent when feeding
- Participate in the communal experience of taking food in unison as a kinsfolk
- Increase the food range
- Prevent any dietary deficiencies
When is the right time to introduce your baby to complementary foods?
This is the question many parents. While every parent introduces her child to first foods at her own time, there is the right time to do so for every child. The right time to start the infant is when he/she begins to exhibit signs of readiness and interest. Majority of kids can be introduced when they are between four and six months. However, six months is the recommended age to start first foods. If you want to introduce your baby these foods watch for the following signs:
- The child can lean forward and sit up
- The infant can control her head
- The baby lets the caregiver or parent know she is satisfied by turning her head away from the food or milk.
- Shows interest in eating with other family members when food is served
- Asks or reaches for food when she sees food or other family members eating
- She picks up food and makes attempts to put in her mouth
In case your baby is showing these signs, she is ready for complementary foods. Therefore you should start giving her the nutritious baby food she has been missing. Some of the foods you should start with include:
- Foods rich in iron such as kidney beans, lentils, nuts, and meat
- Mushy and soft foods such as smooth yogurt, pureed meats, vegetables (cooked well), and legume puree
Do not give honey to kids under one year. This is because it honey may might botulism spores in adequate amounts to trigger sickness in infants less below one year. Doctors recommend that you only give your baby honey if she is two years and above.
Although in the past, parents were advised not to introduce kids to allergenic foods such as seafood; it is currently done the opposite. A scientific study has suggested introducing kids to allergenic foods to prevent them from developing allergies. You can go ahead and feed your baby allergenic foods.