We understand that weaning your baby is a big important change and one that needs to be done correctly. This is a special milestone as its the first time your baby has real food.
The department of health recommends you wait around 6 months before weaning your baby but truth be told it depends as some babies can be weaned before from around the 4 month and some may take slightly longer before they can be weaned. There was a study released by Kings College London and St George’s University of London in June 2018 to say babies can be weaned before 6 months and this can also help them sleep better as well.
Signs Your Baby Is Ready For Weaning
Well as your baby starts to grow and get stronger they will get a bigger appetite especially when they are rolling around and pushing themselves off the floor so they will need more than milk to support their growth.
The Top 3 Signs To Look For
- When they start picking objects up and putting them to their mouths
- When they can sit up and hold their head steady
- When they can swallow food and not get much around their mouth
Which Weaning Methods Should You Use
There are 2 main methods for eaning your baby which are spoon feeding and baby led weaning we will explain more about these methods below
Spoon feeding – Will require you to start off with baby purees and gradually change texture while introducing finger foods over the next couple months.
Baby led weaning – You can skip the spoon feeding using the puree and go straight to solids but you will have wait until around 6 months for this and also you will have to let your baby take the lead and allow him/her to eat at their own pace while you eat next to them.
We have seen recently that baby-led weaning growing fast in popularity over the last few years but you can actually mix both methods as well as none is better than the other as they both reach the same goals.
When Is It Not Safe To Wean A Baby
- If the age of your baby is less than 4 months old
- If under 6 months for the baby led weaning method
- If you have a family history of allergies or your baby has coeliac disease you will first want to check with your health visitor or GP.
What False Signals Will My Baby Give For Weaning Readiness
- Wanting extra milk feeds – Your baby may just be going through a natural growth spurt which will make him more hungry
- Getting up in the night – If your baby starts to wake up more in the night this does not mean your baby is ready to be weaned unlike the old wife tale going around about this
- Putting Hands In Mouth – If your baby is chewing their hands a lot this is normal as they love to put things in their mouth as this is how they explore the world around them so don’t be quick to think they need solid foods.
What Are The Best Foods For Weaning My Baby
From the numerous polls and studies untaken and from the polls off forums and the health professionals they have all come up with the same common foods that are best for your little bundle of joy.
So these are apples, bananas, porridge, pear, sweet potato, potatoes and other similar foods. You can easily chop these foods up and make a puree from them so we recommend you stick to these foods, to begin with.
Are There Any Foods I Should Avoid
Yes, you should avoid the following foods below at first due to your babies digestive system and potential allergies, food intolerances he/she may have.
- Anything containing wheat or gluten (wheat flour, bread, breakfast cereals made from wheat, rusks, spaghetti or other kinds of pasta)
Honey (should be avoided until 12 months)
- Nuts, including peanuts and peanut products
- Soft or unpasteurized foods
- Fish and shellfish
- Cow’s milk
- Plus always avoid adding salt or sugar to any food for your baby
Can My Baby Have 5-a-day Fruit And Veg
Yes, of course, this will help them keep a balanced diet while weaning but just make the portion sizes very small. The benefits of a babies 5-a-day are they will get all the vitamins and minerals they need while getting a good source of fiber and give them a healthy gut and help with any constipation.
They have also been studies carried out that show that babies introduced to fruit and vegetables early on have a higher chance of eating these healthy and delicious foods into their adulthood.
So there you have it, we hope we have covered how to wean your baby around the 4 – 6 month range and the pros and cons of weaning. If you enjoyed our article then give it a share below.