Dad’s Guide to Baby’s First Foods
So far, your baby has only needed breast milk or formula as a source of nutrients. However, she must move on to solid food to maintain her growth. It is essential to be aware of a baby’s first food when that occurs. Health professionals recommend waiting until they’re around six months old before beginning solids for babies younger than six months. Solids are more like purees and mushes than solid food. However, your little one may be ready a few weeks earlier than that mark.
Signs that your child is ready to eat solid food
You can tell your baby is ready for solids or baby’s first food by the following signs.
- The baby looks a bit hungry after a milk feeding – he’s waiting for more to come.
- Make noticeable chewing faces with your fork as you put it into your mouth. Pay attention to your mouth as you eat.
- She was trying to grab food within reach or pointing at the food on the table.
- Holding his head up and taking food with his tongue for long periods. A child who isn’t ready for solid food will push the food out again, a reflex commonly seen in infants.
The best advice for Dads or any parents is to observe their child and be patient when it comes to feeding the baby’s first food.
Here are the first foods that you should feed your baby
It would be best if you pureed or solid mashed foods thoroughly so that they are almost runny so that you don’t upset your child’s stomach. Since your baby’s digestion is still developing and doesn’t have any teeth yet, first solid foods should be pureed or mashed. Among good first foods are beans, squash, and carrots.
- Cooked and pureed apples, pears, apricots, peaches, pumpkin, peas, sweet potatoes, and green beans.
- It is best to give your baby iron-rich cereal or rice. If you mix them with breast milk or formula, the baby gets more iron.
- Bananas and avocados are uncooked and mashed.
Here are some ways to introduce solid food to your baby:
Before giving your baby any formula, give him a milk feeding. Solid food is introduced after milk feeding for up to 8 months.
Make sure your baby does not react to one food for three to five consecutive days to make sure there is no reaction.
Your first food should be tried when your baby appears relaxed and happy, not when she’s starving, tired, or angry. Early in the afternoon or at lunchtime are good times to introduce it.
The carrots may not be appealing at first, but that’s okay. You can try again tomorrow, and if the baby still doesn’t seem interested, you can wait a few days before trying again. You may have to try ten different foods before discovering your princess’s passion for one.
You should let your baby decide how much to eat. She will likely not enjoy consuming vegetables if forced to eat them. Take her appetite into consideration. Begin by giving her a few teaspoons of vegetables.
Since babies have an empathetic sense of taste, they don’t require salt, sugar, or spices to flavour their food. A baby’s first food should be neutral, nutrient-rich, and easy to digest.
Some people insist on heating their baby’s food, but this comes down to baby’s preference rather than parental taste. Before spooning him food that’s been heated, test that it’s not scalding hot before offering it to him.
- Unless you like orange patterns on your kitchen floor, you’ll need a high chair, lots of bibs, and some protective plastic mat.
- It’s easier for your baby’s gums to use a plastic feeding spoon, which is smaller and gentler. When you compare it to your baby’s tiny mouth, plastic spoons seem enormous.
- Food can become less runny and more textured as your baby gets older.
Routines and foods to try
Mixing different foods will allow your baby to experience a variety of tastes once they have mastered solid food. Introduce meat into her diet because she needs more iron to support the growth of her rapidly developing brain at six months old.
Here are some food options to add to the baby’s menu:
- It is essential to puree, mince, or make a broth of meats such as beef, chicken, liver, and lamb so infants can eat them.
- The yolk of a hard-boiled egg
- Melon, plum, and nectarines that have not been cooked
- Toast, cereals, and crackers make great finger foods.
Introduce these foods after the baby has been eight months old:
- Spaghetti, cabbage, and creamed corn cooked together
- Fish, except if your family is known to react negatively to fish, in which case you should wait until your child is a year old
- Rice and pasta
- Unless you have a family history of nut allergies, wait until your child is three years old before giving it smooth peanut butter.
- Foods made from soy, such as tempeh and tofu
- Kiwifruit, oranges, strawberries, pineapples, and tomatoes
If there is a dairy allergy in your family, wait until your baby is a year old before giving them yogurt, cheese, custard, and ice cream. When babies start with solid food, the baby’s first food can be a good starting point.
Eight months after your baby’s birth, you can introduce finger foods such as slices of soft fruit, mashed potatoes, cooked vegetables, and pasta. Keeping your baby away from hard popcorn kernels, hard nuts, or hard candy will prevent them from choking.
A baby’s diet will become increasingly dependent upon solid food after eight months and even replace milk. In addition to your child’s three daily meals, breastmilk or formula snacks can be given mid-morning and afternoon if your doctor approves.
It is important to encourage family meals from the start. Bring the highchair up to the table with your two children so that you can enjoy a meal together. Through your actions, you will teach your baby the mechanics of eating to understand how to share a meal with others and eat healthy food. You can find more information about baby’s first food on Yummy Valley’s blog.
Baby’s first food tips for dads:
Make sure your baby does not inherit your food preferences. To illustrate this point, if you don’t like broccoli, you shouldn’t introduce it to your baby in a manner indicating you don’t like it. After all, why should your baby enjoy broccoli if you don’t like it? Whenever you serve food, make encouraging noises, such as “Yummmyyy broccoli.” To feed the baby’s first food, make the feeding process fun.
Tips for new dads who want to start their baby’s introduction to solid food successfully will allow you to create your baby’s introduction to solids on the right foot. As you prepare for each stage, not only will you ensure that your baby is ready for success, but you will also be able to rest easy before your infant’s first feeding. To obtain more information, you can always contact your pediatrician. We hope you enjoy the journey!
As your baby’s first solid food, try Yummy Valley’s, Millet Health Mix.