The best time to offer solid food to babies is the time when babies can sit upright and unattended, have head and neck control and show interest in the food. Now, it’s the choice of the mother as to what approach she will use.
There are two known ways: the Traditional Weaning and the Baby-led weaning.
The traditional way is when the mother takes the lead and the baby is spoon-fed. Baby-led Weaning is about the baby taking the lead. There are advantages and disadvantages.
Advantages of Traditional Weaning:
- It’s not messy
- You don’t need to worry about choking
Disadvantages of Traditional Weaning:
- The baby can’t communicate that he is already full
- This will lead to picky eaters
- The baby’s ability to grasp things, explore the food is not practiced
Advantages of Baby-led Weaning:
- THE BABY TAKES THE LEAD
- You can eat together with the baby
- The baby will develop his pincer grasp
- The baby will use his sense of sight, smell, touch, hearing, and taste
- The baby will explore the food and will be less picky
Disadvantages of Baby Led Weaning:
- It is usually super messy
- You need to be extra careful with the food sizes you offer
- You need to know the difference between gagging and choking
- You need to deal with inexperienced people who are worried about Baby-led Weaning
During the baby’s first month of eating solids, you may opt for the Traditional Weaning, following proper feeding procedures. Proper feeding includes following the strict guidelines of introducing particular foods to babies to avoid allergies. Instead of offering it every three consecutive days, you can adjust it to two days, until you reach the point that the baby can now adapt and you are already confident about offering it every day. Make sure to study the history of food allergy in your family, especially between the mother or the father. Ideally, after a month, the baby will get the hang of it and will look forward to eating the food by himself. Say, for example, a slice of ripe banana. By that time, you may now consider transitioning to Baby-led Weaning.
So what is the best time to offer solid food to babies? Most often, pediatricians advise that the best time to offer solid food to babies is when they reach six months.
Moms, it is up to you on how you feed your baby. It is a matter of time, practice, patience and perseverance. Plus a lot of TLC’s! YOUR BABY, YOUR CHOICE! What is important is you are able to nourish your baby, you are able to let him grow happily, and you are able to let him live his life to the best that you can offer.