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Starting solids
Being 'ready', BLW??? etc

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#1 Loz07

Posted 29 December 2012 - 04:10 PM


So DD is 4.5mo, currently EBF (occasional EBM), and I'm starting to think about solids. I'm in no great rush, but my GP did advise that the new guidelines recommend from 4mo for allergies etc (side note - she mentioned this before this was in the mainstream media so I'm quite impressed that she is so up to date original.gif . Oh, and I know she is referring to the Allergy/Immunology society guidelines and that the NHMRC have not officially been releaed yet) so I'm thinking of starting in the new year (around the 5mo mark - a compromise I think original.gif ).

I know some people talk about the baby being 'ready' - how do you know if they are? Everything goes into DD's mouth at the moment, but I know that's a developmental stage... She watches me drinking coffee, and will suck happily on whatever food DH sticks in her mouth for her to suck on/slobber over (I drew the line at the octopus ball rolleyes.gif and he's just doing fruit or veg...). Any other signs?

Also, can somebody give me a basic intro to BLW or some good links? (side note to mods - maybe there should be a sticky about what is BLW / basics / links / tips etc? The BLW thread gets a bit long to go thru to try and pick out info from general BLW disussion...)

Can you do a bit of 'traditional' solids (eg puree), plus some BLW??? (once she has a bit more hand-mouth control...)

Any info appreciated

Thanks original.gif

#2 Marchioness Flea

Posted 29 December 2012 - 04:23 PM

umm, if she' s started having food in her mouth then you've started her on solids.
If she can sit up and hold her head up well and watches you eating etc she sounds ready.
just make sure it's not raw carrot and hard foods which pose a choking risk.
You can do purees if she'll open her mouth for a spoon, but mine never did!

#3 GamerMum

Posted 29 December 2012 - 04:30 PM

We started DD on solids last week (16 weeks). Nothing major, we give her a bit of whatever we are eating when we have dinner. During the day she is on full bottles apart from the occasional bit of watermelon to suck on. She doesn't eat a great deal, and I don't expect her to. She plays with it, spits it out, prefers to watch us eat etc. I'm happy with this so she has an association with food.

We had two main reasons for starting her so young. One is that I have several severe allergies that my Dad also has, so docs have always been worried that they may be genetic, and exposing her to said foods early might help with that (Tomatoes and citrus fruits are the main culprits).

The other was that she is waking up absolutely starving at 2am and drinks an entire bottle in one go, which she never does any other time of the day, preferring to play with it and take an hour or so to drink it (she's never been a good feeder). The nurse suggested trying her on food to fill her belly up a bit so she gets a better sleep. She's still waking up at 2am, but she isn't screaming at me like she's dieing of starvation, and quickly goes back to sleep until at least 6am.

It's all trial and error, and I'm not expecting her to actually want food or have too much interest in it for a few months, but we'll see how she goes.

#4 Loz07

Posted 29 December 2012 - 04:31 PM

ha ha, should have said she's not actually swallowing any solids (except maybe some fruit juice etc that she's sucked out...) but I see your point biggrin.gif
She doesn't sit independently, but she stays sort of upright when seated in a pram etc (bit of the drunken lean, but otherwise ok). Head control is fine

#5 Loz07

Posted 29 December 2012 - 04:32 PM

PS - also meant to add - when starting solids, I know they follow a feed to begin with, but when do they replace a feed (ie, you drop a feed?)

#6 elmo_mum

Posted 29 December 2012 - 05:08 PM

we started purees at about 4.5 months corrected...
ds was looking at us eating, and trying to to eat

started rice cereal... then went to veges...

was told he should be doing 5/6 feeds a day.. so we kinda just add an extra solid in.

we are trying to start "real" foods.. but hes struggling to hold the food and put it in his mouth.

if you do blw, just feed blw food when u eat... you may still need to have the full bf as well

#7 José

Posted 29 December 2012 - 06:30 PM

I'm also interested in this thread and in links to info about starting solids. Child health nurse said I need to start DS on solids at 3.5 months because I am going back to work when he is 4 months. I'm not completely comfortable with that and would like more info.

#8 Loz07

Posted 29 December 2012 - 08:13 PM

Hi Feliz

From what I understand there are two main approaches to starting solids - 'traditional' or baby led weaning (BLW). The 'traditional' is rice cereal then purees then soft foods, then finger foods etc approach, only 1 food at a time... You can see more info at the CYH SA website here (this is the 'safe' approach...)

As far as I can gather, BLW is considered a more 'natural' approach (they didn't have stick blenders in the caves did they?) and it is about letting the baby eat what they can, when they are ready - ie skipping the puree and going straight to (soft) finger foods. I think. This is what I'm hoping for some more info on (anyone? unsure.gif )

Also, I didn't think any health professional bodies recommended starting solids before 4mo (earliest) unless there was a medical reason to do so (not gaining weight etc)

Hope this helps you a bit original.gif

#9 Marchioness Flea

Posted 29 December 2012 - 08:26 PM

Starting solids JUST because you're going back to work makes no sense to me.
Every other baby has bottles at day care, I'm sure yours can too!

#10 Kay1

Posted 04 January 2013 - 11:20 AM

There is a book called Baby Led Weaning which I am currently reading which explains everything you want to know about BLW. I got it on my kindle. Its so interesting. I will be doing it with DS3 soon. original.gif

#11 Feral-as-Meggs

Posted 04 January 2013 - 11:29 AM

Haha you have started!  You may think nothing much is going in, but they can be surprisingly efficient with slobbering.

#12 Natttmumm

Posted 04 January 2013 - 11:33 AM

With DD2 we started giving a few teaspoons of fruit and veg at around 5 months after her milk. She didn't really show interest until 7 months. We did a bit of blw by putting a few bits of food down and seeing what's she did. By about 8 months she was eating toast etc.
Just take it slow and don't get too worried about it

#13 Feral timtam

Posted 04 January 2013 - 11:52 AM

With DS1 I did BLW. I would steam chunky vegetables and put them on his high chair tray for him to experiment with. I did toy with doing purees with him, but his first solid food was a strip of curried beef he'd pinched off his fathers plate at a family get together.

I figured if he was able to eat a strip of curried beef without help then he certainly did not need me to shovel pureed foods into his mouth biggrin.gif

DD was traditionally weaned with purees, I was very sick for a long time after her birth and MIL took over the weaning process for me. Purees were the method familiar to MIL so that's what she did.

DS2 we're doing a combination approach, MIL gives him rice cereal or a puree during the part of the day she takes him and it's BLW when he is in my care.

#14 AntiBourgeoisie

Posted 04 January 2013 - 12:18 PM

I don't think you need to ascribe to a 'theory' when it comes to food. Like all things baby related, the reality is somewhere in the middle.
Most people who don't read parenting websites do a combination. A bit of purée/fine mash, and bit of chunky stuff off their own plates. By baby number 2+, many mothers are too busy to bother making special purées, and so a purée is just whatever the rest of the family is eating thrown in a blender. I don't think feeding a 12 monther puréed pears is necessary, not do I think it wholly appropriate to hand a six monther a chicken drumstick as their first food!
I think the key points i took away are1. Feed your baby food that tastes like food, not disgusting random purée combinations of whatever you have in the cupboard and you think is 'healthy' for babies (carrot, pumpkin, pear, and avocado is gross)2. Start with smoother consistency food (eg porridge with grated fruit, which you might also eat for breakfast yourself) and work up to the chicken drumstick.3. Introduce potential allergens singly (eg eggs, nuts, strawberries) but you really don't need to introduce every. single. food. one at a time and for three days. Gosh, if you did that, it would take months to get them up to eating 'adult food'. 4. Start with breast/bottle feed first when you start and around 8 months you can give solids before milk. 5. Start with one meal a day (often lunch) then add one extra meal every couple weeks, then when wel established on three meals a day, add snacks.6. Don't judge how much your baby will eat by the baby food jars. Some eat more, some less. Most eat less at the start. If they eat a few spoons at the start, they're doing well. 7. Puréed food is not 'evil', it won't result in your child inevitably being picky or fat, BLW is not a guaranteed choking hazard; again I think the truth lies in between. Shoveling food into your kids mouth when they are turning their heads away and are full will make them fat. Not feeding your child a variety of 'normal' family foods makes them picky. Giving them nuts, raisins, hot dog/sausages, hard lollies, and chunks of carrot/apple is a choking hazard. Don't follow or criticize the opposing methods blindly - understand their pros and cons and choose the bits that work for you.

Finally the 4 months for allergens is actually a really high quality but incomplete study. They only looked at introducing allergens at 4 months and after 12 months. They didn't actually look at six months, which is when the NHMRC currently suggests introducing solids. The take home message is that less kids developed allergies when allergens were given at 4 months vs waiting until 12 months, but there is utterly no current evidence to suggest that giving them at four months is better than giving them at six months. None at all. So in this context, I would wait until your baby is ready to actually consume solids - sits up well with support, holds her head up with no wobble, can move food to the back of her mouth and swallow - before giving solids. A baby who can't support herself is at risk of choking. Given there's no evidence that waiting a few weeks increases the allergy risk, I think you're better to wait until she is 'stable' enough to decrease the choking risk.

#15 CG123

Posted 04 January 2013 - 12:19 PM

QUOTE (Loz07 @ 29/12/2012, 05:32 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
PS - also meant to add - when starting solids, I know they follow a feed to begin with, but when do they replace a feed (ie, you drop a feed?)

From my experience with DS1 (now 2 and a half, so info could have changed), you start solids the "traditional" way at about 4-4.5 months. Baby has milk feed (breast or bottle) THEN solids once a day, then twice and so on.

From about 6-9 months, start offering solids first, then a milk feed.

If you start introducing solids at 6 months you still follow this process, but the change from milk then solid to solid then milk would be 9-12 months.

Don't know much about BLW other than skipping the puree/mash stage and moving straight onto finger foods. Will need to research both approaches as DS2 will be ready in no time!

ETA- it was recommended to me to give first solids in the first half of the day. So mid-morning or lunch. This gives you an opportunity to see if your LO is allergic to anything and act upon it. If introducing foods at dinner time, you may put them to bed not realising there has been a reaction.

Edited by CG123, 04 January 2013 - 12:28 PM.

#16 Phoenix Blue

Posted 04 January 2013 - 06:41 PM

DD is 7.5 months and we started solids around 5+ months. Just go with the flow, do what works best for you, your family, and your baby.

We did a combo of puree and finger foods to begin with. Like PP said, steamed vegies at dinner when she sat up at the table with us, then I'd try some pureed fruit or cereal or whatever at lunch time. Some babies will show a preference straight away, others will refuse everything, some with eat everything is sight and look for more, some it's always hit and miss.

DD has been my faster developer (out of 3) with eating solids. She is already onto 3 big meals, and the occasional snack. We've just dropped to 4 breastfeeds this week. She loves her food, and it has made the transition easier. She is now eating our food, mushed with a fork or a quick whiz in the blender, so with small lumps, but also I do the purees/jars because it is quick and easy, and I'm busy! She'll have some finger food at each meal also. As a PP said, it doesn't have to be one or the other. Try it all and see what you, and they, like.

Good luck. Solids can be fun, and messy!

#17 Loz07

Posted 05 January 2013 - 08:32 AM

Thanks for all the replies - lot of useful information. I have been giving her a little bit of rice cereal for the past 4 days (I'd bought it so figured I would try it...), with apple mixed in for the last two.

I've also offered a chunk of apple the last two days - she took it nd broke a few bits off the first day (including a large-ish bit tht she ggged/choked on a little! ohmy.gif But coughed it up thankfully), last night she was tired tho and not interested, so it went back in the fridge.

it was recommended to me to give first solids   in the first half of the day. So mid-morning or lunch. This gives you an   opportunity to see if your LO is allergic to anything and act upon it.   If introducing foods at dinner time, you may put them to bed not   realising there has been a reaction.

Hadn't thoght of this... thanks, will introduce new foods earlier (had been giving an early dinner)

Finally the 4 months for allergens is actually a really high quality but incomplete study.

Interesting, thanks AntiBourgeoisie - do you have a ref for the study? Lots of good info too thanks

Thanks original.gif

#18 Marchioness Flea

Posted 05 January 2013 - 08:40 AM

I wouldn't offer apple chunks yet, they can be a choking risk.
Look up BLW and see the foods they say are safe.
Don't give whole grapes either. Gagging and choking are 2 different things as well. gagging FREAKS YOU OUT!! But is actually good for them as they learn how to move food around in their mouths. Choking is silent and deadly.

#19 Loz07

Posted 05 January 2013 - 09:06 AM

Sorry - didn't make it clear, it was steamed apple. That's ok right?

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