Best Foods To Introduce Your Baby To When Stopping Breastfeeding

Babies unfortunately grow up way too fast! As much as we hate it as parents, our little bundles of joy don’t stay cute and cuddly forever. The first couple of months is said to be the hardest of times with a new baby around, but it is also the time when babies seem to eat the most. They are like bottomless pits, eating every 2 or 3 hours.

Eventually the moment will come when you introduce your baby to solid foods. When that time comes you shouldn’t feed your baby just any kind of food. There are specific foods a parent should introduce their baby to when the time comes, especially if the baby will be slowly weaned off of breast milk.

The first type of “solid” food that every parent should (and most likely will) introduce their baby to is cereal. Infant cereal if one of the most popular infant food on the market as it is the easiest food for your baby to digest.

When you are first going to purchase this infant cereal make sure to stick with a single grain kind of cereal such as rice, oat or even barley. Make sure to stay clear of wheat for the time being as many babies and infants can be allergic to it.

Once you have the cereal you can easily mix a small amount of it into your infant’s formula or breast milk until it has the consistency of soup. By doing this your baby will feel fuller longer and thus will eat less often throughout the day and will probably not need a feeding during the night.

You should never mix the cereal with anything sweet such as bananas, juice or applesauce. The idea is that you never want to have your baby only wanting foods that are sweet with sugar. It’s best to not tempt them especially when they are first starting to eat solid foods. The key is to start them on a healthy diet right out of the gate.

The second type of solid food that you should introduce your baby to is both fruits and vegetables. Obviously both fruits and veggies are not only wholesome and filling for your baby but they are packed with nutritious vitamins and minerals. Fruits and vegetables are also the only types of food that are less likely to cause any food reactions.

These foods are much tougher to introduce to your baby because of their lack of a flavor that your baby will take to. If they don’t eat the food right away try again at every feeding and every day until they willingly eat it. When introducing your baby to these nutritious foods stick with milder colors such as light orange, light yellow and light green.

Remember the color of your babies stool will be affected by whatever they eat and you don’t want to have a scare if your baby suddenly has a bright blue poopy diaper.

Introducing your baby to solid foods is a much easier process than many people think, especially first time parents. The key is to start your baby on a healthy diet as soon as they start to eat solid foods and to give the right types of food that will be easily digested by their little tummies. Remember if your baby doesn’t take to the solid food right away, keep persevering. Most babies reject certain foods at some point, it’s normally just a matter of time before they improve and eat what you give them happily.

Important Considerations for Buying Your Baby’s Food

When the times comes to start buying real food for your baby there are a multitude of things to consider and the choice can be overwhelming.

Unfortunately we can’t just be lazy and buy any food we see on the shelves if we are to keep our kids in good health.

So, what should you look for when buying baby food for your baby?

There are many different criteria that have to be considered, such as:-

  • The age of baby it is recommended for
  • Vitamin and mineral content
  • Quality of the product
  • Country of origin
  • The price will also be an important consideration

Between the ages of 0-4 months a baby should be consuming nothing but breast milk or formula (or a combination of the two if necessary). Your baby should be on a complete liquid diet as their little tummies are too sensitive for solid foods just yet. The time will soon come to introduce them to other foods after breastfeeding has finished.

Obviously the best option for any baby is their mother’s milk but sometimes a woman just can’t produce enough for their little one and they must either supplement formula into the feedings or give them solely that. Some babies at this age will seem like they are eating all the time and that is actually very true. The only reason why they do this is because their little bodies are growing so quickly and they need to eat a lot to sustain themselves.

If you are going to purchase formula for your little one look for formulas that have plenty of Iron, Vitamins A, B and C. They need these essential vitamins and minerals to help them grow quickly.

Introducing Solid Food

After 4 months of age a baby will start having a larger appetite and starting a solid food diet becomes essential to continue rapid growth. This is the age when infant cereal is introduced into their diet and a parent will notice that their baby’s appetite for formula begins to diminish.

However when it comes to choosing the right infant cereal for your baby, the right consistency and texture should be taken into account since these properties will help your baby to develop the necessary eating skills every baby needs moving into childhood.

Never start your baby on infant cereal earlier than recommended. If you think your baby is ready to begin trying solid foods make sure to consult your baby’s pediatrician beforehand.

There are many nutrients and vitamins that your baby will need in their food regardless if they are eating solid foods or starting to drink less formula and breast milk. These nutrients and vitamins are:-

NUTRIENT AMOUNT (MINIMUM)
Protein 13 grams
Iron 10 milligrams
Vitamin A 400 unit grams
Vitamin C 49 milligrams
Calcium 210 milligrams

These nutrients and vitamins are essential for a babies overall health and growth and will lead to a healthier life for your baby in the long run.

There are many things to consider when purchasing a variety of foods for your baby or infant. Above all you should look at the quantity of vitamins and minerals that each food provides as these are essential to helping your baby to grow up happy and healthy. You should also consider price as the cost of these foods will be coming out of your own pocket, but be aware of overly cheap baby food as it may indicate lower quality.

If you have any questions regarding formula, solid foods or the quantity of food you should be feeding your baby it is always important to talk to your baby’s pediatrician to help ease your mind.

Photo by ParentingPatch [CC-BY-SA-3.0]