Step by Step to Starting Solids
Please note the following information is a guide only and for babies that are old enough and ready to start solids. Ministry of Health and Plunket recommend starting solids at 6 months. If you have any health concerns at all for your baby please do not hesitate to contact your doctor or health professional.
Week One - Two
Start by offering one meal per day either breakfast or lunch, whatever is easiest for you and baby's routine. Make sure baby has had a milk feed beforehand, half an hour to an hour later put baby in feeding chair and offer 1-2 teaspoons of puree, start with a vegetable like Just Kumara or Just Pumpkin. You might like to add babies milk to the puree so baby recognizes the flavor's and may be more appealing.
Offer a different fruit or vegetable from our Just Range every 3-5 days and slowly increase the quantity to suit baby's appetite. Start to offer sips of cool boiled water to baby during meals, this helps keep things moving.
Week Two - Three
When baby is eating 1 - 2 tablespoons, add another meal to the day, either lunch or breakfast whichever is the latter. Once baby has had Just Apple & Just Pear introduced to there diet they can now start on the Gourmet Baby Organic Fruitblocks.
Once they have tried Just Pumpkin, Just Kumara & Just Carrot they can start on the respective meat in the Maincourse range. Offer 1 - 2 tablespoons and follow baby's cues if they want to eat more feed them more, again ensure they have had a milk feed beforehand.
Week Three - Four
If you think baby is ready add another meal to the day follow baby's cues, if they are hungry enough they may be ready now or in another week or two. Now baby has tried more flavours and the appetite is increasing try offering a savoury as a maincourse and a Fruitblock for dessert.
Its surprising how much room they have left to eat some more when they get a yummy fruit treat after the first course, it also keeps them interested as they know that the sweet will come eventually.
In the beginning stages you will want almost runny consistency for your puree, it is recommended to add baby's milk to get the right consistency and helps that it is a familiar taste for baby. Start with either a single vegetable or fruit mixed with babies milk. Start to thicken the puree up as baby gets use to the new flavours and textures.
Introduce a new food every 3-5 days try to always offer new foods in the morning or at lunchtime this way if they have an allergic reaction you are then able to deal with it during the day. Once they have tried a couple of new foods you can then start mixing them together for new and dfferent flavours. Try not to offer only fruit as babies can develop a sweet tooth and you may struggle with savoury dishes.
Follow baby's cues, keep offering food if they are keen for more and if they want to stop then let them stop. Forcing baby to eat can be a very unpleasant experience for both you and baby, they are good at knowing how much they need. If baby doesn't like a food try not to give up on it, offer it again in a few days or mix it with a food baby likes.
3 - 5 Day Rule
When starting solids, following the 3-5 day rule helps identify if baby has any issues like allergies or sensitivities with certain foods. The rule is to introduce a single food one at a time with a space of 3-5 days between new introductions. Once your happy that baby is ok with the introduced single food you can then introduce another one. When they have tried multiple foods, you can then start mixing them together for new flavours.
Introduce new foods in the morning or around lunchtime, this way if they are going to have an adverse reaction your able to deal with it during the day rather than at night when you and baby need your sleep. The food culprit will be easliy identifiable as you will know exactly what foods baby has tried and can identify the potential cause of the reaction. Allergic reactions generally occur within 24 hours of consumption and digestive issues such as tummy pain, gas, bloating, constipation or diahrrea may take a little longer to appear.
While it is important to follow the 3-5 day rule, its also important for babies to try new flavours and expand their palette. Gourmet Baby range of foods is an excellent solution for babies growing appetite.