Health Canada recommends waiting until babies are six months old before starting foods other than breastmilk or formula. You will know your baby is ready for solid foods when he:
- sits up without support.
- holds food in his mouth without pushing it out.
- shows interest in foods others are eating.
- opens his mouth when he sees food coming his way.
- lets you know he doesn’t want food by leaning back or turning his head away.
Six month old babies need small amounts of food that are high in energy and nutrients. Here are some foods that will give your baby the iron he needs:
- pureed cooked meats, poultry and de-boned fish
- mashed cooked egg
- mashed, well-cooked dried beans, peas and lentils.
Here are some handy tips for getting baby started on solid foods:
- Let your baby open his mouth before you feed him.
- Start with single foods. Avoid mixtures until all single foods are tried.
- Wait about 4 days before trying another new food. If your baby develops an allergic reaction, it is easier to know which food has caused the problem.
- Let your baby touch the food in the dish or on the spoon. Let him feed himself with fingers or hands as soon as he shows interest.
Feeding is a time of learning and enjoyment for baby and family. It can also be messy. Be patient when offering new foods and when your baby is learning to self feed.
For more information contact your local Public Health Nurse.
~ Contributed by:
Heather Torrie, Public Health Nutritionist
Sunrise Health Region