What is weaning?Weaning is the first introduction of solid food to your infant. When you start weaning your baby you start from paste texture to lumpy and then solid food step by step. It is advisable not to wean baby before six months however you will find weaning jar food in supermarket from age 4 months.
How do you know when your baby is ready for weaning:As a first time mom you will be confuse how do you know your baby is ready for weaning? You might get different opinions from different sources but I will say you need to see sign of weaning in your baby. Each child is different and their needs are different too. Even in siblings you will notice differences.
Watch your BABY:
Before start weaning watch your baby carefully.Your baby's behavior will tell you if they are ready for weaning. As baby grows their hunger grows if your child is happily feeding on milk and sleeping well this mean you don't need to rush into weaning. When you notice that baby's sleep pattern looks disturb they keep waking up in middle of sleep and demand milk this mean milk is not enough to fulfill their hunger . Now you need to start weaning your baby.
But if your baby is only 4 months old and looks hungry I will suggest add formula milk before sleep. Some formulas are design to delay baby's weaning like Aptamil milk for hungry baby etc.
How to start:
Now once you have decided that you will wean your baby. Go easy on him. Always remember that so far baby was only on liquid milk, start from any cereal made by formula milk or water. If you want to use cows milk make sure your baby should be at least six months. Start giving them from few spoons a day. Best time is to use cereal at main lunch time. Then once you see your baby is settle on that cereal you can start giving him twice or try out different flavors one by one.
Jar food or ready made food is available massively in supermarket.These ready made food are healthy and very quick and easy way to wean your baby. Especially if you are in rush or with very busy routine you can rely on these ready made food. There are few things you need to know while you are using ready made food.
- Always check the age which is recommended on the food label.
- When you buy make sure you use them until they are valid.
- Once open your baby food do not store it longer then the recommended time on the food instruction. Usually you can use open food jar with in 24 hours or maximum 48 hours if you store in fridge.
Precautions while using jar food:
Jar food are easy and quick way to feed your baby but if there is any misuse of using or storing food it will cost your baby health .So you have to take following precautions while using baby food or jar food.
- Try to buy small jars so your baby can finish them in one go and you do not have to store it for later. It will save your money as well.
- When you warm up your jar food DO NOT USE MICROWAVE. Always use hot water or food warmer (bottle warmer) to warm baby's food. Best thing is if you are not sure your baby will eat all the food take the amount of food your baby usually eat warm it in hot water. Once its warm mix it and check that its not too hot for baby to eat (so they do not burn their mouth).
- Do not store warm food for later. Once its warm you use it and discard the left over.
- Do not put used spoon in the jar or food you want to store for later.
- If you are offering your baby any food first time keep an eye on your baby.If there is any sign of red spots or rash appear while feeding STOP RIGHT THERE. Your baby might be allergic to any ingredient used in the food.
Home Made baby food:
If you have time you can prepare your baby food by yourself. Things you have to consider are:
- Use fresh food items while preparing baby's food.
- Always use boiled water.
- Do not add chilies, or salt in the food.
- Discard left overs.
- If you have stored them in fridge warm it in hot water or on fire. DO NOT MICROWAVE.
- If you have frozen food so heat it up to boiling temperature so food is fully defrost and save to use.
- Before offering baby check that food is not to hot and suitable to put in baby's mouth.
- Keep food texture as puree or paste in the beginning then as your baby grows go on lumpy texture.