The guiding principle when it comes to starting solids and weaning is to let your baby take the lead with eating. Whilst it is hard to do at times, remember, it is your job to provide the her with healthy options but ultimately she will decide how much she eats.
Here are some guidelines to keep in mind:
- Wait for your baby to open her mouth before you feed her
- Let her touch her food – in the dish or on the spoon
- Allow her to feed herself with her fingers as soon as she shows an interest
- Feed your baby at her pace. Do not try to make her go slower or faster than she wants to go
- Stop feeding when your baby shows she has had enough. Do not force your baby to finish her food. A baby who is full will close her mouth, turn her head away, cover her mouth with her hand, shake her head “no”, or cry
- Do not put any food into your baby’s mouth without her permission
- Avoid playing games that trick your baby into eating
Your baby’s weight gain slows down over this period. Your six month old will gain around 100g per week, while your year old toddler gains as little as 60g a week. Remember not to look at only one week’s weight gain as your baby may gain more one week and much less or even nothing another week. You should not be weighing your baby more than once a month so watch for a trend on her growth chart. The only problem you should get concerned about is a weight loss or no gain over a month.