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Home / PARENT  / BABIES  / Time to tackle solids? A Month by Month guide to feeding your baby
infant feeding

Time to tackle solids? A Month by Month guide to feeding your baby

infant feeding

 

What to feed your baby can be quite overwhelming for any first-time mom. What’s right in terms of nutrients, health value, calories and swallowing capabilities are constant questions on your mind and conflicting theories don’t make it easy either!

 

But, transitioning from breastmilk to solids is a special time that shouldn’t be stressful for you. It should be filled with inquisitive first tastes, easy recipes, plenty of photo-worthy moments and a lot of mess!

 

So here is our infant feeding chart to help you plan better.

 

Birth to 4 months

  • Exclusive Breastfeeding (for as long as you can)
  • No water

 

4 months to 6 months

  • Continue breastfeeding
  • No salt in feeds
  • Start initially with Moong daal water, Plain water (water can be given but restricted to 40-50 ml)
  • Pureed vegetables: Pressure Cook /Blend/Smash/Strain – Carrots, Tomato, Spinach, Mixed Veg (Start with few spoonfuls then increase as per demand)
  • Pureed fruits: Orange, Sweet Lime, Apple. Make juice and then strain (Start with few spoonfuls then increase as per demand)

 

FEEDING TIPS

  • Maintain a food log
  • Always try one item per week to know acceptability. These items may be given two times in the day. viz. 10 am – 11am and 4 to 8 pm.
  • Continue to breastfeed in the remaining times
  • Time and quantity may change as per your child’s convenience

 

6 months to 8 months

  • Continue breast feeding
  • No Salt
  • Pureed or strained fruits (banana, pears, apple). Avoid bananas incase it causes constipation in your child.
  • Pureed or strained vegetables
  • Khichadi – start with moong daal as it is easily digestible. To prepare add 2 (parts) of rice plus 1 (part) of moong daal (wash and soak)- pressure cook (over cook)+ Ghee 1 tsp +a small piece of jaggery – blend to semisolid (smooth consistency). Add vegetables.
  • Iron-fortified cereal (oats, barley)
  • Some prefer keeping powdered dal and rice ready. Wash rice/dal wipe with a cloth,dry in sunlight.Powder to fine granular consistency. Store in an airtight container. This can be cooked directly in a vessel by adding required amount with water.

 

FEEDING TIPS

  • Maintain a food log
  • Always try one item per week to know acceptability
  • 1 teaspoon of fruit or vegetable, gradually increased to 2 or 3 tablespoons in four feedings
  • Continue to breastfeed in the remaining times
  • Time and quantity may change as per your child’s convenience

 

MEAL PLAN

Morning – Breast milk/Top Milk

10 – 11 am – Juice/Soup

12 – 1 pm – Khichadi/Pre-cooked cereal

Afternoon – Breast Milk/Top Milk

6  to 7 pm – Mashed fruits/Juice/Soup

Later – Breast Milk

 

8 months to 10 months  (check for signs of readiness for solid foods)

  • Continue breastfeeding
  • Salt may be added (small amount)
  • To khichadi introduce other forms of daal – tur, chana dal, green daals.Overcook and smash with spoon(no need to blend)
  • Fresh Yoghurt
  • Chappati soaked in hot milk, daals
  • Bread, Biscuit soaked in Milk
  • Upma with vegetables well cooked
  • Porridge-wheat (with Dahlia). Soak in hot water, add milk, pressure cook, add ghee + jaggery (Wheat may be substituted with Suji, Ragi. These can be prepared without a pressure cooker).
  • Nachini. Wash ragi, soak in water for 24 – 48 hours, dry in the sun for over 24 hours, dehusk – grind- Store in a dry glass container.
  • Thin Poha.Wash well, soak in little water, add milk, boil, cook, feed with /without jaggery and with/without ghee
  • Iron-fortified cereals (barley, wheat, oats, mixed cereals)

 

FEEDING TIPS

  • Introduce new foods one at a time. Wait two or three days, if possible, before offering another new food. (Wait three days if your baby or family has a history of allergies.) It’s also a good idea to write down the foods your baby samples. If he has an adverse reaction, a food log will make it easier to pinpoint the cause.

 

MENU PLAN

Morning – Breast milk/Top Milk

10 – 11am – Porridge/Bread/Biscuit/Chappati soaked in milk,juices,or idli/upma

12 – 1pm – Lunch – Khichadi/Chappati with Veg. or Dal/Curd – rice

4 – 5 pm – Fruit juice/Mashed Fruit

6 – 7 pm -any one item from the breakfast menu

8.30 – 9.30 -any one item from the lunch menu

Later -Breast milk/Top Milk

Make preparations more thicker. Add home diet with less spice and make thinner particle size.

 

10 months onwards

  • All of the above
  • Introduce softened foods, no hard particles – beans,channa, rajma (soft and smashed)
  • Add egg yolk ,chicken soups
  • Give all the house foods with less spices to help your child adjust to the home diet

 

When to start solids will depend on your baby. It is recommended to start around six months when your baby shows signs of readiness. If your infant is able to sit up unassisted and appears to have an interest in watching you eat, then this is a good time to make the leap to starting solids.

 

Here are couple of other things to keep in mind:

 

  • Continue breastfeeding till at least one year of age
  • Let your baby guide the way
  • Prepare for a couple of gags, a few coughs and lots of messy moments – make meal times pleasant by interacting with your child
  • Feeding Methods
    • Maintain a food log to know allergies,reactions and intake
    • Start one item per week
    • Start with 1 – 2tsp and increase gradually
    • Use a wati spoon for feeding(rounded edges)
    • Have separate bowls to be able to measure the intake
    • Choose a mealtime
    • No force feeding
    • No bottle feeding
    • No hard particles until your child turns one to avoid choking
  • Meals & Menus
    • Add extra oil/ghee as this increases calories without increasing the bulk
    • Re-heat cold food to destroy the germs
    • All babies have likes and dislike – reintroduce rejected foods after a few days
    • If you are giving your child buffalo milk – remember to dilute it , since it’s high on fat
    • No water until 6 months
    • No giving your child condensed milk,skimmed milk, goat’s milk and sheep’s milk
  • When your child can sit, always feed in sitting position
  • At 1 year, allow your child to start feeding on their own
  • Have enough baby wipes handy

 

Cherish this time. It goes so fast! Yes, starting solids means more washing and more mess but it really is a fun milestone. Enjoy each messy moment – soon your child will be old enough to sneak into the pantry to steal your hidden stash of chocolate when you’re not looking.

 

 

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