How to start weaning

By Ashley | January 7, 2010
How To Start Weaning?

Weaning is a process of introducing external food to babies, thereby reducing their dependence on mother’s milk. Weaning may start as early as three months, or somewhere between four to six months. The length of the weaning period depends on various factors like a mother’s need to go to work and the baby’s intolerance to external food.

Tips to Start Weaning

Weaning is an essential process, but there are several points that must be kept in mind before you start weaning your baby. The specifics of effective and safe weaning are:

  • You are recommended to start the weaning process for your baby once the baby is at least four months old.
  • When babies are fed entirely on breast milk or mothers’ milk, they get accustomed to the bland taste of milk. Therefore, when you start weaning, you must begin with bland baby food.
  • Once the infant gets used to baby food, you can introduce fruit juices and semi solid food into the diet.
  • When you introduce new food into a baby’s diet, you are recommended to do it slowly and be observant. You should introduce just one new item every week, and once the baby accepts the food, you can add another new item.
  • Important Points to Remember While Weaning

  • Some points of caution to follow when weaning are listed below:
  • You are recommended to never pressurize your baby to eat a particular type of food that he/she is unwilling to consume. However, if the baby likes a particular item, you may continue giving the same food for a couple of days, and then introduce a new food item.
  • You should ensure that the food you give the baby while weaning is smooth in texture, with no lumps in it that may make it difficult to swallow.
  • When you start feeding your baby solid food, you should do so just once a day, and gradually increase its frequency.
  • You should not feed eggs and other non vegetarian food to the baby soon after you begin weaning. You may start the egg intake when the baby is seven to eight months old.

Weaning is an important process as it introduces a baby to solid food and reduces the dependence on breast milk. However, you must prepare yourself for tantrums associated with the process. Your baby could refuse to eat external food or the body may be unable to tolerate different food.

You must consult your pediatrician for additional tips on weaning.

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