How much food should my baby be eating?
Well, this is an interesting question but as every baby is different there is no standard answer, whatever their age, so if you are wondering if your baby is getting enough foods I might not be able to set your mind at rest here I’m afraid :-(. However, there are some basic pointers we can use to work out how much food your little one should be eating and I hope you find these useful.
- Between 4-6 months of age, most babies can be satisfied by milk alone without the need for solid foods until 6 months.
- However, there are others who seem to need some solid foods before 6 months as milk alone doesn’t seem to satisfy them. Remember that even in these cases milk still provides most of the nourishment baby needs and usually only a few teaspoonfuls of food are needed at any mealtime. Of course, you can increase the amount of food gradually as baby gets used to it and seems to want more, but make sure they keep their milk intake at more-or-less the same level (babies at 4-5 months usually need about 900ml milk per day).
- From 6 months of age, the situation is a bit different. All babies will need to include a variety of different foods in their diets, including foods with a higher energy density than milk, to make sure their nutritional requirements are being met. As the amount of food given increases, at one then two and then three mealtimes, you will find that baby needs less milk to satisfy him/her. Once baby is on 3 reasonable meals a day, the volume of milk needed falls to about 600ml per day and you can usually cut out a milk feed or two. Offer other drinks instead e.g. water or diluted fruit juice, to ensure baby gets enough fluids.
- For quantities of foods, the best advice I can give is to be guided by your baby’s appetite. Don’t worry about giving your baby too much food – they will normally turn their heads and refuse to open their mouths when they are full.
- At the end of the day, as long as your baby is well and wetting and soiling his nappies regularly and is putting on weight steadily, it is likely that you are doing everything you need to do.
Does this help? Let me know.
Tags: babies, baby, drinks, eating, food, healthy, Helen, Hipp Organic, milk, nutrition, weaning
Categories: Baby development, Milk feeding, Weaning
How can I get my baby to switch from smooth foods to lumpy Stage 2 foods?
I've just had an email from a mum asking for some advice with helping her baby switch from smooth foods to lumps so I thought I'd share my advice with you all.
Learning to chew is an important stage in your baby's development and although it can take a while for your baby to control lumps in their mouth, it is important to persevere with lumpier foods at around 7 months. Learning to chew helps in the correct muscle development and use of the tongue needed for speech, and of course is also a vital step in them adapting to family-style meals. Sometimes if the lumps haven’t been chewed well enough your baby may cough up the lumps for more chewing and you may think your baby is choking, but this is quite normal. Of course, there is always the possibility of choking, however, so never leave your baby on their own whilst they are eating. If your baby does choke then calmly lift him and turn him upside down. Try to do it gently and without panicking so that you don't frighten your baby.
Try introducing soft lumps at first by mashing soft ripe fruit, cooked vegetables, pasta and cooked fish. You could try mixing a Stage 1 food with some Stage 2 food in the same bowl (choosing similar or complementary varieties), gradually increasing the amount of the lumpier food as your baby gets used to chewing. Alternatively, you could try mashing the Stage 2 food with a fork slightly before you feed it to your baby so that it has a mashed rather than lumpy consistency, and then gradually mash it less and less. Some babies can find lumpy foods in a bowl difficult but have no problems if finger foods are offered to them alongside a smoother meal in a bowl. Try introducing a selection of accompanying finger foods such as pieces of cooked meat (e.g. chicken or ham), grated cheese, cooked pasta shapes, pieces of hard-boiled egg or dried fruits, to encourage chewing.
If your baby still will not take to lumps, try leaving it for a few days and then try again. They will get there in the end!
Let us know about your experiences of introducing lumpy foods or if you’ve got any tips for other mums to try.
Bye for now,
Tags: baby, eating, food, Helen, Hipp Organic, lumps, stage 1, stage 2, weaning
Categories: About Hipp Organic, Baby development, Weaning