Weaning Foods are introduced to babies after exclusively breastfed for 6 months. According to WHO, water is also introduced after babies are 6 months old. Babies who are on formula milk are given formula milk mixed with an indicated amount of water on the formula milk packet.
Weaning is an important milestone which can be started on the basis of a baby’s appetite and development. As a matter of fact, if the baby achieves some of the milestones like starts sitting, eye-hand coordination, tongue movement is proper that means now your baby is ready to taste new foods.
Some babies are ready for solid foods early and some later on, so there is nothing to panic about. My son acquired head and neck coordination when he completed 8 months. As a new mom, I had no prior experience whether to start weaning or not as he was unable to digest the solids given to him. I went through a tough phase until he started walking. And did blunders by feeding him solids before 8 months as he used to poop a lot.
What is Weaning?
Weaning is the process of introducing solids and semi-solids gradually to your baby along with breast milk or formula milk. Weaning is also a gradual replacement of breast milk or formula milk with other solids such as mashed banana, stewed apple, dal ka paani.
Weaning is also known as an introduction of first foods which should be homemade.
The right time to start Weaning
- Baby starts sitting
- Baby can easily intake food with the help of a spoon
- Baby can easily chew
- Baby’s neck is stable
- Baby is still hungry after breastfeeding sessions
- Shows interest in food
Things to Remember While Weaning
- Start with apple puree or mashed banana
- Feed your baby while she sits on a rocker or feeding chair
- Never introduce 2 or 3 different solids initially
- Introduce 1 type of solid for 4-5 days and check for allergies and in case of allergies avoid that kind of food
- Start with a small portion
- Feed freshly cooked food to your baby and if somehow you can’t feed her the food immediately then prepare it again when he ready to take
- Baby’s food should be soft and freshly cooked
- Don’t force your baby to finish the whole bowl of solids at one go give her some time to get friendly with the new solid food
- Add salt, sugar, and ghee after your baby has completed 8 months of age
- Give citrus fruits after 9 months of age to avoid any kind of allergies
- Always start with 1 spoon on day 1 and gradually increase the quantity of solid food
- Introduce boiled eggs after completing 1 year of age
- Once you have introduced individual solids then start mixing 2-3 solids together like vegetable broken wheat, apple broken wheat with milk.
- Always introduce new kind of solid in breakfast and lunch as it is difficult for the baby to digest the solids during dinner time.
Symptoms of Food Allergies
If you find any of the following food allergies in your baby then stop feeding the food and rush to the doctor immediately.
- Loose motion
- Uncomfortable baby
My journey of Weaning
In India, there is a ritual called Annaprashana which is marked as the introduction of grain to the babies at the age of 6 months for the first time and the whole family rejoices.
As we know breast milk is now insufficient to fulfill the baby’s appetite so solids play a vital in baby’s development along with breast milk.
I introduced Chawal ka paani(Rice water) as the first food to the baby and gave 1 spoon on day 1 and gradually increased the quantity and followed this for 1 week.
Then introduced second food as Dal ka paani(Pulse water), monitored him whether he is liking the food or not the moment he rejected I stopped feeding that food.
Rest of the weaning foods are mentioned below:
1. Biscuit dissolved in milk
2. Mashed banana
3. Oats with breast milk or formula milk
4. Boiled rice with breast milk or formula milk
5. Broken wheat(daliya) with breast milk or formula milk
6. Vegetable Broken Wheat(daliya)
7. Vegetable soup(Tomato, cucumber)
11. Mashed boiled rice
12. Boiled Potato
13. Rice puffs(Murmura)
14. Apple/ pear/chikoo/carrot/ sweet potato/ pumpkin puree
15. Cerelac only until one year of age
When to Feed Which Weaning Foods
At 6th Month
- Rice water
- Mong dal water
- Wheat/Rice Cerelac
- Rice and Moong dal khichdi
- Mashed Boiled sweet potato/ potato
- Juice – Orange, apple, carrot
- Soups – Tomato, spinach, pumpkin, beetroot
At 7th Month
- Mashed pumpkin and potato
At 8th Month
- Broken wheat/ Daliya with or without breast milk/ Formula milk
- Oats with or without breast milk/ formula milk
At 9th Month
Introduce other foods like mango, papaya, watermelon, muskmelon etc.
At 10th Month
Milkshakes– banana, chikoo, mango, rose, thandai etc.
At 1 year of age
- Chicken soup
- Boiled eggs
- Boiled fish
- A mashed form of chicken
Hope this list of weaning food helps you through your journey of motherhood.
Drop your comments below for queries.