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The Ultimate Guide to weaning

Tuesday, 8 January 2019  | 

The Ultimate Guide to Weaning

This guide has been to put together by us and is made up of tips and advice from our customers and bloggers over the years, plus a few points from the NHS website. This is not by any means endorsed by the NHS or any other organisations therefore please always check with your health visitor before applying any of this advice. 

When to Wean 

Over the years the guidelines on when to wean have changed – but at time of writing January 19 the NHS recommend 6 months for weaning.  They give you these points to consider :- Do they ..
  • Chew their fists?    
  • Wake in the night when they used to sleep through?      
  • Want extra milk?

Our Mummy Bloggers can add to this advice with some really interesting and practical points!

Hannah has this to say ‘‘You’ll know when your baby is ready to progress onto more solidified foods just by watching her. Does she watch you when you’re eating? Is she sticking her tongue out when you eat? Does she watch your fork as it nears your mouth? (Lily would just stare and stare when I was eating. I felt terrible tucking into a 3 course meal!)’ and I first noticed her interest when we went to a burger bar and she was looking at me, begrudging me every mouthful. Her warm bottle of milk hardly seemed enticing.’ the signs were that she’d also taken to chewing on everything (thank heavens for dribble bibs!) and the 5am wake up calls. Which implied she was getting hungry earlier, hence needed more food to keep her satisfied. ‘

Emily makes some very practical and interesting points to consider before starting ‘ They should be able to sit unaided and hold their head confidently before you begin feeding them any form of solid food, this is key in preventing choking or any serious problems. It's also key for their comfort when sitting up to have meals.’ And ‘ They are 'high chair ready'. You'll notice your three month old certainly wont be able to sit properly in a highchair, even if they're propped up their head is unlikely to be above the tray. However as they grow you'll soon realise when your six month old begins to grow into their chair - this is a time when you should start to think about weaning.’

 

How to Wean 

The NHS reommends that 'First foods can include mashed or soft cooked fruit and veg, such as parsnip, potato ,sweet potato, carrot or pear - all must be cooked before eating. ' Other soft fruits such as peach, melon or baby rice cereal mixed with your usual baby milk is also ideal' 

Sarah one of our Mum's has some great advice  ... '

Sarah say’s

Their are lots of great ways to encourage your baby to eat on their own, giving them finger foods so they can feed themselves will really help them get interested in food. Make sure that your finger foods break up easily and are long enough so they can grip it. Try things like soft Banana or avocado to start with, do make sure that the food is soft and not to big so they don’t choke – don’t forget you must stay with your baby all the time in case of choking'

Jodie AKA Wigan Mum has some great ideas for food... 

  1. Make it look fun and appealing. I love to use food cutters in lots of fun shapes and then serve the food on bright plates. My favourites are the Oogaa divided plate and the Yumbox, I find that serving a variety of food in small portions gives my toddler a choice which means that she is more likely to eat it. If they don't eat much you can always pop it back in the fridge until later. My favourite food cutters are star shapes and the love heart Funbites cutter.
  2. Fruit Kebabs - Makes fruit or veg that little bit more appealing served in small portions on a colourful stick, bonus points if they are cut into fun shapes. Keep it simple with strawberry and melon or mix it up with pieces of cucumber, the more colourful the better.
  3. Make it into a muffin - this sometimes feels like my motto as if all else fails I bake it into a savory muffin. Our favourite is spinach and sweetcorn muffins which are a Ellas Kitchen recipe. I also like making banana and blueberry oaty muffins which are great for breakfasts (I just leave the sugar out of the recipe).
  4. Hide veg in mini quiches - crustless mini quiches are so quick and easy to make and you can basically put any combination of veg in and it will work, just chop the veg up small.
  5. Make it into a sauce - a lot of parents do this and there are a lot of recipes about for switching your original bolognese and red lasagna sauces for a homemade vegetable packed one. You can always batch cook it and freeze some too.
  6. Make it into a smoothie, I see a lot of these kids pouch smoothies in supermarkets now but even though they are marketed for kids I never really trust what is in them? I'm guessing some kind of sugar and additives, which is fine if they eat healthy foods to. If I'm trying to get my daughter to eat more pure fruit and veg but she is refusing it at home (many apples get chucked on the floor) then a smoothie could be the way to go. I love the Nom Nom reusable food pouches. These are perfect for out on the go and can be stored in the fridge or freezer.
  7. Make ice lollies - these is also a great one if your little one happens to be teething too. I use the Nuby lolly mold.

 

Don't forget to freeze unwanted food or for batch cooking and pureeing in - Jodie suggests you must try and make your food colourful and exciting and it is therefore much more likely to be eaten.  If you  go to #babyledweaning you will find lots more recipes and ideas and to help you through. 

 

As ever Mummy & Little Me are always looking for new bloggers and like to try and stay up to date - if you think you have anything you can add to this blog or want to write one of your own then please do email  Vicky at sales@mummyandlittleme.co.uk - we give away vouchers and lots more so why not give it a whirl!

 

 

 

 

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