Monday, February 27, 2012
There is much written and discussed about the best time to start solids for your baby. WHO says that babies should be exclusively breastfed until they are 6 months old. By 6 months, a baby's iron stores are supposedly completely depleted and need to be boosted with iron supplemented cereals. The Australasian Society of Clinical Immunology and Allergy (ASCIA) recommends between 4 and 6 months, depending on development and readiness. Our Pediatrician recommended 4 months, based on recent research into allergies. Our GP said solids should be fully established by 6 months so to start no later than 5 months, but earlier if Baby G shows interest.
With all of this conflicting information it's easy to get confused about what is right. We tend to parent a lot by instinct so followed our gut feeling and started her at 4 months. She had been chewing on everything in sight (other than her Sophie La Giraffe which she is supposed to chew) and I felt that I couldn't possibly keep up with her hunger (despite already supplementing her breastfeeds with a bottle of formula a day) and she was intently watching us eat and drink while we were out and about and at home. So the day after she turned 4 months old, We sat her down and gave her the first taste - rice cereal.
To me, it tastes like wallpaper paste. Honestly. To her, it was ambrosia. Smiles all around. Clearly a success. She gobbled it down and wanted more. Since then, we have tried apple, banana, mango, sweet potato, avocado and pumpkin. Apple she wasn't too keen on (I think it was the slightly gritty texture) and banana made her cry the first time she tried it but she subsequently has been happy to eat it. Mango and pumpkin are her favourites so far but she loves her rice cereal. She loves it so much she starts to squeal if I don't spoon it fast enough. Hilarious.
I think we can call this experiment a success so far. Next on the agenda - zucchini!