When to Introduce Solid Foods to Infants?

Know when to introduce solid foods to infants is essential so that you can ensure the correct growth and development of the child.

When to Introduce Solid Foods to Infants

During the first year of life, a child grows more rapidly than in any other stage of life.

This rapid growth means that the baby needs energy and nutrients sufficient to ensure that the growth occurs in the best way, so it becomes crucial to know when to introduce solid foods to infants.

WHEN TO INTRODUCE SOLID FOODS TO INFANTS: THE IMPORTANCE

Initially, babies only need breast milk or a milk formula adequate, but as they get older, they need other sources of nutrition to help in the growth and development.

WHY IS IT NECESSARY?

Introduce solid foods in infants is necessary to ensure that they get all the nutrients they need from the food they consume.

Chew and chewing also help to develop the muscles required for the correct development of the discourse.

At around 6 months of age, the child’s reservations of some nutrients, as is the case of the iron, begin to deplete.

Thus, it is important that, when the milk of the cow is introduced to the child as a drink “main”, is the child to consume a variety of foods that meet their nutritional needs.

The introduction of solid foods is a gradual process – it should be noted that when the baby reaches one year of age, they should be able to eat the family meals crushed or cut.

WHEN TO INTRODUCE SOLID FOODS TO INFANTS: RECOMMENDATIONS

The World Health Organization advocates exclusive breastfeeding until 6 months of age as a form of food preferred.

According to the current recommendations on child development, the 6 months are considered the best time to introduce solid foods to infants.

At around 6 months, the digestive tract and the intestines of the baby are more mature and the risk of develop allergies and intolerance to solid foods is less.

In addition, the development of the mouth and of the tongue allows the food to be swallowed instead of cuspidos. Thus, it is advised to wait until this age to begin to offer the first solid food.

Until then, all the nutritional needs of the baby are met through breast milk or is not breastfeeding, for milk formula in the amount indicated by the pediatrician.

THE FIRST SOLID FOOD

The food ideal to introduce to baby food for texture and flavor pleasant, easy digestion and preparation easy.

Among the favorites of the baby are mashed banana, pear, avocado, pumpkin, sweet potato, compote of apple and rice.

A GRADUAL PROCESS

The ideal method to test the palate of the baby is to start by offering a small amount, gradually increasing the amount.

Given that the stomach of the baby at this stage is still small, it works better to offer a small amount of food, distributed over several meals a day.

It is important to take into account that this is a gradual process and requires both time and patience.

The meals are going to be more time-consuming in comparison with the height in that they were constituted by milk, since babies need time to chew, taste and swallow the food.

THE VARIATION OF TEXTURES

Being a gradual process, it is natural that there is a progression of textures to be consumed by the baby over time. The first porridge should be creamy and consistent and have evolved to porridge with more texture, with lumps, and only partially undone.

It is important to have this variation so that the baby becoming accustomed to new ways of eating the food and get the taste for solid food.

MILK AS MAIN FOOD

Despite the fact that the baby can count on new foods to meet their nutritional needs and energy, the milk continues to have a predominant role in your diet.

In the beginning, many meals are still of the milk and this is important so that the digestive system adapts to the new food.

The introduction is hasty of solid foods can lead to abdominal discomfort and constipation.

It is equally important to offer water with meals to help with hydration and digestion of food.

HEALTHY EATING

The best time to introduce solid foods to infants is also a crucial time to begin to educate the taste of the baby for a healthy diet.

Thus, ideally the food of the baby should be made at home with fresh food to allow the baby to experiment with tastes and textures varied.

Having said that, in addition to the 6 months being the best time to introduce solid foods to infants, are also the best time for them to “present” the vegetables and fruit.

For example, the vegetable soup is undoubtedly a food-and nutrient-rich and easily digestible.

MEALS OUTSIDE THE HOME

Even when the power of the baby has to be done outside of the home, the ideal is to prepare meals at home and acondicioná them as well, so that they can be carried and subsequently offered to the baby.

However, there are several options available in the market that are appropriate to this stage of life that can be used in situations of sporadic in that the preparation home is not possible – they must, however, be the exception and not the rule.

FOODS TO AVOID

In the first years of life, the taste of the baby is in training. In this way, processed foods, rich in sugar, fat and salt, “fast-food” and juices industrial should be avoided.

Should still be avoided by the consumption of honey until 12 months of age.

FINAL NOTE

The recommendations and tips mentioned in this article are general recommendations, however, it is noted that there are other approaches such as Baby-Led Weaning in relation to the introduction of solid foods to infants.

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