Many new parents find it overwhelming to introduce their infants to solid foods, but it doesn’t have to be. Learn about some safe first foods to try now.
Becoming a parent is one of the most overwhelming situations in the world. There’s so much to learn and so many firsts to experience together, but making sure that they do those firsts safely can create even more worry and stress. It doesn’t have to be that way, though. Taking time to learn all the information that you can will help you and your baby get through all the wonderful firsts they’ll experience, including eating solid food for the first time.
Eating solid food for the first time offers a layered educational experience because infants who eat solid food sleep better. Learning what to feed your baby and how it affects their sleep is something else you’ll have to learn along the way. Keep reading to learn about some safe foods for infants to try.
Babies require a diet high in protein. While milk, be it breastmilk or formula, provides much of that protein, your baby can start getting protein from other sources at around 6 months old. This is because babies are beginning to learn how to chew at 6 months; however, since it’s a new skill, they aren’t experts yet. Allow your baby to chew protein safely by cooking it well and pureeing it. The protein you offer is up to you, although meat and beans are the most popular choices.
Cut Up Vegetables
Your baby will continue to learn how to chew from 6–9 months. At the 9-month mark, since they’ve had lots of practice, they’re ready for something more than pureed proteins and other early safe foods. Vegetables are a great choice since cooking them well will leave them soft, but you can also cut them into half-inch pieces that allow your baby to grip and chew on them more independently. At this stage, many parents choose to introduce green beans since they’re soft enough to chew but the right size to fit easily in their baby’s hand.
As your baby nears their first birthday, they’re quickly growing out of the infant stage. They’ve had another three months to learn more about chewing and feeding themselves, and they’re ready for a new, safe food challenge. Smaller versions of the food you and the rest of your family are eating are great choices. Mixed dishes allow your baby to explore texture and flavor, which can help prevent picky eating later. Just remember to keep everything small, shredding protein and cutting vegetables or fruits into half-inch pieces.
The entire first year of your baby’s life is their infancy, and during that first year, there are many exciting and overwhelming firsts, like eating solid food for the first time. These three safe foods for infants to try provide you with a roadmap of what is safe to offer your baby at different stages of development. However, if you have any questions or concerns, talk to your baby’s pediatrician.