Medical professionals say that solids can be introduced to an infant around 4-6 months old, and the first foods introduced should be iron-rich. As a first time mom, I was nervous to introduce solid food. How would I know if she was ready? At 4 months? 5 or 6 months? So I reread the Canadian Paediatric Society guidelines (CPS) and talked to some of my mom friends about how they started introducing solids.
For the first 6 months of life, babies get all of the nutrients they need from breast milk or formula with the exception of vitamin D. Breastfed babies need vitamin D supplementation, as breast milk does not contain vitamin D.
Babies are ready to eat solids at around 4-6 months old.
The Canadian Paediatric Society recommends initiating solid foods only when your baby can:
– Sit up without support and control their neck muscles
– Hold food in their mouth without pushing it out on their tongue right away
– Show interest in food when others are eating.
– Open their mouth when they see food coming their way
– Can let you know they don’t want food by leaning back or turning their head away
All babies are different
Some babies may be ready to start eating solids earlier than others, even in twins.
Madi met the above requirements at 5 months. The CPS recommends starting with iron-rich foods as around 6 months babies’ iron stores start to deplete. Introducing iron rich foods after 6 months may increase your baby’s risk of iron deficiency or anemia. The first food I started Madi on was iron-fortified baby cereal, which is easy to find at most grocery stores. Other good options include: pureed meats, spinach (or other dark green leafy vegetables), beans, and peas. The CPS recommends when introducing foods that are common food allergens to wait two days before you introduce another. This will make it easier to identify the food that may have caused a reaction.