Making a Smooth Transition to Solid Foods

Introducing semi-solid and solid foods to your infant can be a confusing and complex process. Typically, infants should start on solid foods at around 6 months, although it depends on the individual baby's developmental readiness. For help making your baby's transition to solid foods a smooth one, check out the following Do's and Don'ts:

Do Don't
Watch for signs your child is full (ex: shaking his/her head). Over feed your child.
Begin with single-ingredient foods. Use a bottle for feeding semi-solid foods.
Wait five days before starting new foods so food allergies or intolerances can be identified. Force your baby to finish bottles or food.
Make meal time a happy time. Leave your baby alone while he/she is eating.
Offer new foods when your baby is not too tired or hungry. Add salt or sugar to foods.

In addition to these Do's and Don'ts, your child should avoid the following foods during their first year to decrease other risks including:

  • Risk for allergic reaction- nuts and nut products, egg whites, and shellfish.
  • Choking risk- celery, grapes, raw carrots, corn, raisins, cherry tomatoes, nuts, olives, popcorn, peanut butter, sausage, hot dogs, and gum.
  • Serious health risks- honey, cow's milk, rare meat, cheese, unpasteurized juice, bean sprouts, and alfalfa sprouts.

By following these recommendations, your child will have a safe transition to solid foods and begin developing habits for a lifetime of healthy eating.