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Feeding Your Baby

Many times parents are offered unsolicited advice about feeding their baby. Some of this advice may be accurate, however, some may be completely wrong and could potentially be harmful. Please remember to always consult your child’s physician before making any changes in your baby’s diet.

Sometimes parents are ready to introduce solid food into their infants diet before the infant is. It is important that parents know that their infant’s digestive system may not be mature enough to process solid foods with out any problems. If solid foods are offered too early, it can be a very painful experience for the infant and food allergies could develop.

The information below is a guideline to help parents to identify clues of growth in typically developing children that will indicate when their infant is ready for solid foods.

Child Age Your Baby Can Foods to Introduce
to 4 months
  1. Suck and swallow liquid
  2. Push tongue out to keep from swallowing foreign objects
  1. Breast Milk or Iron- Fortified Infant Formula
4 to 6 months
  1. Sit with support
  2. Hold head steadily
  3. Take food off spoon with mouth and swallow easily
  1. Baby Cereal
  2. Offer rice cereal first and oatmeal or barley later
  3. Always feed cereal from a spoon
  4. Continue to feed breast milk or iron-fortified formula
6 to 8 months
  1. Grab and hold on
  2. Sit without support
  3. Begin to chew
  1. Diluted fruit juices in a cup
  2. First, strained or pureed vegetables an fruits, without added sugar or salt
  3. Later, strained, cooked meat, chicken, fish, beans, cottage cheese, plain yogurt
  4. Continue to feed breast milk or iron-fortified formula
8 to 10 months
  1. Take a bite of food
  2. Feed self small pieces
  3. Use a cup with help
  1. Mixed baby cereal
  2. Cooked egg yolks
  3. Crackers
  4. Small pieces of cooked vegetables
  5. Cheese cubes
  6. Small, soft, peeled fruits
  7. Small pieces of cooked, ground meat, chicken or fish with bones and tough parts removed
  8. Continue to introduce new fruits and vegetables and feed breast milk or ironfortified formula
10 to 12 months
  1. Chew and swallow soft, mashed foods
  2. Use a cup
  3. Begin to use a spoon
  1. Small pieces of cooked or soft foods that the rest of the family eats, including cereals, breads, crackers, fruits, vegetables, cheese, cottage cheese, yogurt, cooked meat, cooked dried beans, cooked egg yolks
  2. Gradually decrease number of feedings from the breast or bottle as baby eats more
12 months
  1. Whole milk in a cup
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