STEP-BY-STEP GUIDE TO BABY-LED WEANING
How do we get started?
> Sit your baby upright, facing the table, either on your lap or in a highchair. Make sure she is steady and can use her hands and arms freely. > Offer rather than give your baby food – put it in front of her or let her take it from your hand, so that the decision is hers.
> Start with foods that are easy to pick up – thick sticks or long strips are best at first. Introduce new shapes and textures gradually, so that your baby can work out how to handle them.
> Include your baby in your mealtimes whenever you can. As far as possible – as long as it’s suitable – offer your baby the same food as you are eating, so that she can copy you. > Choose times when your baby is not tired or hungry, so she can concentrate. Mealtimes at this stage are for play and learning – she’ll still be getting all her nourishment from her milk feeds.
> Carry on offering breast or formula as before, as they are still your baby’s main source of nutrition until she’s a year old. When your baby needs less, she will reduce milk feeds herself.
> Offer your baby water with his meals, so he can drink if he needs to.
> Don’t hurry your baby or distract her while she’s handling food – allow her to concentrate and take her time.
> Don’t put food into your baby’s mouth for him or try to persuade him to eat more than he wants to.