STEP-BY-STEP GUIDE TO BABY-LED WEANING

Your Baby & Toddler - - BABY FILES: BABY -

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.

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