Baby led solids?

Vicki - posted on 01/28/2010 ( 10 moms have responded )

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Is anyone else doing baby led solids? I've mentioned it in a few threads but wondering if I'm the only one. For those that don't know baby led solids means you offer your child a variety of finger foods around 6 months and let them choose what to eat, whether to eat and when to stop. No purees, spooning, jars, ice cubes, etc. We're a month into it now and I'm becoming a bit of an evangelist. He enjoys his food, some days eats more, somedays less, but has a lot of fun (messy fun, but that's ok).

Anyways, just thought I'd start a thread if anyone wanted to discuss it. There's lots more info at www.baby-led.com about the whys and hows.

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Vicki - posted on 02/05/2010

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Just to update, I thought I'd give an idea of what my son eats in a day - he's now 7 months. I don't think food is filling him at all yet, it's still just playing and tasting - pretty much all his nutrition still comes from breastmilk. This is what he ate yesterday (plus breastfeeding of course):

Breakfast - I gave him a spoon loaded with porridge. Not baby porridge, just a spoon from my bowl. I put it in the freezer for a few minutes first so it was firmer. He took the porridge off the spoon and squished it between his fingers, I think he likes the squelching sound. He then sucked the spoon, played with the grains of porridge a bit more and had a sip from his sippy cup.

Lunch - Offered 2 each of leftover steamed carrot and zucchini sticks as well as a tinned asparagus spear, I was having asparagus in my sandwich. He ignored the zucchini (loved it the night before though, go figure), but munched down the carrot. He can bite chunks of carrot, chew and swallow, but sometimes the chunks fall out of his mouth. He mushed up the asparagus and may have eaten a little.

Dinner - Offered 2 roast carrot sticks, 1 roast stick of potato and 2 baby corns. Again ate a lot of the carrot and he loved the potato. The baby corns he bit the tip off but didn't really try eating them more than that.

Is anyone else doing baby led weaning, if so how is your baby going and what are they eating?

Fiona - posted on 01/31/2010

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I am also concerned with the whole choking/gagging thing. My son loves his food, and takes a mouthful of food off the spoon and mashes before swallowing, but when he is tired or not really in the mood he sucks off the spoon. He loves the netting thingy that was mentioned earlier, sitting here with a piece of rockmelon as we speak. He just wants too much to quick and shoves the whole lot in, and takes a huge bite out of it and it gets stuck in his throat. I have stuck my fingers down there twice now, and given him a few good taps on the back - but I guess it is all just trial and error, and very watchful eyes!

Monique - posted on 01/30/2010

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Yeah, my son snatches the spoon from my hand and chews on it. And he grabs it at the neck so he can't choke on it. Earlier I held the steamed broccoli to his mouth and he chewed on it but I didn't let go.

Vicki - posted on 01/30/2010

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According to the book on the subject there's more chance of choking when moving from purees to lumpier foods. The reason being that some babies will suck the puree off the spoon then swallow, much like we would with soup. When offered food with lumps in they will suck the same way, taking the lump to the back of the front without chewing - causing potential choking.

Not sure this applies to every baby though. I've watched my nephew being spoonfed puree and he seems to chew it.

Monique - posted on 01/29/2010

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That sounds fun and interesting!! I'd like to try it but I'm afraid my boy will choke! Lol such a sissy mama but better safe than sorry. Lol

Vicki - posted on 01/29/2010

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If you're still breastfeeding or feeding formula there's no need to worry about enough nutrients. There's more nutrients in breastmilk than most foods - certainly more than what is often given as first foods.

I'm avoiding things like whole nuts because of choking. It is normal for babies to gag on food while they're learning to chew it. This is different from choking. A gagging baby will cough, splutter, make noise, then spit out the offending piece of food, sometimes with vomit. Then recover straight away (and pick food out of the vomit to put back in their mouth before Mum can stop him... um gross). Choking baby is silent, cannot get air in to make any noise. Much more scary and not something I mess around with (I work with the Ambulance service when not on maternity leave). As long as they're sitting upright gagging is easy to deal with - it's something that's likely to happen whenever babies start self feeding anyway. My son has gagged about three times - twice on lettuce leaves. I stopped giving him lettuce as i think it tickles his throat.

Toni - posted on 01/29/2010

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I'm not too sure about that. I'm afraid of him choking on some things. My son's Dr actually suggested allowing him to try different foods as you suggested. She gave him one of those teething pacifiers to checkhis hand eye coordination. He actually did very well so I just recently purchased a little feeding thing that has a netting to hold foods so my son can feed hisself things like apples, bannana's, and steamed veggies without large chunks coming out. He seems to like it so far. I'm going to have to check out that site and see how and what type of stuff they suggest.

Tiffany - posted on 01/29/2010

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i give my son regular foods and i let him feed him self he especially loves toast. i like the idea of giving him food he can feed himself. i just worry with all the mess he makes that he isn't getting enough nutrients.

Vicki - posted on 01/28/2010

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I've mostly offered steam vegies - cut into shapes that are easy for him to handle. Carrot sticks, beans etc he can grab in his fist. He loves raw cucumber! He doesn't have any teeth yet but his gums are hard enough to bite into a steamed carrot. He has tried broccoli, capsicum, avocado, banana, various other fruits, snow peas, cherry tomatoes, probably a few more that I can't remember. It's interesting to see how he deals with the different foods - he'll put half a cherry tomato in his mouth, suck out the juice and seeds then spit out the outside bit. He'll attack a cucumber stick with skin on by gnawing the flesh off the skin. Obviously a lot of food gets on the floor and all over him but it's part of the learning process. More questions are welcome :)

Kim - posted on 01/28/2010

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I started with home made purées but am very interested it going this direction. What foods do you offer? Does your LO have teeth yet? I have many, many questions. Please enlighten me. Thanks!

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