How can I change my baby to whole millk?

Courtney - posted on 07/16/2012 ( 214 moms have responded )

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My son is 8 months old and he is very healthy he weighs 26 lbs. he is a chunky baby. I only get 7 cans of formula for him a month on wic. I have to buy 6 more cans for him, And formula is not cheap. I was wondering if it would be ok for me to start giving him whole milk? and if so do I need to give him half milk half formula or do I need to give him whole milk not mixed with formula?? Thanks.

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Rebecca - posted on 07/16/2012

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I am surprised no one has mentioned it, but as a mother of 6 sons I have to comment that 26 lbs at 8 months is a very heavy baby. It might be that you are feeding him too much. Every time he fusses it doesnt mean he is hungry, but most babies will eat if you put a bottle in his mouth. He may just need to suck, so see if he will be soothed with a pacifier, rather than more formula. Have you started him on any solid food, such as rice cereal or oatmeal? I also believe cows milk should not be given before a year, as there are a lot of additives and allergy triggers in dairy that a young baby has no resistance to yet. I think WIC pays for 7 cans a month as that is what the average baby consumes. You are giving your double that amount and most babies weigh 26 lbs at a year. You may try other ways of comforting or entertaining your baby and find that he doesn't need to eat as much as he's getting now.

Jodi - posted on 07/17/2012

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Giving a child milk instead of formula at this age is not ONLY depriving them of essential nutrients, but, did you know that the proteins in milk can deplete the system of much needed iron? Yes, it actually DEPLETES nutrients. This is a big reason why it is strongly recommended you wait until they are 12 months to replace formula with whole milk (because generally by 12 months, they are eating enough solids to be consuming enough nutrients to replace the formula. Their stomachs are also not yet mature enough to break down cows milk proteins efficiently. Please don't feed your baby milk yet, he is way too young. For the sake of his future digestive health, and his brain development, please find ways to cut back on other things to purchase the additional formula.



To those saying, well I did it and my kids are fine......my mother also carried me in her lap home from the hospital because that was what was done in the day. Doesn't make it a good idea or in any way safe, and it doesn't make it right.

Jodi - posted on 08/15/2012

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Diluting cows milk with water is (1) diluting the nutrients and (2) could result in water intoxication. Not to mention the fact that cows milk doesn't have sufficient nutrients in it anyway. I am amazed at how many people don't understand the important of these nutrients to the brain development of their children, and are totally unaware that they may actually be minimising the potential of their baby for the future.



Sure, I know, your baby is just fine. I hear that one all the time. But how do you KNOW that the C average they end up getting for their final year of high school couldn't have potentially been a B average, or even an A average but for the fact that they missed out on some nutrients when they were infants. The fact is, you don't. Nutrition is IMPORTANT in the early years of life or you can miss out on connection of those neurons and then it is too late.



Malnutrition is very real. Malnutrition is not just what you see in part of Africa. Malnutrition is not just about being hungry and not having food. Malnutrition is about having the right food for development, and without tests, you often would not even know if your child had it.



As a parent, I don't understand why you would risk it. In my book, it is as bad as drinking and smoking while pregnant and can have as much a damaging effect on your baby.

Jodi - posted on 07/17/2012

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" I say ask how grandparents or great grandparents did things if you need advice."



So all the research they have done over the years means nothing?



What do you think wet nurses were for? That's right, they breastfed the baby for the mother who couldn't. For the poor people, their baby either died (that's one reason for higher infant mortality rates) or suffered malnutrition (because milk does NOT contain the necessary nutrients) if their mother couldn't breastfeed them. Do you want me to go into the effects of malnutrition on cognitive development in a child?



Do you really think that the things our grandparents did were ideal? Just because they DID them, doesn't mean it is the right thing to do. THEY didn't have a lot of choices. How many adults do you know now who have digestive issues?



We now have choices, which our grandparents DIDN'T have, choices that make sense. And for the sake of a little money (probably the cost of an internet connection at that), we have here a woman prepared to risk putting her child's health in jeopardy because of stupid comments like the above.

Kimberly - posted on 07/16/2012

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Be sure to talk to your doctor for advice. When I worked as a medical assistant, mothers would sometimes be too embarrassed to tell the doctor about financial problems and tell me instead. I was more than happy to relay this to the doctor prior to him seeing the patient and he would authorize me to give whatever the mother needed for the baby in formula samples or medications from our sample closet. I could then gather the needed supplies while he saw the baby. Fortunately, the doctor I worked for knew what it was like to be in need and enjoyed helping out. He would even tell pharmaceutical reps about special needs for his patients and they would bring in extra formula or medications. Most doctor's offices are quite helpful in this area and if they can't get the items needed, will call other offices or know resources in the community to help. If your doctor believes your baby needs more formula than the average baby, he or she should be able to write a short letter to WIC to let them know your child needs additional nutrition until able to transition to cow's milk. You may have to look towards and emergency infant service, Catholic Charities, Salvation Army, etc. for help. While this may be uncomfortable, it is for your baby and he counts on you to meet his needs. I would never ask for help for myself, but am ok with doing these things for my children.

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214 Comments

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Rosina - posted on 08/18/2012

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Hello Courtney:

I can tell you this that I was blessed to be able to have my ob/gyn's assitant ask me if I was breastfeed or formula, and if formula what kind because little did I know my doctor's office had the kind of formula that I was using on my child. I used to breastfeed, but it was only for 2 months and after that it was Similac Formula (that which is supposed to be closer to breastmilk), anyway that being said check with your ob/gyn's office to see by chance if they also have samples to give away. I was able to get samples of the ready to feed formula on two different occasions, 1) where the doctor's medical assistant asked me and was not even about being on WIC, unemployed, underemployed or anything, 2) and the other occasion where I decided to inquire about possibly getting more samples. It was a blessing I did not get a little, I happen to get more than I even imagined. Trust me, I was and am not on WIC, but unemployed at the times and it did help. I hope this helps and for anybody else that reading this reply too.

Courtney - posted on 08/18/2012

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UPDATE: First I would like to say thank you for all of the replies (and sorry for causing a big dispute). My son is now 9 months old and he is very healthy he weighs 28 lbs and his is 30.5 inches long. I have put him on whole milk since august 1st. and I do have to put karo syrup in itbut He is doing great with it. His doc know that he is on whole milk and she says that its fine. He is getting all of the nutrients he needs from the milk and table food. The doc also told me he doesn't need to drink more than 24oz of milk in 24 hours. Thank you so much for your advice.

Kristin - posted on 08/18/2012

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Your son definitely needs to stay on formula. WIC doesn't provide all the necessary formula because they want to encourage women to breastfeed which is free and healthiest for babies. It would be a good idea to ask your pediatrician these questions so he could explain exactly how whole milk could harm your baby.

Georgia - posted on 08/18/2012

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talk to your doc. Rule odd thumbis 12 months, but every child is different...my 4 kids have all had milk b before a year and are all FINE. Good luck to you.

Jodi - posted on 08/18/2012

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@ Kerrie, could you please provide that link to where the World Health Organisation recommends milk at 9 months, because I absolutely beg to differ and I'm calling you on your research because I can't find it.

Staci - posted on 08/17/2012

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I don't think babies are supposed to change over to whole milk until age 1 or unless your Dr. Ok's it. Whole milk is pasterized or unpasterized but there is all kinds of unsafe bacteria in milk that is not good for babies. Their immune system may not be mature to properly digest it causing stomach problems and digestive issues. Be safe. Ask your pediatrician first. :-)

Gabriela - posted on 08/17/2012

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I have three kids and all if them were switched to whole milk before they were one. My niece did not tolerate the change until a couple of months after turning one. Every child is different.

Elizabeth - posted on 08/17/2012

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REBEECCA GORDEN YOU DONT KNOW WHA TYOU ARE TALKING ABOUT. i HAD A BABY HE IS ABOUT 6 MONTHS AT 24 LBS HE WAS BORN AT 10 THAT DOESNT MEAN i AM NOT DOING MY JOB AS A MOTHER. i DEFINETLY AM NOT OVER FEEDING HIM HE IS SOME SOLIDS AND BREASTFEEDS. nOT ALL BABIES ARE GOING TO BE 26 AT A YEARS. THAT IS WHAT IS WRONG WITH SOCIETY PEOPLE THINK EVERYONE NEEDS TO BE THE SAME OR IF YOUR BABY IS CHUNKY HE IS TOO FAT. iF THEY DONT THROW UP AFTER EATTING THEY ARE NOT BEING OVER FEED, THEREFORE GET YOU FACT STRAIGHT. i WOULD ADVISE YOU COURTNEY TO TALK TO YOU DOCTOR THAT IS ALWAYS YOUR BEST BET!

Kerrie - posted on 08/17/2012

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9mths is when to start according to world heath org. Homoginized or 3% is best because it has more fat which is good for babies developing brains.reg cup sippy cup bottle or spoon feed. Formula no longer will provide enough nutrients after 9 mths. All the best.

Diana - posted on 08/17/2012

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At 8 mos. old you should be able to give him more solid foods to help cut down on some of the formula. He can start getting more of his nutrition from solid foods & use the formula as a beverage.

They say it is best to start on rice cereal and avoid anything made with wheat. With all the people that you hear having Celiac disease, you almost have to wonder if some of the sensitivity to wheat is from us being introduced to it so early in life. You could also try veggies like green beans, peas, squash or carrots and then a little fruit. You can mash your own veggies or use baby food. Sometimes mashing your own can be a little cheaper.

"Foods to avoid until your infant is at least a year old include cow's milk, citrus fruits and juices, and wheat and egg whites until he is two. Also, avoid giving peanuts (as smooth peanut butter), fish and shellfish until your child is at least three years old. Whole peanuts and tree nuts should be avoided until your child is four because of the choke hazard.

When you do introduce new foods, do so slowly and only give one new food every four to five days. This way, if your child does have a reaction or allergy, then you will know which food caused it and you will be able to avoid giving it again."

Up until my older daughter (we learned that my daughter was allergic to eggs from the time she was 10 mos. old) I probably wouldn't have thought twice about introducing a little whole milk. Now I realize that some of what "They" say about not introducing certain foods is based on solid facts. Some high-allergy foods are nuts, fish, egg whites, honey, and milk. The longer you can put off giving them those sort of things or introducing them slowly to help monitor a reaction the better. Usually people need to be exposed to something in order to develop an allergy to it. Luckily, she only had 2 new things when she was having a reaction (hives & vomiting) so we were able to narrow it down to either egg whites or strawberries. It turned out to be the eggs doing it. The thing about food allergies is that while your baby may have a mild reaction the first time, each subsequent reaction can be worse. We ended up having to carry an epi-pen around with us for her first 3 years. The good thing about food allergies like milk & eggs is that as long as you can prevent your child from having these items (including as an ingredient) is that they will often grow out of it within a few years. Peanuts & shellfish are the exception. My younger daughter is allergic to shellfish. She is 10 yrs old now and no longer tests positive for the shellfish, but we learned that she stands the chance of re-developing the allergy. Peanuts can work the same way.

I found a website for you that has some suggestions on what to feed him & at what ages to start. http://www.diethealthclub.com/baby-diet...., http://www.keepkidshealthy.com/infant/st..., and http://www.keepkidshealthy.com/toddler/f... (This one is for toddlers, but there may be some suggestions there that you could use.)

I hope this helps!

Ashley - posted on 08/17/2012

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Well normally infants are not introduced to whole milk until they are 1. Why not give him more water or even 100% fruit juice to replace the use of the formula. I do not suggest mixing the formula or taking him off of it this early.

[deleted account]

Hi there Courtney, by the way I love your name lol (my daughters' name is the same but spelt Kortni). I started my oldest daughter on cows milk at 6 months (I diluted it with water though and gradually built it up to fully cows milk) and my youngest started at 8 months, same deal. Both of my girls were eating a good amount of solids at the time though so I think as long as you are feeding your baby healthy nutritious food as well as cows milk, my opinion is that it's fine.

Kathy - posted on 08/14/2012

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Feed him less formula and more solid foods. If he is drinking that much formula he needs to be eating more solid foods because if you do switch him to milk he may develop enemia if he isn't eating enough table food. Try mixing a little baby rice cereal in with his formula, it will slow the rate at which he is eating, provide bulk and make him more satisfied. Offer him food from your plate or make him a small plate of his own, just be careful if eating something that he could get choked on like hot dogs. If you do decide to give him milk mix your formula as usual and add milk to the mixed formula. I would start out slow like maybe an ounce in one or two feedings a day and keep adding to one more feeding a day until all of them have it in it, then increase to two ounces and repeat the same process until he is completely on whole milk. I did that with my babies starting at one year to get them used to whole milk and it worked great.

Kathy - posted on 08/14/2012

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Feed him less formula and more solid foods. If he is drinking that much formula he needs to be eating more solid foods because if you do switch him to milk he may develop enemia if he isn't eating enough table food. Try mixing a little baby rice cereal in with his formula, it will slow the rate at which he is eating, provide bulk and make him more satisfied. Offer him food from your plate or make him a small plate of his own, just be careful if eating something that he could get choked on like hot dogs. If you do decide to give him milk mix your formula as usual and add milk to the mixed formula. I would start out slow like maybe an ounce in one or two feedings a day and keep adding to one more feeding a day until all of them have it in it, then increase to two ounces and repeat the same process until he is completely on whole milk. I did that with my babies starting at one year to get them used to whole milk and it worked great.

Carolyn - posted on 08/13/2012

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Do not give him whole milk until he is 12 months, or directed to do so by a doctor. I would check and see if you can get some formula from some of the local food pantries in the area, as they sometimes stock items for infants. If they don't, they maybe able to tell you who can help you in your city. If all else fails, then you may have to cut the milk with more water to help, but that's a last resort. My doctor had me do that with my baby, but only because he was overweight, and that helped with reducing calories. Your pediatrician may also be able to assist you with where to go for extra formula as well or suggest to you a cheaper kind to use when you're running out.

Tiffany - posted on 08/13/2012

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Ask your dr first bc he put my kids on 1% because it was healthier for them.

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I would give him half and half at first. I think he is old enough for you to make the switch. I know a great nutritional drink you can put in the milk to make sure he is getting the right nutrients.
J

Dove - posted on 08/13/2012

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Thank you Jodi. I thought it was pretty clear since I put the other poster's NAME in my comment, but apparently not. ;)

Angele - posted on 08/13/2012

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It is so wrong to be feeding your 4 month old anything but bm or formula. This Kristy baker sounds illiterate, just by the way she speaks and her actions.

Jodi - posted on 08/13/2012

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"Dove it's funny because you have not read the post properly. Her son is not 4 months old, he is 8 months."



Dove was addressing Kirsty Baker, who said she is giving her 4 month old cows milk. Not so funny.



"mine 4 month old and he on whole milk with out formula and he fine on it it it up to u how you feel"

Leah - posted on 08/13/2012

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I agree that if its for drinking then wait til 12 months. You can put cows milk in food from 6months though.
Check with your doctor and see what they say

I also agree with what someone else put about being quite heavy for his age, my boy is 2.7 and weights not much more than that.

Kendra - posted on 08/12/2012

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Goats milkb is great but a quart is about $3.50 vs a gallon of cows milk for about the same and I shop at walmart my son can not drink cows milk but does drink goats at daycare only because of the price

Fran - posted on 08/12/2012

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The baby I babysit use to vomit after every feed on formula, so mom switched to Soy milk...she then puked more and was miserable..so mom went to homo milk and no more puking...she was about 10months...we think she's allergic to soy..and some formulas contain soy...

Start dropping bottles (especially night time feeds) add solids and that should cutdown on the amount of formula needed to buy.

Good luck to you!

April - posted on 08/11/2012

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goats milk is about the same price as cow milk and you can start your 8 mo old on that. it is close to human milk. however, i would suggest adding vitamins to it. DHA, Vit D and Vit C.
cows milk is really unnecessary. 80% of people have some sort of allergy to it even though most dont know it. i started my daughter on raw goats milk at 7 months bc i couldnt breastfeed anymore and formula scared me with all the chemicals and she did great.

Dove - posted on 08/11/2012

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Michelle, you didn't read MY post properly... I wasn't referring to the op, but a poster (who I named IN my post) about half a page up from my comment.



If you are going to attempt to insult my intelligence you might want to make sure you're doing it correctly.

Michelle - posted on 08/11/2012

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Dove it's funny because you have not read the post properly. Her son is not 4 months old, he is 8 months.

Ferris - posted on 08/11/2012

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Humans really don't need cows milk, period. Many cultures don't drink cows milk at all. My oldest 2 kids don't. Continue with the formula. Feed him solids. My 9 month old is big like your baby. He eats 3 meals a day (veggies, chic, oatmeal). He nurses once or twice at night. He takes about 3 or 4, 6 oz. bottles of formula a day.

Dove - posted on 08/11/2012

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Seriously, I'm concerned about the well being of an infant and someone things that is funny?! Okie dokie then....

Michelle - posted on 08/11/2012

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You can start introducing things such as cereals and some pureed fruits (like bananas, but do this at home the ready made ones have too much junk in them) if you want to start introducing milk dont start half and half start with even less cows milk and more formula and leave it like that for a week and then next week increase the cows milk and reduce the formula. I did this with breastmilk for my daughter, she was on solids during the day at 8 months because I had started her on solids at 6 months, I also started introducing cows milk at around 8 months usually in her cereals and when I was at work my partner would look after her and because I was unable to express much milk at that point he would top it up with cows milk. She is now a healthy and energetic little girl.

Samantha - posted on 08/11/2012

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Check out your local milk bank or Human Milk for Human Babies chapter and get some donated breastmilk...it's better than cows milk or formula.

Dove - posted on 08/11/2012

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Kirsty Baker, If your 4 MONTH OLD baby is only on whole milk he is at great risk for malnutrition even if he 'seems' to be growing fine. Cow's milk does not have all that he needs at this age.. not even close. :(

Bekah - posted on 08/11/2012

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You shouldn't start milk until a year old. Try increasing cereal or other foods. People aren't meant to digest cows milk and your babies sensitive digestive track doesn't have the flora or the enzymes needed.

Amandalyn - posted on 08/11/2012

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Your son needs formula until he is a year old and then he can have whole milk. The milk does not have the things he needs and the milk can cause him many dietary problems at this point. I wish you luck! If he is on WIC then all of his formula should be covered. If it is not, then you need to revisit his doctor. :) Good luck!!

Hiedi - posted on 08/11/2012

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Toddlers need the fat that is in whole milk for development purposes up to the age of 2-3yrs.... Again I would recommend checking with your pediatrician before changing your infants diet. Let them know your struggles im sure they will have help to offer.

Kendra - posted on 08/11/2012

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First does he eat table food? And to start I would mix 1/4 milk 3/4 formula and slowly adjust it to half and half also have you looked into the walmart brand formula it about half price but the exact same thing as name brand. Hope this helps

Kendra

Jerri Lea - posted on 08/11/2012

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I nursed all three of my children, however as a baby I was allergic to cows milk and formula so my mom had to put me on goats milk....very expensive. So I started giving my kids skim cows milk in conjunction with breathing milk at 7-8 months ...slowly to hopefully keep them from being allergic.I started with 2 oz of skim milk first thing in the morning, then the next week, 4 oz, then with in a few weeks...8 oz twice a day till they were closer to 12 months then skim milk all the way. Skim has all the same vitamins as whole just less fat.

Hiedi - posted on 08/11/2012

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I would talk to your pediatrician my kids pediatrician was very insistent on not switching until they were at least 11 months old. Its a digestive issue. Their systems are not able to digest cows milk until they are older.

Kirsty - posted on 08/11/2012

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mine 4 month old and he on whole milk with out formula and he fine on it it it up to u how you feel

Cassondra - posted on 08/11/2012

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babies cannot digest cows milk like adults can and it can actually upset their stomach. I understand formula is expensive and it's been said that Goats milk is actually more similar to human milk than cows. BUT as always you should talk to your pediatrician first.

Shawnna - posted on 08/11/2012

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My kids started whole milk at 9 months after doctor okayed. They were given pretty much every fruit, veggie, and protein type baby foos before then though. Check with your pediatrician first. There are people who go to each and every extreme out there but ultimately you have to do what is best for you and your baby. Every family is different, but I would stick with what your pediatrician approves..

Shawnna - posted on 08/11/2012

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My kids started whole milk at 9 months after doctor okayed. They were given pretty much every fruit, veggie, and protein type baby foos before then though. Check with your pediatrician first. There are people who go to each and every extreme out there but ultimately you have to do what is best for you and your baby. Every family is different, but I would stick with what your pediatrician approves..

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