am i allowed to feed my 4 month old baby food?

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Kate CP - posted on 12/17/2009

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Quoting Julie:

4 months is fine. Rice cereal first, then go on to the other cereals. Then veggies, fruit, meats...in that order. I've been told that babies that have fruit before veggies tend to favour the fruit because of the sweetness and then don't want the veggies as much. Like a couple of others moms have said, try each food for 3 days so you know if they have any allergic reaction. Once you do that you can keep adding more and more!


This is a myth. Breast milk is sweet so children prefer the sweet fruits. It doesn't matter if you feed veggies first or not.

User - posted on 12/16/2009

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American Acadamy of Pediatrics recomends your baby be at least six months old or older before giving them baby food.

Rebecca - posted on 12/16/2009

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Quoting Kandice:

TO THE BREASTFEEDING COMMUNITY:
*Baby food is not meant to replace bottle feeding (formula or breast). It is meant to introduce children to foods that they will be eating the rest of their lives. As babies grow, their need for nutrients increases. Many women today do not receive the same nutrients that women in the past have gotten. Foods, fruits and veggies especially, can supplement those. Add a 1-2 oz food (even table food) to a feeding 2-3 times a day IN ADDITION to breasmilk to avoid nutritional deficiencies later in life. Otherwise, PLEASE make sure you are taking a breastfeeding supplemental vitamin or giving a liquid multi to your children.


This part of your post is full of contradictions and false information.  Women today have better access to a wider range of nutritious foods, year round, than ever before in the history of the world.  Unfortunately, it's true that many women (along with most other members of our Western society) eat terrible diets, but a breastfeeding mom's own health will suffer before her baby's does because her body prioritizes by removing nutrients from the bloodstream and putting them into breastmilk FIRST, then going to the mother's needs SECOND. 



And I want to see a source for your claim that giving food is necessary to "avoid nutritional deficiencies later in life".  As you stated in your first 2 sentences, solid food does not replace breastmilk and is only introduced to teach babies about tastes and textures.



Breastfeeding moms are advised to continue taking their pre-natal vitamins as long as they're breastfeeding, but that's for the mother's benefit, not the baby's.  As I stated above, the mother's health will suffer before her baby's will.  There is no evidence that breastfed babies need multi-vitamins.  The nutrients supplied by breastmilk are much more bio-available (readily absorbed) than the synthetic vitamins & minerals added to artificial milk.

Nadia - posted on 12/16/2009

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Quoting Tonya:

Well my mom fed us out of a spoon at the age of 10 days old...now they say not to do that until they are six months. I turned out just fine so I fed my daughter rice cereal out of a spoon early too and she is just fine.



My parents smoked like trains around me when I was a baby and I turned out just fine. Dosent mean im gonna do that to my kids. Because now we know better. This is why research is being done all the time. We do the best we can with our kids with the most up to date info we have. This info is that your baby dosent need solids till 6mths. This is also a WHO recomendation.

Lisa - posted on 12/17/2009

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i did, i believe that as long as u n ur little 1 is rteady go ahead cos U who nows her best!!! good luck

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Erin - posted on 12/17/2009

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Quoting Kate:



Quoting Julie:

4 months is fine. Rice cereal first, then go on to the other cereals. Then veggies, fruit, meats...in that order. I've been told that babies that have fruit before veggies tend to favour the fruit because of the sweetness and then don't want the veggies as much. Like a couple of others moms have said, try each food for 3 days so you know if they have any allergic reaction. Once you do that you can keep adding more and more!





This is a myth. Breast milk is sweet so children prefer the sweet fruits. It doesn't matter if you feed veggies first or not.





But what if they are formula fed?

User - posted on 12/17/2009

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4 months is fine. Rice cereal first, then go on to the other cereals. Then veggies, fruit, meats...in that order. I've been told that babies that have fruit before veggies tend to favour the fruit because of the sweetness and then don't want the veggies as much. Like a couple of others moms have said, try each food for 3 days so you know if they have any allergic reaction. Once you do that you can keep adding more and more!

Kathy - posted on 12/17/2009

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It is ok to do that but I would start out with the cereal mixed with the fruit first. Then gradually introduce the veggies.

[deleted account]

My son's paediatrician recommended starting on rice cereal at 4 moths, veggies at 5 months, fruits at 6 months, and meats at 7 months. If you try food/cereal, you'll be able to tell if your baby is ready or not- does the food upset her stomach? Consult your baby's paediatrician for advice. Good luck!

User - posted on 12/16/2009

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ALL babies are different and grow at different paces. No one knows better what to feed their babies than Mommy. You know your baby and you should know if your baby is satisfied with what you are feeding she/he. The cereal I always wondered why I give my son cereal in the bottle at night to help him fill full longer threw out the night so he is not wakeing up for 1 in the middle of the night. My babies Dr. said he is fine and my baby is not over wieght eating what I give him.

Kimberly - posted on 12/16/2009

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i did i started mine on stage 1 and then when she turns 6months the doc said to start stage 2.

Kate CP - posted on 12/16/2009

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First of all, rice cereal has absolutely no nutritional value. It's empty calories. There is no point in feeding rice cereal to a baby. And yes, there are studies showing that the introduction of rice cereal to infants can lead to childhood obesity and diabetes. Just because you CAN feed a baby solids at a young age doesn't mean you SHOULD. They are BABIES. They usually don't even have teeth until they are close to six months old. If your child cannot sit up on their own you should not be feeding them anything other than breast milk or formula. Think about it this way: If you couldn't sit up without help do you think doctors would want to force you to eat solids? No, they would put you on a liquid diet.

Are you "allowed" to feed your four month old baby food? Well, yes, I suppose so. But the real question is SHOULD you? Does she seem dissatisfied with the breast or bottle? Is she showing interest in what you are eating? Can she grip things in her fist? Is she sitting up reliably without support? Has your pediatrician recommended that you start solids? If you can answer yes to these questions then sure, start solids. If not...I would wait.

User - posted on 12/16/2009

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If you look on the jars of baby food some do tell you when you can start to feed them at what age or for xample some show simbles. like if they are crawling. I started at 4 mths on all 1st stage vegies & fruits even put cereal n d bottle wit formula. my son is 8 mths and he has been on stage 3 gerber for sometime and I give him gerber graduates snacks like those cheeto looking thing he loves them. he does not have teeth yet but he can still eat them.

Jennifer - posted on 12/16/2009

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Quoting Rebecca:



Quoting Tonya:

Well my mom fed us out of a spoon at the age of 10 days old...now they say not to do that until they are six months. I turned out just fine so I fed my daughter rice cereal out of a spoon early too and she is just fine.





True,doctors used to recommend starting babies on rice cereal at just a few weeks old.  And that's great that you "turned out just fine."  






However, MOST people have NOT "turned out fine."  Have you looked around lately at all the obesity, diabetes, high blood pressure, and cholesterol problems plaguing our society?  It starts in infancy with poor nutrition and destroying a baby's inborn ability to know when s/he feels full.






More recently doctors were telling parents to start rice cereal at 3 or 4 months, but this was based on tradition -- rice is not a particularly healthy food, especially when it's been stripped of its nutritious outer hull and turned into white rice.  The boxed variety has vitamins added back, but these additives are not absorbed like naturally-occuring vitamins and minerals.  Also, rice is constipating (not very easy to digest).  But it's bland (like artificial milk) so most babies will eat it without too much refusal. 






The official recommendation has changed in the last few years, and fortunately it's more in line with what nature intended.  Unfortunately, most doctors, including pediatricians, DO NOT continue educating themselves on the latest research or even the current recommendations from their own lobbying group, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP).  This is just another reason to EDUCATE yourself instead of relying on a single medical doctor for parenting advice.





actually my pediatrition told me that adding rice or cereal to a bottle doesnt do anything to them and giving them rice or cereal early shouldnt make them obese but itz the overfeeding that moms dont know theyre doing that are causing all these problems...

[deleted account]

Don't let people scare you, its completely ok. I did it with both of my kids and their healthy and happy. Just be careful and start off with stage 1 food or VERY watered down ceral. My son LOVED oatmeal and banana. You may want to start off with fruits because their sweeter and the texture is a bit better. Good Luck!!

Danielle - posted on 12/16/2009

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I started my son on rice cereal when he was four months old. I started him on baby food at about 5 months. All is well. :)

Jennifer - posted on 12/16/2009

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yes you are...my son is 5 months and when he went in for his 4 month appointment the pediatrition said that he is aloud to have babyfood and that it helps to start early because they dont always get the swallowing right away so its a good way to get them to start practicing and then eventually theyll get it. so dont get discouraged if all your baby does is spit it out...she also said that you should only do 1 kind of food for about a week to make sure there are no allergies like if youre gonna do bananas do bananas for a few days just incase if the baby has an allergie you know what it is

Terri - posted on 12/16/2009

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it's best to start baby cereal mixed with formula or breast milk at 4 month's old. then start a new kind of baby food fruit every three day's mixed with the cereal at 6 month's. to make sure they aren't allergic to them.

Meredith - posted on 12/16/2009

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Something you also want to look out for if you do decide to start feeding your baby solids is the amount of sugar that is in the jar foods...we're talking like 14 grams for a small jar! That is CRAZY! I would suggest making your own food or be very cautious (atleast) of ehat you choose for the baby to eat. Natural foods are the best i would say...although all the advice I have gotten has said that breast milk is the best thing to feed a baby for the first 12 months. If your baby starts acting like he/she wants to eat more than that (around 6 months or older) then introduce some solids to supplement in their diet...but breastmilk is the main staple.

Katherine - posted on 12/16/2009

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I fed my son when he was 4 months. He loved it and he is very happy and healthy. It is up to you and what you feel comfortable with. Everyone's child is different. Unless your pediatrician has advised against it, then I don't see any harm.

Leslie - posted on 12/16/2009

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Our pediatrician had us start our kids on baby cereal at 4 months. 1st Rice, 2nd Oatmeal, 3rd Barley/Mixed Cereals. Use each type of cereal for 2 days before trying the next cereal (to be sure there is no adverse reaction). Once you've tried each type of cereal, alternate different cereals at different feedings. Start off mixing it very runny, and gradually increase thickness/texture as baby gets used to it.
Start veggies at 5 months (green first, followed by orange) 1/4 to 1/2 jar each feeding
Start fruit at 6 months 1/4 to 1/2 jar each feeding

Kandice - posted on 12/16/2009

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Yep. As long as she is using a spoon pretty well with cereal already, I'd go for it. My daughters both started jar food around 4 months & were both able to eat food I've made by 6 months! Start with veggies & give each one about a week to check for allergies. Then, go for fruits. This will help baby to know that not all foods are sweet. Leave meats & yogurts until last & start them around 6-7 months.



TO THE BREASTFEEDING COMMUNITY:

*Baby food is not meant to replace bottle feeding (formula or breast). It is meant to introduce children to foods that they will be eating the rest of their lives. As babies grow, their need for nutrients increases. Many women today do not receive the same nutrients that women in the past have gotten. Foods, fruits and veggies especially, can supplement those. Add a 1-2 oz food (even table food) to a feeding 2-3 times a day IN ADDITION to breasmilk to avoid nutritional deficiencies later in life. Otherwise, PLEASE make sure you are taking a breastfeeding supplemental vitamin or giving a liquid multi to your children.

Rebecca - posted on 12/16/2009

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Quoting Tonya:

Well my mom fed us out of a spoon at the age of 10 days old...now they say not to do that until they are six months. I turned out just fine so I fed my daughter rice cereal out of a spoon early too and she is just fine.


True,doctors used to recommend starting babies on rice cereal at just a few weeks old.  And that's great that you "turned out just fine."  



However, MOST people have NOT "turned out fine."  Have you looked around lately at all the obesity, diabetes, high blood pressure, and cholesterol problems plaguing our society?  It starts in infancy with poor nutrition and destroying a baby's inborn ability to know when s/he feels full.



More recently doctors were telling parents to start rice cereal at 3 or 4 months, but this was based on tradition -- rice is not a particularly healthy food, especially when it's been stripped of its nutritious outer hull and turned into white rice.  The boxed variety has vitamins added back, but these additives are not absorbed like naturally-occuring vitamins and minerals.  Also, rice is constipating (not very easy to digest).  But it's bland (like artificial milk) so most babies will eat it without too much refusal. 



The official recommendation has changed in the last few years, and fortunately it's more in line with what nature intended.  Unfortunately, most doctors, including pediatricians, DO NOT continue educating themselves on the latest research or even the current recommendations from their own lobbying group, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP).  This is just another reason to EDUCATE yourself instead of relying on a single medical doctor for parenting advice.

Rebecca - posted on 12/16/2009

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I am a big fan of instinctual parenting, but most people who think they are listening to their "instincts" are actually listening to all the cultural influences in their past and present. It's not your instincts telling you to introduce solids at a very young age (2, 3, 4 months old) -- it's all the other parents you know who did so, everyone asking you if your baby is sleeping through the night yet and telling you the baby will sleep better if she's full of solids, etc.



Our culture is so full of misinformation about the optimal (and natural) ways to feed babies -- breastfeeding and baby-led weaning -- so most parents don't really know much about how babies are supposed to eat. Babies who "don't seem full" after breastfeeding (or drinking a bottle of artificial milk) at 2 or 3 months old are expressing their inborn need to suck. Feeding them solids is NOT the right way to satisfy that need, and it destroys the baby's inborn ability to know whe s/he feels full (thus, the outrageous obesity rate in western countries that push artificial feeding and early solids).

SANDY - posted on 12/16/2009

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I started with the baby cereal - and than as the weeks passed by she wanted more and more. She is a big baby though =)

Rebecca - posted on 12/16/2009

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Quoting Jessica:

I always say mommy knows best. The dr is just a guid to what you think. There are lots of nutrition guides out there to tell you exactly when you should feed different foods, but they are all different and every dr will say something different too. We are supposed to eat food, so as long as you do it slowly and use your best judgment everything will be just fine.


Actually, babies are supposed to eat breast milk, not food.

Marcie - posted on 12/16/2009

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Oh totally I started my son when he was 5 months old but I know plenty that started at 4 months old. I plan on starting at 4 months with my baby too..

Amy - posted on 12/16/2009

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My pediatrician had us start cereal at 3 months, fruits and Veggies from month 4-5, meats at 6 months, and if she isnt over weight at that time we can give her juice at 7 months. She's doing great with her food!

Kizzy - posted on 12/16/2009

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Many Dr.'s will tell you not to however, I did for both of my children as well as all my niece's and nephew's. I feel that you know your baby, and if it is clear to you that your baby is consuming a lot of formula and still is not getting full than yes they need food. My son went from drinking 3 1/2 cases a milk to 2 once I started feeding him!

User - posted on 12/16/2009

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That's a good age to start. Technically if you start feeding your baby too early your child can develop stomach autoimmune disorders later on in life. Four months is a good time to start feeding your child.

Rebecca - posted on 12/16/2009

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Why do you want to give your baby food? Most health groups say to wait until at least 6 months, to reduce the risk of a variety of health problems, including constipation, nutrition deficiency, and allergic reactions in the short-term, and allergies, obesity, and diabetes later.



Breastmilk (or if necessary, artificial baby milk) should be baby's primary form of nutrition for the first 12 months -- that means 75% of your baby's diet should be breastmilk/formula until her first birthday, with a gradual transition after that. Your baby doesn't NEED solid food right now, and the health risks outweigh any possible benefits (I know of NO proven benefits of introducing solids early).



I would not look to the Gerber packages for advice on when to start feeding your baby solids (as another poster suggested), considering they are a for-profit company trying to make money by selling your processed baby foods. When you do start solids with your baby, making your own food is MUCH cheaper, healthier, and tastier!

Paula - posted on 12/16/2009

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technically you are now supposed to wait until they are 6 months old for food. You can feed cereal at 4 months. However I have a 4 mo old and she eats baby foods and is doing great. I began giving her foods at 3 months. She would not get full other wise. All in all, it is really up to you. Just watch to make sure she/he handles it okay.

Jessica - posted on 12/16/2009

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I always say mommy knows best. The dr is just a guid to what you think. There are lots of nutrition guides out there to tell you exactly when you should feed different foods, but they are all different and every dr will say something different too. We are supposed to eat food, so as long as you do it slowly and use your best judgment everything will be just fine.

Eva - posted on 12/16/2009

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my son is now 2..but when he was 4 months i could see that he was wanting more than milk has he was always hungry..so i started giving him organic baby cereal, at first i started puting more milk than cereal then later on as months progressed the cereal was a lot thicker..

Sunshine - posted on 12/16/2009

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Heck yea! If they're hungry feed em! I would start with Veggie's though cause the myth is that children love the sugar from the fruit more so than veggie's. Peyton didn't care he just wanted food, but some children may not eat veggie's after the fruit. I dunno, each child is different.

[deleted account]

Every baby is different. Trust your instincts as a mom. Most mom's try cereals first mixed with formula or breast milk. Then fruits,then veggies. It's also best to try one food at a time just in case a child has an allergy. This way you can pin point what was the cause if they have an allergic reaction.

Dawn - posted on 12/16/2009

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We started my son on rice cereal around 4 months and moved onto single grain oatmeal and 1st baby foods shortly after that. My pediatrician was the one that recommended it.

Alka - posted on 12/16/2009

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I 'll say wait at least for a month....if mother feed is sufficient...if u want start then u can start with fruits like steamed apple,or mashed banana ...

Leah - posted on 12/16/2009

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My doctor told me to start 1st foods because my little one needed to gain some weight and she didn't like cereal. I just mix the cereal with a little bit of either a fruit or vegetable.

Tonya - posted on 12/16/2009

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Well my mom fed us out of a spoon at the age of 10 days old...now they say not to do that until they are six months. I turned out just fine so I fed my daughter rice cereal out of a spoon early too and she is just fine.

Kelley - posted on 12/16/2009

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You can, but she doesn't need it until around 6 months. Also, be careful that she is still getting her primary source of calories from formula or breastmilk, not from solids. I disagree with the poster below that said that rice cereal is easier tolerated...true it is blander, but oatmeal is digested easier, I've always had to give my kids oatmeal b/c rice made them constipated. You should not put a 2 month old on cereal, if they are still hungry they need more formula or breastmilk.

Megan - posted on 12/16/2009

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Quoting Jennifer:

Physicians recommend that you wait until they are 6 months old before starting with foods. I on the other hand have never waited until then. It all depends on the baby and if you think they are ready. The first step is to try them on cereal before you try foods. Rice cereal is better tolerated than oatmeal. If you look at the back of the cereal packaging for baby cereal it will tell you at what stages in your babies life they are ready to start different types of foods. The first stage is (I'm looking at the back of Gerber's rice cereal box)
Supported Sitter - cereals, 1st foods
Independent Sitter - juices, 2nd foods
Crawler - 3rd foods
Beginning to walk - graduates
I hope this helps - just follow the directions set by the manufacturer of the product you are intending to use.






this is what i have always been told by the doc also....just ask your babies doctor! my son is 4 months and i started him on cereal only!

Sarah - posted on 12/16/2009

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o i wasnt sure when i know i got this paper from my ped. thta usually the average age is 5 months..she started my daughter on rice cereal at 3 months so i already did that..she watches every lil bite i take when i eat so that is why i was wondereing..i gave her a taste of baby pears and she loved it she ate it right up but i didnt really feed it to her i just gave her a taste so that is why i was wondering..i guess i will wait i have her apt on the 23 we will see what her doctor says :)

Keshia - posted on 12/16/2009

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i started my baby on foods when she was 4 months, i just started out on fruits and then veggies but i waited a few days after i tried somthing new to make sure she didnt have a bad reaction to it.

Erica - posted on 12/16/2009

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im with the other moms you'll know when your babies ready and it can hurt just stay away from the acidic ones and you can always mix the fruit with cereal until your more comfortable... it's the swallowing that's tricky...

Emily - posted on 12/16/2009

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I have three kids. My youngest is still nursing but with my other two I started them on rice cereal at 4 months. As long as they are sitting up it should be fine to feed them solids. But go easy at first. It is so nice once you do though cause then they start sleeping longer during the night. :)

Jennifer - posted on 12/16/2009

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Physicians recommend that you wait until they are 6 months old before starting with foods. I on the other hand have never waited until then. It all depends on the baby and if you think they are ready. The first step is to try them on cereal before you try foods. Rice cereal is better tolerated than oatmeal. If you look at the back of the cereal packaging for baby cereal it will tell you at what stages in your babies life they are ready to start different types of foods. The first stage is (I'm looking at the back of Gerber's rice cereal box)

Supported Sitter - cereals, 1st foods

Independent Sitter - juices, 2nd foods

Crawler - 3rd foods

Beginning to walk - graduates

I hope this helps - just follow the directions set by the manufacturer of the product you are intending to use.

[deleted account]

I started my baby on rice cereal at 4 months with his doctor's okay. Then I gradually added vegetables one at a time, then fruits. You introduce a new food every 3 days. That way if your child has an allergic reaction you know which food to avoid.

Michelle - posted on 12/16/2009

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My pediatrition always had them start baby cereal around 4 months, but both of my boys needed it sooner(they were always hungry) so they actually started the cereal around 2 months.

Malissa - posted on 12/16/2009

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I did and my baby is as healthy as can be. The doctor told me at four months to feed her veges, at 5 months to feed her fruits, and at six months to start meats and proteins. Gerber also has a really good yogurt out that she absolutely loves.

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