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Thread: A call to all BLS pros out there!

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Posts
    286

    Default A call to all BLS pros out there!

    So...

    My LO is almost 5 mos and I want to start planning ahead for when he is ready. Basically, things didn't go well with nursing at the start so I had to scramble and play catch-up. It involved an emergency trip to get a pump, pumping for weeks, nipple shields, etc. We perservered and now eat "from the source", but it was a hard road. So I want to be prepared for solids.

    Is there a book (or books) that goes through the BLS method and gives suggestions?

    Is there "gear" that I am going to need? Baby mill, steamer, other?

    Are there any "gotchas" that I should be aware of? Beyond stuff like no honey, no nuts, no milk, etc?

    Thanks in advance!
    Dana
    Wife to Jonathan Edward, 3/29/2002
    Mother of Alexander "Lex" Edward, 3/4/2007
    Attachment Parenting - it's not what you do, it's why you do it.
    Breastfeeding
    Co-Sleeping
    Wearing Lex as often as possible
    Daytime cloth diaperer, nighttime sposie user

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
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    Default Re: A call to all BLS pros out there!

    All I can tell you is have fun with it. It should be a fun experience for you and baby. I don't really use any gear that I didn't have in my kitchen already- steamer basket, hand blender (for our brief foray into purees), lots of fresh fruit and veggies. I can say that I bathe my lo a lot more now, cause I just turn her loose with the food to do with what she will. Follow your lo's cues and it's pretty easy.
    “We are not put on earth for ourselves, but are placed here for each other. If you are there always for others, then in time of need, someone will be there for you.”
    --Anonymous

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
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    8,272

    Default Re: A call to all BLS pros out there!

    For me one of the great things about doing baby led solids is that you really don't need a whole bunch of equipment or supplies since baby skips purees and goes directly to finger foods.

    A steamer is handy - I use one of those simple metal steamers that are shaped like a flower and fit into most pots.

    No food mill needed - if you're doing baby led then you're skipping purees.

    Unfortunately, no books out there yet! One of the best resources I've seen is a blog created by people who have done a baby led approach - there are sections on "finger food basics" and "recipies".

    If you're worried about food allergies, here's a resource I like.

    Some other good sites that have info about when to offer different foods include:
    http://www.wholesomebabyfood.com/
    http://askdrsears.com/html/3/T030100.asp

    We started offering our DS solids soon after he turned 6 mo. We started with REALLY soft foods that he could mush around and not really need to chew. Some good things to try: avocado, very ripe banana, sweet potato.

    Once we were confident that DS was doing well on these very soft foods, we started adding steamed veggies and soft fruits. Veggies I steam until overdone (my test - I can pick it up and eat by mushing foods between my tounge and the roof of my mouth without needing to chew). The recommendation is to cut foods into either french-fry shaped pieces or about the size of LO's fist.

    Don't be suprised if the first few times your LO gags. This is a normal part of LO learning how to handle food in his / her mouth. Gagging can be quite dramatic and can involve LO throwing up. We have a great video of our DS very excited at eating his first food (avocado) and then a few seconds later gagging and then throwing up the avocado plus alot of his last breastfeeding session.

    Gagging is NOT choking. Choking is an obstructed airway (can't breathe) and needs an immediate response to help LO clear his / her airway.

    I do strongly recommend taking an infant CPR class to learn what to do if LO chokes.
    Lynn
    DS1: bf 7/2006 -> 4/2009; multiple food allergies
    DS2: bf 9/2009 -> ???
    ; multiple food allergies
    Breastmilk Donor - http://hmbana.org/index/donatemilk
    Click HERE to learn about baby led solids (BLS) / baby led weaning (BLW)

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Posts
    1

    Default Re: A call to all BLS pros out there!

    "The recommendation is to cut foods into either french-fry shaped pieces or about the size of LO's fist."

    Does anyone know why this is? I do not use purees, but I do not feel comfortable at all giving LO big hunks of food! I dice everything very small (about the size of a pea). She is almost 9 months old and gets everything to her mouth, and has since 7 1/2 months or so. She does not choke or gag on foods this size. What is the value is giving the baby a big piece as opposed to a small dice? Is it b/c some babies can't pick up small pieces?

    Just curious!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Posts
    2,700

    Default Re: A call to all BLS pros out there!

    Quote Originally Posted by lsksam View Post
    For me one of the great things about doing baby led solids is that you really don't need a whole bunch of equipment or supplies since baby skips purees and goes directly to finger foods.

    A steamer is handy - I use one of those simple metal steamers that are shaped like a flower and fit into most pots.

    No food mill needed - if you're doing baby led then you're skipping purees.

    Unfortunately, no books out there yet! One of the best resources I've seen is a blog created by people who have done a baby led approach - there are sections on "finger food basics" and "recipies".

    If you're worried about food allergies, here's a resource I like.

    Some other good sites that have info about when to offer different foods include:
    http://www.wholesomebabyfood.com/
    http://askdrsears.com/html/3/T030100.asp

    We started offering our DS solids soon after he turned 6 mo. We started with REALLY soft foods that he could mush around and not really need to chew. Some good things to try: avocado, very ripe banana, sweet potato.

    Once we were confident that DS was doing well on these very soft foods, we started adding steamed veggies and soft fruits. Veggies I steam until overdone (my test - I can pick it up and eat by mushing foods between my tounge and the roof of my mouth without needing to chew). The recommendation is to cut foods into either french-fry shaped pieces or about the size of LO's fist.

    Don't be suprised if the first few times your LO gags. This is a normal part of LO learning how to handle food in his / her mouth. Gagging can be quite dramatic and can involve LO throwing up. We have a great video of our DS very excited at eating his first food (avocado) and then a few seconds later gagging and then throwing up the avocado plus alot of his last breastfeeding session.

    Gagging is NOT choking. Choking is an obstructed airway (can't breathe) and needs an immediate response to help LO clear his / her airway.

    I do strongly recommend taking an infant CPR class to learn what to do if LO chokes.

    Couldn't have said it better myself!
    And I agree with NorasMommy about the bathing - Peter has to be bathed after every meal because he gets it everywhere!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Posts
    8,272

    Default Re: A call to all BLS pros out there!

    According to the guidelines paper:

    Won't he choke?

    Many parents worry about babies choking. However, there is good reason to believe that babies are at less risk of choking if they are in control of what goes into their mouth than if they are spoon fed. This is because babies are not capable of intentionally moving food to the back of their throats until after they have learnt to chew. And they do not develop the ability to chew until after they have developed the ability to reach out and grab things. Thus, a very young baby cannot easily put himself at risk because he cannot get the food into his mouth in the first place. On the other hand, the action used to suck food off a spoon tends to take the food straight to the back of the mouth, causing the baby to gag. This means that spoon feeding has its own potential to lead to choking – and makes the giving of lumpy food with a spoon especially dangerous.

    It appears that a babies general development keeps pace with the development of his ability to manage food in his mouth, and to digest it. A baby who is struggling to get food into his mouth is probably not quite ready to eat it. It is important to resist the temptation to 'help' the baby in these circumstances since his own developmental abilities are what ensure that the transition to solid feeding takes place at the right pace for him. This process is also what keeps him safe from choking on small pieces of food, since, if he is not yet able to pick up small objects using his finger and thumb, he will not be able to get, for example, a pea or a raisin into his mouth. Once he is able to do this, he will have developed the necessary oral skills to deal with it. Putting food into a babies mouth for him overrides this natural protection and increases the risk of choking.
    and

    There is no need to cut food into mouth-sized pieces. Indeed, this will make it difficult for a young baby to handle. A good guide to the size and shape needed is the size of the babies fist, with one important extra factor to bear in mind: Young babies cannot open their fist on purpose to release things. This means that they do best with food that is chip-shaped or has a built-in 'handle' (like the stalk of a piece of broccoli). They can then chew the bit that is sticking out of their fist and drop the rest later – usually while reaching for the next interesting-looking piece. As their skills improve, less food will be dropped.
    (Note: the British "chip" = American "french fry")

    My interpretation is that the above guidelines are for young babies who are starting baby led solids and don't yet have good pincer grip or eating skills.

    Once my DS got a good pincer grip and good at managing all sorts of foods, we started giving him all sorts of foods from tiny peas to a whole chicken drumstick to a whole plum or peach (I take the first bite to break the skin).

    Lynn
    Lynn
    DS1: bf 7/2006 -> 4/2009; multiple food allergies
    DS2: bf 9/2009 -> ???
    ; multiple food allergies
    Breastmilk Donor - http://hmbana.org/index/donatemilk
    Click HERE to learn about baby led solids (BLS) / baby led weaning (BLW)

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Posts
    8,272

    Default Re: A call to all BLS pros out there!

    Quote Originally Posted by Rochelleann View Post
    Couldn't have said it better myself!
    Awwww .... thanks!
    Lynn
    DS1: bf 7/2006 -> 4/2009; multiple food allergies
    DS2: bf 9/2009 -> ???
    ; multiple food allergies
    Breastmilk Donor - http://hmbana.org/index/donatemilk
    Click HERE to learn about baby led solids (BLS) / baby led weaning (BLW)

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Posts
    8,272

    Default Re: A call to all BLS pros out there!

    bump
    Lynn
    DS1: bf 7/2006 -> 4/2009; multiple food allergies
    DS2: bf 9/2009 -> ???
    ; multiple food allergies
    Breastmilk Donor - http://hmbana.org/index/donatemilk
    Click HERE to learn about baby led solids (BLS) / baby led weaning (BLW)

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