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Thread: New here...have some questions

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
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    6

    Default New here...have some questions

    I'm really glad I found this board because I have lots of questions about breastfeeding my 6 month old daughter and starting solids!!! At her 6 month well check on Wednesday, my Pediatrician told me to go ahead and start her on rice cereal and then I can introduce some fruits and veggies. For some reason I'm very overwhelmed at the idea of starting solids! I just don't know how much, how often, how many different foods at one meal, ect, ect. I know this isn't rocket science and that I should just follow my baby's cues...but it still seems so hard for some reason. Also, my Ped. was pretty vauge about amounts and how many times a day to feed her solids so that left me confused as well. I've fed her rice cereal two days in a row now (only in the morning) and she's eaten 1 tsp of cereal mixed with 2 tsp. breast milk. She always accepts the spoon of cereal but never seems overly hungry for it so I've just given her the tsp. and haven't increased the amount yet. I really want to BF her for a full year and am glad to know that solids at this point aren't critical but I just would like some guidelines as to how much I should be feeding her of cereal, fruit, veggies, ect. and is there a total amount that I shouldn't go past (especially if I'm feeding her different foods at one meal). Is it ok to give cereal, veggie and fruit at one meal or is that too much....see I'm so clueless!! I guess I'm just afraid that if I feed her too many solids, my milk suppy will decrease so I want to avoid that. To add to my confusion, my niece (who's 5 months old) is breastfed and was started on rice cereal at 4 months. She now eats 1/4 cup of cereal mixed with 1/4 cup of BM twice a day! That seems like such a huge amount since I'm only feeding my daughter 1 tsp once a day but it makes me wonder if that's how much she SHOULD be eating...especially since she's a month older. One more question....on this board when you say a baby ate 2 TBS cereal, is that the amount of dry cereal or the total amount after liquid has been added? How much liquid should I be adding at this point?
    Thanks! (sorry for the novel!)
    -Laura

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2006
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    112

    Default Re: New here...have some questions

    Feel free to take the solids thing VERY slowly. My DD started on rice cereal around 6 months. We mixed about 1-2 tbsp of dry cereal with some breast milk (very watery at first and then thicker). She didn't take very much at first and some days more than others. The first phases of solids are more getting them used to eating in a new way...not so much for nutrition. As far as amounts, follow her lead and continue nursing. She will let you know when she's finished. Best not to force the issue of eating solids. Children acquire the ability or desire to eat solids at different paces.

    Once she is starting to take some cereal, you can also introduce some pureed or mashed fruit or veggies. The LLL website has some good links to first foods. Some good ones are bananas, peaches or pears as fruits and avocado, peas, or carrots as veggies. Introduce one at a time for 3-4 days just to make sure there's no reaction. You don't have to buy jarred baby food either. You can just puree some with water in the blender/food processor or mash with a spoon or fork. In those early stages, we'd usually do one veggie or fruit with cereal and gradually added new ones. Yogurt is a good one you can add too.

    I'm sure others will offer more advice and ideas. I found two books invaluable in those early months of feeding. Child of Mine by Ellen Sattyr talks a lot about how and when to introduce solids. Another good book is Ruth Yaron's "Super Baby food" which gives good info on what foods you can introduce at what ages and what amounts you might expect them to eat.

    Good luck and take it slow. DD was more than 9 months old before she really ate "meals" (as opposed to nursing exclusively for nutrition). Now at 1 year, she eats 3 meals a day plus snacks and still nurses morning and night...and sometimes during the day on request.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
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    1,813

    Default Re: New here...have some questions

    Use this link http://www.askdrsears.com/html/3/T032000.asp. It have very good information on introducing solids.

    There's no right amount of food for your baby, if he's full she will refuse to keep eating. The only real importing thing when introducing solids is to wait a few days between new foods and watch for any reaction. Don't compare your child with another one, if I would it do compare my son whit his sister I would it think that I was starving him since my first probably ate four times the amount my baby does know when she was his age. Follow her cues. My son first food was mashed banana, a whole easier an accessible than cereal and much more nutritious.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
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    COUGARTOWN Baby! From here on in!
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    Default Re: New here...have some questions

    Hi!
    When I 1st came to this board I had the same questions! If you go out into the initial LLL website there are great articles about what signs your child exhibits before really being ready as well as great 1st foods. Based on the info we found on the site as well as feedback from other mothers, we decided to skip cereal all together (a lot of emtpy calories and not very nutritious) and just give soft things like avacado, bananas and sweet potatoes. But the most important thing I learned here is that babies can be sustained for up to a year on breastmilk alone (I know it's not what your hearing at the doctors office) so don't feel like you HAVE to do anything! Even when you do introduce solids you should offer the breast 1st and after. My DS turned 6 months on the 22nd of June and cut his 1st two teeth two weeks before that. We tried a little with bannanas with no luck and then a little with plain yogurt. He doesn't seem very interested so we'll try again in a couple of weeks. Don't worry! I know there's talk of three meals a day by 9 months and not enough iron after six months. Don't believe the hype. Your baby will give you the ques and eat when ready.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Posts
    447

    Default Re: New here...have some questions

    http://www.lalecheleague.org/FAQ/solids.html
    http://www.lalecheleague.org/FAQ/firstfoods.html

    The most improtant thing you can do to ensure a good milk supply and discourage premature weaning is always bf before offering solids so that baby fills up on breastmilk and solids are just a little extra on top. Never pressure baby to eat more solids than she seems interested in. She really will show you cues when she's ready for more. Solids should not begin to replace breastmilk feeds until 11-12 mo; they're more for a fun learning expirence until then.

    Ds did eat some baby cereals, but I never bothered to "increase" his cereal intake as instructed on the box. (They expect a baby to eat 10 tablespoons of cereal in one day by 9 mo! ) He started out with some rice cereal, then 3 days later tried some banana (he grabbed my hand when I was going to eat the banana, pulled it to his mouth, and started chomping away! lol). Next, we offered him some baby oatmeal, but he dind't much like it unless we mixed it with the rice cereal. I don't exactly remember the order after that, but he liked pears, peaches, squash, carrots, and sweet potatoes. At 6-7 mo he was eating about 1-3 tablespoons of solids at one sitting, twice a day. He has always had a huge interest in solid foods, though.

    I also wanted to add that he is currently 14.5 mo and still nursing strong! He nursed at least 8-10+ times in each 24 hours until he was 12 mo. He now nurses at least 6-10+ times! lol
    Last edited by Feorsteorra; July 2nd, 2006 at 08:41 PM.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
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    42

    Default Re: New here...have some questions

    Because of my husband's strong allergy history, I exclusively nursed my now 3yr old for 8 1/2 mos despite others urging to give solids. All the babies in her daycare were on solids well before her. Then I very gradually introduced 1 food at a time (usually waited a week in between) for several months starting with single grain rice cereal and banana. By a year, she was eating hummus, yogurt, peas, etc. while the other daycare kids were eating chocolate, cake, and candy by then. Though I have relaxed and now offer her sweets and treats periodically, she doesn't seem to live to eat. I have struggled with being overweight most of my life, and hope she won't have this issue. BTW, she continued to nurse to 22 mos. We are still offering new foods as she is interested (she recently decided she liked salad and cranberries).

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Posts
    42

    Default Re: New here...have some questions

    You've already gotten some great answers.

    Just wanted to add a comment: while I do have Super Baby Food and like it as a general reference for how to prepare foods, etc., the guidelines for how much your baby should be eating at what age have always seemed like a LOT of food to me. For a 7-month old, that book lists 2-3 servings of food (frozen cubes) 3 times a day. I think my 7-month old was eating one cube once a day most days, some days no solids at all.

    What worked for us was just to keep focus on BFing and to think of offering solids as a fun experiement/for socialization, etc. One Mommy I know mentioned that all three of her kids never ate cereal and never had "baby food." They just went straight to finger foods when they were ready. That sounded delightfully easy to me, and made me rethink things a bit. We skipped cereal, but we did do some mashed foods in the very beginning (banana, avocado, etc) just once a day. As with BFing, you will start to get used to reading baby's cues. As long as you offer to nurse throughout the day and just before offering solids, I wouldn't worry about overfeeding your baby too much.... she will turn her head away or give you some other indication that she's not interested.

    I really like the LLL book "My Child Won't Eat," I think the title is a bit of a misnomer as it's really about how to rethink the pressure we all feel to "get our kids to eat" and it puts it in scientific/historical perspective.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Posts
    31

    Default Re: New here...have some questions

    I did 2 totally different things w/ each of my girls:

    I started my now 3YO on solids at 4 mos. Rice cereal, which she gagged on for weeks, then started veggies close to 6 mos.

    My 7MO was started on veggies at about 6.5mos. We skipped cereal altogether. She now eats about 1 oz of veggies 2x/day along with some homemade rice cereal (it's just short grain brown rice & basmati ground to a powder, then cooked for 10 min . . . I had to then blend it again), then freeze.

    I work full-time and also have an older child, but I've found that my dd likes the food I make for her much better than the jarred stuff (even the organic jarred food). Best of all, I can puree it to the consistency that she likes. I invested in a "Magic Bullet" blender, which works very well for quick meals.

    If you just follow your dc's cues, you'll be fine. I just watch to make sure that foods are supplementing her BFeeds, and EBMFeeds, not replacing them, and I've instructed my DCare to do the same.

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