The transition to solid foods is an important milestone in the lives of our children. Not only does it herald an important growth stage, but it will also be easier to ensure their dietary and nutritional needs are met. It also represents an important opportunity to ensure that your child has a diverse palette that will make meeting their nutritional needs easier. While some children are enthusiastic about trying new foods, others can be hesitant or even combative about trying new things. Advanced Pediatrics of Rockland is here to help your family navigate this important milestone and ensure a future of excellent health.
Gettings Started With Solid Foods With Your Child
Most nutritionists suggest introducing solid foods around your child’s sixth month of age. Most children will be sitting up on their own and taking an interest in the foods being eaten by others. Critically, this is also the time in their life when the tongue-thrusting reflex used while nursing begins to subside. This reflex can interfere with eating as it tends to result in food being pushed out of the mouth.
When introducing new foods to your children, you must vary the foods you provide. This is the time in their life that most influence their future preferences and willingness to experiment with unfamiliar food.
Some good first solid foods for children include:
- Vegetables and fruits that have been pureed
- Blended poultry and meat that has been cooked
- Baby cereals that are fortified with iron
You may notice that these foods aren’t “solid,” like a hamburger or pasta. Instead, they’re foods with greater density than the liquids they’ve been living on until this point. However, the variety of baby foods available still provides plenty of opportunity to introduce new foods, flavors, and textures at this stage. By ensuring their first solid food experience is varied, you can provide them with a broader tolerance for flavors and textures as adults.
Remember that this process will be as much a learning experience for your child as it is for you. They will need to learn how to eat solid foods and will likely make quite a mess with their first meals. If you remain positive and encouraging, they’ll be able to adapt and become skilled at eating these foods over time.
It’s important that trying new foods is something they engage with actively. If they are struggling or showing resistance, then try a different food or let them be done eating. They’ll let you know if they’re hungry. Trying to force them to eat foods they resist is likely to produce an intractable intolerance or dislike for that as they get older.
Advanced Pediatrics of Rockland Is Here For Your Growing Family
Do you have a new child on the way or one who’s nearing six months of age? If so, call us at (845) 364-9800 to get help from our team navigating this important time. You can also stop by our location in Pomona, NY, to get guidance from our team and get a tour of our clinic.