Feeding Your Six-month-old: Here Are Some Tips To Follow

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Feeding your six-month-old: Raising a baby is no easy task. You have to take care of its food habits, allergies (which you don’t even know), mood swings and whatnot.

Food choices are usually sorted in the first 4 months of the baby because it consumes mainly breast milk only. But once it becomes six months old, the food habits have to change. The baby is now physically ready to consume solids. According to medical experts, the baby develops digestive enzymes at this age which helps in digesting the solids. However, parents have to be very careful in choosing the right food to feed the baby. So here are some tips to follow, and get ideas for healthy first foods for your six-month-old

1. Feed only purees, porridges or gruels

A six-month-old baby is just developing to have teeth. So even if it is physically ready to consume solids, the food should be finely mashed or made into semi-solid forms. Food items like purees, porridge, gruels and clear soup are recommended.

2. Breastfeeding must not stop if possible

Even if the baby begins consuming solids, breast milk should be fed as usual- every 2-3 hours. Solids should be fed in between the breast milk feeding schedules.

3. Make a chart, because feeding solids has a pattern

For instance, if you are feeding fruit purees, continue that for a week before changing into vegetables. Avoid mixing the food items within a week. However, you can change the fruits every three days, if you are feeding fruit porridge. For instance, you can feed apple puree for 3 days before changing into banana puree. The three-day wait rule helps in identifying and controlling any allergic reaction. Feed a single fruit or a single vegetable at a time. Usually, the first week should start with fruits

4. When to feed?

The solid food should be fed to the baby either at breakfast or lunch. Which means, a six-month-old baby should eat solids only once a day and not in the evening or night hours.

5. Include these food products

Be careful about the food that you feed your baby. After all these will be the first solids for your child. Since it is having the food for the first time, pick those which are safe, healthy, nutritious, easily digestible and less allergic. You can make purees of fruits like apple, avocado, banana, pears and peaches. While, vegetables should include carrot, pumpkin and potato or sweet potato. Gruel of grains like rice, suji, ragi, barley, sabhudana, phool makhana and quinoa among others is healthy for the baby. Note, only give these in gruel or puree or mash form. Pulses are also good for the health of the babies but only yellow moong dal should be fed. Pulses are also good for the health of the babies but only yellow moong dal should be fed. Milk products like ghee and butter can also be fed in moderation.

6. What should not be fed

The child should not be fed with any non-vegetarian food products. Moreover, while making the purees, remember to not serve a mixture of fruits and milk because that can cause ingestion, loss of appetite, no weight gain and accumulation of toxins. Do not add salt or sugar in the baby’s food till it turns 1. Use sterilised bowls and avoid feeding clear soups for a long time.

7. Watch signs for allergic reactions

Often babies develop allergic reactions to food items because their bodies have been introduced to them for the first time. So watch out for unusual symptoms like running nose, rashes, watery eyes, colic etc and consult the doctor. 

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