When to Feed the Baby Solids

Postnatal, Your questions

To read the previous part of this article, go to Baby Diets: When to Introduce Solid Foods.

It’s hard to know when to feed the baby. The following article will provide you with some advice.

Before four months, your baby isn’t physiologically ready to eat solid foods. They would likely pick them up and swallow them. But their gastrointestinal system isn’t ready to effectively handle and absorb solids as it can for milk. The digestive enzymes aren’t functional and their immature intestine can’t absorb the nutrients. Health directives state that babies should start solid foods around six months as a complement to breastfeeding. However, for some babies, you can start solid foods after four months, depending on their signs that they’re ready. That said, the majority of babies born at term and in good health can start solid foods between four and six months, but at six months THEY HAVE TO START.

In the normal development of a baby’s diet, everything starts between four and 10 months. This includes variety, taste development but also getting used to different textures. At around six to seven months, they should eat from all food groups. At nine months the textures should be granular, and at one year, small pieces of food are an important prerequisite for the baby’s development. Over time the baby will learn to pinch their food with their fingers, pick it up and take it to their mouth.

For premature babies, use the corrected age for the introduction of solid foods unless your doctor suggests otherwise for some situations (corrected six months).

If you wait too long before introducing solid foods, this can cause food behaviour issues (food rigidity) such as:

  • Hypersensitivity to food textures (automatic gag reflex);
  • Little variety;
  • Nibbling.

In contrast, starting a baby too early (before four months) can lead to:

  • Higher obesity;
  • Asthma problems;
  • Food allergies.

Between four and six months, your baby will show development signs that they’re ready to eat solid foods. Recognise their signs. Here are a few examples:

  • They can control their head;
  • The sit properly without help in their baby seat;
  • They can lean forward and rise back up;
  • They can bring objects to their mouth, and they no longer reject or push things that touch their tongue (extrusion reflex);
  • Their neck is strong and turns their head they’re no longer hungry;
  • They frequently wake up at night when before they would sleep. Periods of sleep shorten, and they drink a lot (they don’t “goof around” during nightly feeding, drink a lot and continue to drink during the day despite what they drank at night).

Until your baby can crawl and move around, the foods you give them should remain puréed or crushed without lumps to avoid choking. Once they can do this, you can add small pieces under supervision.

To learn about foods to start with, go to Foods to Start With in your Baby’s Diet.

Discover our videos

Subscribe to a monthly or quarterly package now to access full videos.

The Bonapace method

The Bonapace method

Are you nervous that your baby is coming soon? Do you have questions about your role as caregiver during labour
Naturopathy, Pregnancy and the Baby

Naturopathy, Pregnancy and the Baby

Pregnant or breastfeeding women can care for certain physical and emotional issues with approved natural or homeopathic products. This also
Breastfeeding: Specific Situations

Breastfeeding: Specific Situations

Are you breastfeeding and it’s painful? Are you worried you can’t produce enough milk? Along with Dr. Julie Choquette, Marie
Baby Massages

Baby Massages

Do you want to massage your baby but don’t know where to start? In this video, Suzanne Boily, baby massage

Discover other articles

Baby Vision

Baby Vision

When you give birth to your baby, and they are laying on your chest, they seem to recognise you. But can they really see you,
Can you suggest some recipes for baby purées?

Can you suggest some recipes for baby purées?

Marie, I would like to make homemade purées for my baby who will turn five months old shortly. I was wondering if you had purée
Homeopathy and Children

Homeopathy and Children

Homeopathic medications are designed with therapeutic indication and posology adapted to the general population, from babies to seniors.
When should I get my baby’s ears pierced?

When should I get my baby’s ears pierced?

Marie, my baby Jasmine is three months old, and I am hesitant about piercing her ears. Do you have recommendations you can share? Thanks in

When to Feed the Baby Solids

Par Marie Fortier Temps de lecture: 2 min
0