Baby led weaning: a method of adding complementary foods to a baby’s diet of breastmilk or formula.
So what does that even mean? Simply skip the spoonful of mush and go straight to “grown up” food. You can give your baby’s just about everything you eat yourself.
One of the most important steps is making sure your baby is ready! Absolutely no earlier than six months old. Aside from age your baby should be able to sit up on their own, have lost tongue thrust reflex and have the ability to grasp on to things. If your baby can’t do all of those things just give it some time I promise your little one will be chowing down with the rest of the family before you know it.
Choking is a big fear and reason many parents don’t do baby led weaning. Blw can actually be safer when done right because baby is able to regulate they’re own food intake. It is very important to give your baby pieces that are large enough for them to hold and maneuver into their mouth.
One of the most important things to know before beginning blw is knowing the difference between gagging and choking. Gagging is what protects your baby from choking. Never ever stick your fingers in babay mouth when gagging because it often times pushes the food further into throat and can cause choking.
Another common concern is whether or not a baby needs teeth to safely do blw. This is not true as long as the food is soft and not too hard or tough there’s no problem with not having teeth. A couple examples are things like a banana or pasta that are nice and soft.
Advantages of baby led weaning
- Sitting together as a family at meal times
- Not having to buy special foood for baby
- Prevents over eating as baby can decide when they are done eating on their own
- Supports independence
- Exposes baby to different textures right from the start
Baby led weaning definitely isn’t for everyone I can’t tell you how many outfit changes we went through, meals wasted or messy floors and high chairs give cleaned. But I am firm that it was the best decision for our family!