When we’re out and about, a lot of people seem surprised by the types of foods Emily is eating despite her age. Long ago, we decided to go the route of baby led solids and I’m so glad we did because these days Emily eats what we eat, which makes eating out at restaurants a LOT easier!
There are still a number of foods we are avoiding in her diet:
Berries (other than blueberries and cranberries)
Milk (other than yogurt)
Nuts (although my MIL has given her walnuts…:S)
Juice (other than pasteurized apple cider when needed for constipation)
Potatoes (I don’t think they’re very nutrient dense for her)
Alright, so other than the general categories above, we’ve enjoyed quite a few new things this month:
Whole Grain Pastas and Breads (including spaghetti & meatballs!)
Cheerios, Puffs, Teething biscuits
Fruits & Veggies:
All fruits (except those listed above) in chunks, uncooked
All veggies, in chunks or spears, mostly cooked semi-soft
Chicken cut into bits
Roast beef cut into bits
Egg yolk (not her favourite)
Yogurt (plain, 3%), with mashed fruits or veggies
So basically? Everything BUT what I listed above. Seriously, the girl will eat pretty much everything as long as we allow her to feed herself. She’s even had red pepper flakes in her spaghetti when her forgetful mama didn’t dish hers out first! I know it’s too early to tell, but I think we are on the road to an UNpicky eater!
Things we both LOVE:
PC Banana Bran biscuits
Chicken and rice soup (homemade, and she WILL allow us to spoon feed her this)
Toast with ‘jam’ (pureed fruit or veggies)
In terms of fluids, Emily still breastfeeds multiple times a day, as well as drinking water from a cup or straw during meals. Along the same lines as her difficulty (or rather inability or indifference) to drinking from a bottle, she only uses sippy cups to chew on, so we have to hold the cup for her to drink from.
In the coming months I’d like to try and introduce some mild cheeses, more citrus, and some tofu. We will be waiting the full 1 year (at least that is our intention at this point) for honey, strawberries and raspberries, and peanuts. She hasn’t appeared to have ANY reaction to the foods she’s had so far, praise the Lord, so we’ve felt comfortable including wheat and dairy in her diet, but those foods don’t typically cause an anaphylactic allergic reaction like nuts and strawberries, so we were more at ease with the possible repercussions. We also may start introducing some fish soon, but we’re not big fish eaters so it’s not a big hurry. :)
I’ve had some emails and questions from friends as to why we started her ‘so young’ on chunks and table foods, but in reality, she started on solids a lot later than most kids. In recent years it has become the norm to start feeding solids at 4 months instead of 6 (or later), however it was only because feedings were moved earlier when babies were less able or designed to handle solids that necessitated pureeing everything. How do you think parents fed babies before we had blenders and food processors! When doing baby led solids, babies can’t move stuff into the backs of their throats until they’ve learned to chew, which doesn’t come until they lose the tongue thrust reflex (which normally happens at around 6 months but will occur earlier if trained with a spoon), so choking is actually LESS likely if giving a 6 month old chunky fist sized solids. I’m open to receiving any questions by email or in the comments about the more practical realizations of taking a baby led approach to solids.
Lastly, you may notice that in most of the photos of Emily eating she is stripped down to just her diaper. Especially in the early weeks of solids, and particularly at dinner time when foods are more sauce heavy, a bib wouldn’t even start to protect her clothing from the mess she made while eating. These days a bib isn’t even really necessary as she doesn’t allow much to get past her mouth; the exception is when she’s finished with something or it’s in her palm and she can’t get to it, she drops it over the side of her high chair. Too bad we don’t have a dog!