When did baby start trying solid foods?

firstly happy new year, hope you all had a good one! So John is 13 weeks old and at the moment suffering from a 'virus'. It began as that cold before xmas and has developed into sickness and diarrhoea. Been doctors and having to collect a poo sample. Anyways he's now showing signs of wanting to try food. If you have it near him he'll try and grab it and likes to suck fingers if you've had food anywhere near them (yet still totally refusing the bottle - which at mo is fine as doc says breast milk cleanest and safest for him). He's also still teething, so bless he's in tears one minute and bouncy the next and asleep inbetween. Back to the point, my OHs family is trying to insist we try him on food, even my OHs mum who's normally very supportive of letting us do things our own way is saying 'it wouldn't do any harm to start letting him taste things.' In fairness if he wasn't quite so poorly at the moment we might let him taste little things, but that's just it - taste, not eat. My OH won't let his granny babysit because he's convinced she'll feed John. I think he might be right. we've had to take to ignoring her when she speaks because she's always giving advice. Also as soon as she knew we were letting him try anything at all she'd be trying to feed him. When did you all let your LOs try food and what was it? x

35 Replies

Hey! Happy New year!! Poor little John! How's his black eye?! I introduced baby rice as soon as Hugo hit 4 months. Then veggies and fruit at 5.5 months! he went mad for rice and loves veg etc even more!! :) I personally wouldn't do anything before 4 months but I know some people do...

We gave rice to help him sleep longer, but knew he wanted more "food" when he would stare at us eating and move his little mouth in an "eating" motion

If you want him to just have a taste rather than actually eating and digesting it, maybe try a Rusk, which could also help him relieve his teething pain, or maybe a chunk of Apple/other hard fruit or veg to suck on (under very close supervision of course!!)


See that's what I wanted to do, let him just try things over next few weeks then when hit four months let him eat a little under supervision. He's been staring at us eating since week three, now does little eating motions with hands and everything x

Oh and his black eye gone, he's now attempting to give his daddy one instead with his aggressive cuddles x

Oh bless him!! Sounds like a real monkey!! Just give him things to chomp on then, so long as you watch him and they are big bits so he won't choke it shouldn't be a problem for him to give it a go!! ;) xx

Hey. Aw bless little John. Must be horrible for him and you. James was the same with the teething and the moody then happy and asleep. Always trying to eat everything at all and staring at me while I eat. He turned 16weeks on boxing day. On Xmas day he has half a Rusk mushed up with milk which he loved. Now he has a bowl of porridge every day at lunch. He loves it so much and is so happy. He had a chunk of apple to chew and suck on the other day, only with me holding it though. He has had a taste of a couple of other bits as well but so far just the porridge as actual food as I plan to ease him in :-) x

We plan to ease John in. He's a greedy little boy anyways so know we going to need to keep an eye on him with food. He always wants fed when food comes out so I'm very used to cold dinners lol x

Haha! They know when we want our dinners the cheeky things. James is always a blocker to meal times too! Yh I'm sticking with the porridge and it's just the plain baby one. Didn't want anything sweet as he may not take anything savoury after his ffirst taste was sweet...I've seen that occur couple of times. I don't want to do too much too soon and the bulk of new food and such will be after 6mths. But he was on 7/8oz bottles all day and after his 8oz bottle in the evening he often continued to be starving and would have another 3 or 4oz....that's a lot of milk lol. It felt right for us to start giving him porridge in the day and that helps him feel more satisfied x

We were recommended not to give any solids prior to 4 months due to immature digestive system, risk of later problems by nhs weaning support. They said grabbing for food, sucking things is not a sign their ready- as that is developmentally normal skill to learn. At 4mnths they recommend only baby rice and pureed fruit and veg. Nothing like wheetabix as has gluten. I have breast fed my little boy who is a hungry baby (98th centile in weight). he is 6mnths on 22nd which is when i am going to start weaning. Everyone has own views and ppl often say advice is always changing and say other generations were weaned early. But then new research is always coming out, giving new insights. That's my opinion, and am not against early weaning at all but have a read up on it first :-) x

Hi ladies, joda, so glad you posted this my MIL is the same. Stayed with her at Xmas and came down to kitchen to find her giving Eoin a biscuit 'just to taste it'!!

Eoin is 20 weeks now and was having 38oz in 24hrs and still unsatisfied so have just started giving sweet potato. However, he's now dropped down to 34oz in 24hrs (this is fine) but he's now having this over 6 or 7 feeds rather than the 5 we were giving before starting solids- this includes 2 night feeds!!! He only occasionally had 1 night feed before!

He def seems to enjoy the sweet pot but overall I feel like we're going backwards - any ideas/ suggestions???

Wow!! He is a hungry baby!! Does he have hungry baby milk too? Hugo has never been a big milk drinker, only having just enough according to what the box says he should have! What does Eoin have before bed? Hugo would wake in the the night 3 times from birth to 4 months, then as soon as we introduced baby rice when he turned 4m he slept 12 hours! X

No he doesn't have the hungry baby milk as I didn't really like the idea of that - preferring something natural.

We had a perfect bedtime routine and Eoin would have 7 or 8 oz and then pretty much dropped his night feeds by himself. Then the loss of that bottle would catch up with him and he'd wake in night again. Chatted with HV and we agreed trying solids as Eoin was taking plenty of milk and was really trying to sleep through. HV suggested purée at lunchtimes - yest he had purée and bottle and then slept for 2 and 1/2 hours but woke twice in the night!

Sorry for long reply but feel like I'm going a bit mad!!!

Did "going backwards" coincidence with anything else like jabs or being poorly? It's so frustrating!! Don't know what I'd do if we started getting up in the middle of the night!!

Our routine consists of morning milk, porridge, 3 more bottles throughout the day with veg twice in between (currently sweet potato, parsnip and carrot combo! It's gorgeous and I have to stop myself eating it lol) he then has a bowl of baby rice at 4.30pm then milk before bed.

He would eat 5x as much solid if we let him but then he wouldn't have his milk which he needs most!!

You could always try some "real food" late afternoon so he has a fuller tummy for longer?


Hey, no nothing else coincided. Bit odd as he's always been a good sleeper. I'm tempted to just go back to bottle feeding for now as to me a baby who wakes more often and doesn't sleep as well doesn't signal a satisfied/content baby?

Very confusing times and the tone of the reply from the tnct is not helpful in my opinion - we can all read the nhs guidelines.

Perhaps try him on baby rice or porridge first? Maybe the puree is a little bit much for his first solids for him? As the rice/porridge is made with their milk it makes a good start really. I had a session at the children's centre with a weaning lady who said it's perfectly fine to introduce solids to a baby from 4mths if they need it and as long as you're sensible with it and the progression it's perfectly safe for baby too. Just a suggestion hun. Its all a bit of a minefield really x

I felt the same re nct reply! as a mother I knew we needed to introduce food! I've found the internet more of a hindrance more often than not, when doing research! nhs, babycentre, munsnet, patient.co.uk all have their own views and then there is family and health visitors telling us what to do as well! As fattyboom said perhaps stop with the veg and try baby rice/porridge? Guidelines may say 6months for solids but it's clear on rice and porridge box it's suitable from 4 months! Xx

Hey, yeh perhaps as Fattyboom and Rach suggests I'll try some rice or porridge. The potato was mixed with his formula to keep it runny but I know the the veg whilst nutritious doesn't haven't many calories so he's maybe not feeling full. He was also only have about a teaspoon or 2 so far so not a huge amount. Just when you think you've got this baby thing nailed someone changes all the rules!!!

Yh I don't do loads of internet research I have to say. I try and go by James as a little individual...using common sense of course. I won't be feeding him any 3 course slap up meals for some time haha xx

Hi 2ndtimelucky. We all out of routine with John being ill as he had started to sleep right through night. At moment he's ebf as he refuses a bottle as HV would like us to have him taking water, but he won't. Not since his jabs. Which is a pain as means his weight is always on my mind as I wasn't producing anywhere near enough milk after first few weeks. we had him on hungry baby milk and was a lifesaver. Even HV said was far better than not getting enough. Maybe a small bottle just before bed would help? even 2oz would fill John for upto four times longer than I could with a big feed, and because he was full would sleep much better. But if you aren't comfortable with it then there's no point. As for your MIL. without being rude to them I've no idea now how to answer as rudeness is the only way we've managed to actually be listened too x

Bless him, it really sounds like he's been out of sorts - love the sound of his dancing though!

Eoin has his third set of jabs on Weds so goodness knows what impact that will have - hopefully not too bad.

I'm going to continue with sweet pot for next few days and then reconsider but thanks for the tips on hungry baby milk, I'll bear that in mind.

Thankfully with the MIL incident my husband jumped in before I had to say anything which is prob a good thing or as you say I may have been very rude!!!!

Hope John is feeling better soon xx

My little boys were about 15weeks when I started them on baby rice/rusk. My little girl is 18weeks and I am not going to introduce food to her yet as I just don't think she needs extra food yet other than the formula. My health visitor said 6 months start weaning but I will do it when I think she is ready not when they say.

Hiya, there are lots of different schools of thought on this one, but the Nhs recommend no food until 17 weeks. My LO did the same- reaching put for food and putting everything in his mouth, I was told that this was because he was teething and their taste buds are developing, plus the fact that they are interested in everything mum and dad do, including eating. As a result we have only just weaned him at six months he was ebf until then. His first food was breast milk and baby rice and since then squash, sweet potato, pear, apple and all sorts- Annabelle Karmel's books have been useful for us. Lots of people said because of his size and is appetite I would need to wean him early but we are so pleased we didn't. Bottom line really is do what is right for you three and don't feel pressured! Good luck x

The recommendation is to start around 6 months (very different to when MIL was weaning). If he grabs some food off your plate and eats it then he is ready even if that's before 6 months.

It's not unusual to find that giving purees/baby rice earlier makes sleep worse not better.

I've never heard this re: solids making sleep worse - what's the reasoning for this?

If he didn't still appear unsatisfied I would have continued with just formula.

I have never heard of it either!! Surely if a baby isn't satisfied after 38oz of milk in 24 hours, the automatic reaction would be that he needs solids?

If you look at the sort of food you give to a baby (pre 6 months) and consider the calorific value compared with milk (eg pureed carrots), it often comes out as less. Also pre 6 months your baby may not have the enzymes to digest some of the food you give (hence the recommendation to wait till 6 months). Milk really is sufficient until they can take food off your plate and eat it (no pureeing necessary unless you want to do so).

That is one way of weaning but certainly not the only way and not the only way recommended either. If I was to put my plate within reach of my baby of course he would grab the food and put it in his mouth. Even if he was 6 months that doesn't mean he is actually capable of handling big chunks of food right away. Some babies end up requiring a bit more than just milk. Just takes a sensible approach and common sense to work out what is inappropriate to feed a child when.

Every baby develops differently..my hv has said my son whos months nxt week is definitely ready for some kind of food like porridge. I wud prefer to start now so tht when I go bk to work in 3 months he will b well on his way to eating . There is no point comparing babies they r all so different.

Unfortunately the absolute denial by tnct that every baby is different and that the 'recommendation' is not suitable for everyone is probably the exact same reason why the poor lady in rachgibsons post re: breast feeding felt unable to cope and took her own life.

Carrot and basically all vegetables indeed have a lower caloric value but any idiot can understand that baby rice or porridge made with milk, be it breast or formula, contains more calories than milk alone, and that it would take longer to digest therefore satisfying a baby for longer, so why would giving baby rice or porridge make a baby sleep less, doesn't really make sense!!??

As for milk being sufficient, I've seen a comment on here from someone that attended a weaning course by nct ans was told milk is sufficient for 12 months and food should just be "for fun" yet they were advised that you should give your baby vitamins... clearly if you need to give vitamin supplements, milk isn't sufficient! Why on earth you you give a baby supplements when they can get those vitamins from real food?!?

wow, seems a minefield on the food front. How is grabbing for food not wanting to try it? Yes he likes to copy what mummy and daddy do. (Esp walking and now dancing which is a whole other minefield). but he is ready to try things, he's trying to taste things now and the more we don't let him the more frustrated he's getting. He now shouts at anyone with food, and just about bites daddys hand off when he gets calpol because its a different flavour from milk! Still not well, poop sample all collected and off to docs. Won't be trying anything until he's over whatever this virus is, then will be things he can suck. Thanks ladies, glad not just me struggling with the food thing. Its not weaning. He'll still be getting plenty of milk x

Dancing?? I hope whoever he is mimicking has got skills!! Lol x

His daddy and two uncles playing on the wii was the last incident. Set off with that tonto song and some how ended on tina turners proud mary where he almost jumped off my knee. Honestly the funniest thing ever seen. Keep trying to get a vid as he wiggles so much, is so funny no one can do it for laughing x

Lol! Aw how cute!! x

Prime example... CarolineDarz was adv by nhs "They said grabbing for food, sucking things is not a sign their ready- as that is developmentally normal skill to learn" nct advise "If he grabs some food off your plate and eats it then he is ready even if that's before 6 months" what's the difference between grabbing food and grabbing it off a plate?!? ..CONFUSED.COM!!!!

Hi, sorry to hear you're little guy isn't well. You're right, breast milk is the best thing for him at the moment, he'll get all he needs from you.

If you are thinking of starting any solids before 6 months you need to talk to a Dr or health visitor first. There are lots of reasons they recommend 6 months, but one is that baby's gut hadn't sealed until around then. He will have gaps between his gut lining cells to allow the good stuff from breast milk in. So giving him normal food can allow in things that shouldn't get through.

Here's the NHS leaflet on signs baby is ready and other info (PDF) google.co.uk/url?sa=t&sourc...

This is also a useful article kellymom.com/ages/older-inf...

Also it is a myth that babies will start sleeping better when introducing solids. Often the opposite is true as their stomach tries to adjust to the new way it needs to work, residually before 6 months.

Good luck. My advice is don't have high expectations when you do introduce solids. He may have half a spoon and refuse any more, and not have more than a few spoons a day for weeks. His primary source of nutrition is still breastmilk.

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