Is your tot is ready for her first taste of solids? Look out for these tell-tale signs
Weaning is a big step in your baby's life and it's one that needs to take place at the right time. Too early and her immune system isn't mature enough but too late and milk alone will fall short in giving her enough nutrients, particularly iron.
The guidelines on when to wean have changed over time. In recent years, the Department of Health has recommended that you start weaning at 6 months, as at this stage, your baby's immune system, digestion and muscle control are all developing well. New research has now suggested that it may be healthier to start weaning from four months, but so far, the Government has yet to revise its guidelines.
Some babies develop and mature more quickly and may be ready to start weaning earlier than six months. If you feel your baby is ready at an earlier stage (but no earlier than 4 months) talk it through with your health visitor or GP. If your baby was born prematurely you may need to check with your health visitor as to the right time to start.
It's not a race, even if everyone else's baby seems to have got there first. It's much better to wait until your baby is ready (but don't start later than six months).
Starting solids brings a whole new routine, so be prepared before you begin. Not sure where to start or worried about any weaning problems you might encounter? Our week-by-week weaning meal planner will take you through the first four weeks.
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