Best first foods for your baby

Which solids are best suited to tiny taste buds?

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Nutritionist, Helen Riley offers advice to help get your little one exploring new foods and flavours.

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‘Peeled, cooked and mashed apples and pears are popular first foods, as their natural sweetness appeals to babies’ taste buds,’ says Helen Riley, nutrition scientist at the British Nutrition Foundation.

‘Mashed white or sweet potato also goes down well. Baby rice is good, too, and easily mixed with puréed fruit or mashed banana.

As you progress, potatoes mixed with other veg, such as carrots and broccoli, will expose your baby to a variety of flavours. And try puréed meat for a good source of iron.

‘Introduce one new food every few days. This way, if your baby has a reaction to it, such as a rash, swelling or diarrhoea, you’ll have a better idea of which food caused it – food allergies are rare, but if this happens, you should consult your GP.

Remember, giving your baby a variety of foods from the beginning will help establish good eating habits and may mean he’s less likely to be a fussy eater when he’s older.’

‘Avoid adding salt and sugar to your baby’s food. He doesn’t need it, while sugary foods may encourage a sweet tooth.

Food No Nos

NEVER add salt to his food before the age of 1, as it puts his kidneys under too much strain.

DON’T give him honey before the age of 1 either, as it can cause severe food poisoning in babies.

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AVOID sugary foods as these upset the balance of bacteria in your baby’s gut, which he needs to digest food.

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