What’s happening this fortnight
Weaning your baby is likely to be an experience that’s full of highs and lows. For every time your tot devours your lovingly prepared puree with a big smile on his face, there’s likely to be another occasion when he refuses to even open his mouth. Some babies can’t get enough fruit, but will spit a vegetable puree across the room with impressive range. Others will drink their bodyweight in milk, but won’t entertain the idea of solids.
These problems and others are common during the weaning stage, but don’t be disheartened. This is a big learning curve for your baby, and it can take around 15 attempts before he’ll accept a new taste or texture. Just remember that your attitude towards weaning will shape his experience, so grit your teeth, slap on a smile, and if all else fails, take the bowl away and give him his milk instead – it’s still his main source of nutrition and calories. After all, tomorrow is another day…
Did you know…?
To help your baby develop a broad and healthy appetite and avoid fussiness, you should aim to introduce a new taste virtually every day at this stage.
What to watch out for
At this stage, you’re likely to be introducing lots of new purees to your baby. Home-cooked food is great for your newly weaned tot – it’s cheap, nutritious and you know exactly what goes into it – but it’s essential to follow a strict hygiene code when you’re cooking for your little one. Tiny tummies are more susceptible than ours to food-related bugs, and gastroenteritis is one of the main causes of hospital admission among young babies.
Keeping your kitchen germ-free will help protect your baby from food poisoning, so make sure all your cooking and feeding equipment is properly cleaned in a dishwasher or steriliser or with hot soapy water. Make sure all food is thoroughly heated before serving it to your baby, and if you’re batch-cooking, do a regular check of the freezer to ensure that you haven’t exceeded the safe storage times for frozen baby food.