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When Can Babies Eat Baby Food?

when can babies eat baby food

For the first six months of your baby’s life, your baby will be exclusively drinking formula or breastmilk. However, once your baby can hold their head up and sit in a highchair, it may be time to introduce solid foods.

When can babies eat baby food?

Most doctors recommend that breast-fed babies wait until about six months old before they start trying solid foods. However, some babies are ready sooner than that. It’s important to make sure your baby can sit in a high chair and has good head and neck control before you offer them solid foods. These skills don’t develop until they’re around 4-6 months old.

Also, if you try to feed your baby solid foods before they’re ready, they will push the food out of their mouth as quickly as you put it in. This is because of their tongue-thrusting reflex. This reflex goes away by six months, making it easier for your baby to start solid foods.

Besides age, another way you can decide if your baby is ready for solid foods is if they are interested in food, as in watching other people eat and opening their mouth when food approaches. They also need to have oral motor skills to move food into the throat, swallow it, and weigh twice their birth weight or close to it.

At the minimum, you should wait until your baby is four months old before you start feeding them solid foods, even if they show signs of readiness earlier. Babies who start solids earlier than four months old have a high risk for obesity and other problems as they grow. They also may not be coordinated enough to swallow solids, and they may choke on their food or inhale it into their lungs.

In conjunction with solids, your baby can still enjoy breastmilk or formula. The ideal time to wean your baby off formula is at the 12-month mark, so it’s okay if your baby doesn’t start solid foods immediately. Breast-fed babies can nurse for even longer than that, so you can introduce foods to your baby at a gradual pace.

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