Baby-led Weaning (BLW)

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Frankly, I don’t even know exactly when I first learned of Baby-led weaning (BLW). I knew the term very loosely, I knew that it differs from classical spoon fed and sensed that it’s a more natural approach to this stage. When time for introducing solids came, I started looking for more information about it and I knew from the start that it perfectly fits our little one.

What is the difference between Baby-led weaning and Classic spoon fed approach?

BLW allows baby to directly interact with the solid food without being spoon fed by the parent. All you have to do is give hery an opportunity, from the beginning, to manage her own food, under careful supervision, of course, without any intervention by the parent, only if it’s really needed. That means no fruit and vegetable purées. You will serv food silced at finger size (finger food), not very soft, easy to grip. This way, baby will be able to eat by herself, to study, to touch, to smell, to lead the mouth, chew and swallow. Basically parent has no control. The child decides what and how you eat, does it for his own pleasure and not forced by an adult.

I know that most of the parents do not understand how this works. Unfortunately, we usually think that babies are helpless creatures who are unable to understand and do anything by themselves. Just follow your child and see that she actually wants and can perform various tasks, if given the chance.

How you can tell that your baby is ready for BLW?
  • Must have at least 6 months. According to the World Health Organization, babies should be fed breast milk or formula exclusively until 6 months. Introduction to solids does not start before this age.
  • Baby needs to sit by herself. When the baby is able to sit, unsupported, its digestive tube is ready and has the correct position for processing solids. Also the risk of choking is minimal. If baby can not sit you might want to delay introduction of solids. However, until 1 year of age, breast milk or formula should be the main food.
  • Baby brings objects to mouth. At 6 months, babies take many objects to mouth automatically as part of the game of exploration. BLW extends this natural curiosity to discovering food.

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