Usually, parents do not know what to do when starting introducing solids. Here are the steps I followed:
- First of all, I documented extensively. I read the book by Gill Rapley and Tracey Murkett, Baby-led Weaning: Helping Your Baby to Love Good Food. The book gave me the courage to start BLW so, when baby turned 6 months, after being sure the he is ready, I began with one meal a day, lunch time, usually when we, the parents, ate too.
- I breastfeed him 40 minutes before, otherwise he may have been too hungry to have the patience to eat alone. At first babies do not know that hunger goes away if you eat solid food so they are not interested in eating. Usually at the beginning they will play with the food. Give them time and they will learn that eating solids makes them full. I also made sure that he was rested and in a good mood. Don’t try to make baby eat when she’s crying or upset.
- Once baby washed her hands, I put her at the table in his seat or hold him, taking care to sit in an upright position, not tilted to avoid the risk of choking.
- I usually offered him 2 types of cooked vegetables, cut strips or finger shaped, so that they are easy to grasp and manage.
- I watch him carefully but not intervening. I let him take every piece of food and decide what he wants to do with it. Some went in the mouth, some were spat out, some swallowed, most of the times without being chewed. Much of the food is left on the table or on the floor. I did not stress about the quantity he ate.
- When he became fussy or to show signs of fatigue / boredom, we stopped the eating and continued our daily routine.