Baby’s first foods

Our ParentCraft educator’s handy guide on the basics of weaning

Weaning is the introduction of solid food to a baby’s diet. The World Health Organization and Singapore’s Health Promotion Board recommend to fully breastfeed your baby for the first six months, and to introduce solid foods thereafter to meet your baby’s nutritional needs (especially iron).

What are some signs that my baby is ready for solid foods?

  • Able to hold head up and maintain a steady upright position
  • Can sit well when supported, like sitting in a high chair
  • Interested in reaching out to try your food
  • Tongue thrust reflex has disappeared
  • Can move food from the front of the mouth to the back and swallow
  • Still looks hungry after a good milk feed, or cries for feeds earlier than scheduled time
  • Has good coordination and able to grab the food and put it into mouth

What should I take note of when feeding my baby?

  • Strict hand washing before handling baby’s food
  • Always fully cook meat, reheat food to full boil and check temperature of food before giving to baby
  • Discard unfinished food. Portion food and keep in the fridge if you prepare more than one meal
  • Always supervise baby during feeding time
  • Avoid food that might cause choking such as nuts, raisins, raw carrots, fishballs, grapes and candies. Always remove fish bones and check thoroughly before feeding
  • Provide baby with a spoon, but not a fork to avoid accidents

Weaning at 6–7 months

The consistency of prepared food should be just slightly thicker than milk to start with, gradually thickening consistency as your baby progresses. Start with one to two spoons, slowly increasing it to one full feed, then to two feeds per day. Introduce one new solid food at a time for two to three days to observe if there are any allergic reactions such as rashes, bloated or gassy tummy, diarrhoea or fussiness after eating.

Foods to start with

  1. Baby rice cereal mixed with expressed breast milk or baby formula
  2. Slowly progress to add soft foods like mashed pasta or porridge
  3. Mashed or finely chopped cooked vegetables such as carrots, potato, sweet potato, pumpkin, broccoli or spinach
  4. Finely minced and soft cooked meat, beancurd or mashed fish (with all bones removed)
  5. Soft ripe fruits suchas banana, apple, papaya, avocado or pear
  6. Yoghurt and custard

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