6 Ways to Start The First Food Journey

6 Ways to Start The First Food Journey

Create enjoyable and memorable mealtime experiences for you and your baby.

Starting your baby on solid food can be a little unnerving. You know you can’t exactly serve her a slice of pizza, but is she ready for pasta? What if he hates everything you try to airplane into his mouth?!? Don’t worry. These strategies can help create enjoyable and memorable mealtime experiences for you and your baby.

  • 1

    Learn to read her body language.

    Just because she can’t talk yet, doesn’t mean your baby isn’t great at giving you signals during meals. Once she can hold her head up, she’ll be able to lean forward when she wants more or turn away when she is full. Pay attention to these subtle signs: Studies show that, when parents are more responsive to the cues, their babies are less likely to be picky eaters.

  • 2

    Give her nutritious food.

    The experts used to suggest simple carbohydrates (like rice cereal) as go-to starter foods. That’s no longer the case, because it teaches babies to prefer refined processed foods. Instead, start your baby off with nutrient-rich, flavorful foods like whole grains, fruits and vegetables. This way, your baby will learn to like a wide variety of foods.

  • 3

    Introduce all sorts of flavors and textures.

    Don’t be afraid to introduce your baby to some of the same flavors you love. Sprinkle cinnamon or nutmeg on top of oatmeal, or mix a little cumin with sweet potatoes and quinoa. Playing around with flavors and textures will help expand your baby’s taste buds. Check out some of these flavor combos here.

  • 4

    Encourage him to play with his food.

    It’s not the worst thing if dinner ends with an avocado spa treatment for your baby. Letting your baby feel the texture of a strange new food—and inadvertently make a mess—will help him learn about it before he commits to eating it. And, once he’s able to put food into his mouth, he’ll be able to self-regulate the amount he wants to eat.

  • 5

    Encourage him to play with his food.

    Babies learn from what they see around them. If your little nugget sees you or his older sister eating and enjoying a new food, he might be more willing to give it a try. And don’t plan meals for the rest of the family when he’s napping. Instead, involve him and move his high chair, so he can see what everyone is doing.

For even more advice, check out the Plum Organics Resource Center.