Top advice for weaning onto solid foods
Weaning is an exciting time but for some parents it can be challenging . Joanna Bounds introduces her top tips to help the transition
Tips for weaning onto solids

1. Breast pads

During the weaning process it is likely your breasts will become engorged. Even if you haven't experienced leaking for some time, it may start again. 

2. Mastitis

While you are weaning, check your breasts regualrly for lumps. Try massaging the lumps or expressing a small amount of milk to reduce the lumpiness. If any lump is persistent or painful, see your doctor.

3. Cuddles

extra cuddles and spending a lot of time with your baby during the weaning process can help them feel secure and loved.

4. Don't forget you!

It’s quite common to feel a bit down after your last breastfeed, even if you were looking forward to weaning. So be sure to nurture yourself as well as your baby during weaning.

5. Don’t disappear

Wean gradually and not by desertion (such as going on holiday without your baby).

6. Keep up the milk

When weaning onto solids, it’s recommended that your child continue to have three or four breast or formula milk drinks per day, or if over 12-months-old, a full cream dairy equivalent.

7. Offer solid foods at milk feeding intervals

When weaning on to solids, offer them between milk feeds, when your baby is neither too hungry nor too full.

8. It’s all about texture

A baby’s first taste of solids should be smooth in texture and the spoon should be small, shallow and soft.

9. Keep first food bland

Babies are born with around three times as many tastebuds as adults, which means there’s no need to add salt or sugar to their first solid foods.

10. Storing baby food

Always store prepared baby food in covered containers at the back of the fridge. Never store formula in the door, as it will be difficult to keep it at the required temperature to keep bacteria at bay.

 

This article was written by Joanna Bounds and adapted for Kidspot, New Zealand's favourite parenting resource for Early Life Nutrition.
 
Breastfeeding is best for babies and provides many benefits. Combined breast and bottle feeding in the first weeks of life may reduce the supply of your own breast milk. Always consult your doctor, midwife or health care professional for advice about feeding your baby. This post is part of the Early Life Nutrition story.
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