Making it easy for baby
• Pick a time of day when your baby is happy, wide awake, and you do not feel rushed.
• Let them explore the feel and aroma of each new food in their hands. This is both fun and messy.
• Start with a few teaspoons and one kind of food at a time 3 times a day. As the baby learns to eat well, then you may gradually increase feedings.
• Feed from a familiar, colorful bowl with a baby spoon, not from the jar, tub, or pouch.
• Be patient when introducing new food and don’t worry if they do not want to eat very much. This is a time for him to explore new tastes and textures. If your child seems to refuse the food, try again in a few days. Observe and respond appropriately to your child’s hunger and satiety cues.
Making it easy for you
• Spread a large towel or old sheet under the high chair. Spills land on the cover, not the floor, making cleanup a breeze.
• Keep a roll of paper towels handy for spills.
• Keep your sense of humor and enjoy watching them make some tasty discoveries.
Helping baby discover new tastes
Early exposure to different flavors also enhances food acceptance.
• Which to serve first—fruit or veggie? No hard rule applies, so do what feels right for you and your baby. Examples of fruits that you can give are orange, banana, apple, papaya, peach, and mango. For vegetables, you may offer green leafy vegetables such as malunggay and spinach, broccoli, zucchini, carrots, and squash. It can take up to 10 tries with a new food before they decide to give it a go.
• Growth spurts will determine their hunger. Don’t insist on them finishing the bowl, but let their fullness be the guide.
• Offer a wide variety of nutrient-dense food so they can experience different tastes. This may help them to be more accepting of new foods.
Trying new baby foods
Don’t give up on giving veggies!
• So let's talk numbers. Don’t worry if the baby refuses certain foods. This is normal and you may need to reintroduce the food several times until they get to like it. In one study research found that over 70% of babies, aged 6 to 10 months, accepted previously disliked vegetables when they were offered at least 8 times. Parents tend to give up earlier than that and often only offer disliked foods 3 times.
• When introducing a new kind of food to your baby, continue to offer the less-liked food, even after they have rejected them. It may take up to 10 tries, but eventually they will become familiar foods and your little one just may grow to love them.
Be a healthy role model
Early feeding experience is positively influenced by a conducive food environment that is secure, happy, and pleasant.
Your baby’s taste preference, in many ways, will be a reflection of how the whole family eats. When introducing new food to your baby, keep in mind that he’s watching your facial expressions as you take a bite and gets the idea if something is yummy or not. Making meals a positive experience is also important to developing healthy eating habits, and leaving spinach on your plate with a negative expression can send the wrong message.
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