When is the right time to start with complementary feeding?
When is the right time to start the addition of complementary feeding to the milk meal? What signals should you take note on when you should start the introduction of complementary foods?
The introduction of complementary food is a milestone in your child’s diet. Complementary feeding includes all food to ensure that the baby gets adequate nutrients in the first year of life – Eg. fruits, vegetables, potatoes, bread, meat and fish. Your baby is introduced to “normal” food and learns to eat from a spoon and drink from a cup at this stage.
When should you start with complementary feeding?
Your child will require more nutrients like iron for growth. Complementary feeding comes in place here.
Your baby will have a jump in the required amount of nutrients and energy for development from about 6 months of age.
The nutritional needs of your child will increase as he grow, therefore you should start to introduce complementary feeding after the 6th month of life to meet the energy and nutrient requirements of your baby. Micro and macro nutrient needs jump, in particular the iron requirement, therefore introduction of complementary feeding is very important to meet that requirement from food.
When should I start with complementary feeding?
Watch your baby to recognize the right moments to start complementary feeding.
Your child drools heavily and is increasingly sucking on his fingers and shows interest in food.
Your baby is fussing at the milk meals and meals are no longer fed properly, demanding for more than just milk?
Time frame between milk meals are getting shorter?
These are signs that you can now start with the solid food. Pay close attention to the signs given from your baby. It will show clearly when it starts to require additional nutrients to be full and satisfied.
Your baby can tell when it is the right time for complementary feeding
Important note: Supplementary feeding of complementary food does not mean the end of milk consumption. It should continue to receive its milk meals even if your baby is already fed with the complementary food or introduced to the spoon and cup diet.
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