Over many years the theory on when the right age to introduce solids is, has been debated. The advice has varied over the last 60 years from 2 weeks old to 6 months and even older.
There are two ways to approach this question:
- Understanding science and research
- Knowing your own baby
The current evidence in research points to the following:
- Do not introduce any solids into your baby’s diet before 17 weeks unless advised to by a medical doctor.
- Preferably breastfeed your baby for at least 6 months.
- Do not delay the introduction of solids too long after 6 months as allergy risk as well as fussy eating can result from very late introduction of solids.
- It is safe from an allergy perspective to introduce solids between 17 weeks and 6 months of age.
With the facts in mind, turn your attention to your baby. Introduce solids between the window of 17 weeks and 6 months, once your baby shows he needs and is ready for solids:
- No longer displays a tongue thrust reflex that pushes food from his mouth.
- Can hold up his head and sits supported in a chair
- Is no longer stretching between feeds and is demanding another feed in the day.
- Interest in your eating and reaching for your food or utensils when you are eating.
- Not sleeping as well at night as he was previously.
Once you have weighed this up, discuss it further with your clinic sister who knows your baby best from a health perspective.