Recently I have been doing a lot of reading online about the baby led weaning method. Basically, instead of feeding baby pureed “baby food” you give him large pieces of food that he can “explore” by feeding himself. The idea is to help babies learn to chew, explore food by feeling it with their hands and learning different textures. The food pieces are larger so the baby is kind of gnawing on it rather than trying to eat a smaller piece and possibly choking. This helps encourage him to learn to feed himself, learn to chew and eat different types of foods.
Attempt 1– I got really excited and bought all this food to make: carrots, sweet potato, avocado etc. I cut up the carrots and sweet potatoes and steamed them in my rice maker and let them cool off before giving them to him. Basically what happened was that he grabbed everything but didn’t really understand it was food. Also, the pieces I made were too small and he had a hard time picking up the carrots especially.
Although he showed all the signs of being ready, he didn’t really understand what was going on. Mostly he just wants to eat whatever is on our plates so maybe I should have put some on my plate to show him it was food- except I hate carrots and sweet potatoes so that probably wouldn’t have worked either!
We decided to table the whole idea and try it again in a couple of weeks.
Take 2! Last week Carter was showing signs of really being interested in eating “real food” again so we went ahead and gave him some apple! I cut it into fourths and popped his slice into the microwave for about 8 seconds to make it a little mushy. He loved it! He kept grabbing it and chewing on it and when he got a little piece off he smiled really big! The only downside was that it was hard to hold onto, so I guess next time I need to peel the apple?
He loved the apple and he also tried and loved some cucumber from my salad, but since the piece was smaller I didn’t let him take it completely from my hand. I also let him try some of a pear I was eating. Overall I like the idea of baby led weaning method but giving him those big pieces of food still makes me nervous! I guess soon he will be able to pick up more things and will really want to start trying to eat more “real food” pieces rather than just mushy baby food!
What do you think about baby led weaning? Did you try it or are you trying it now? I’d love to hear your thoughts!
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