The National Parenting Center

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How should solid foods be started?

The Nutrition Committee of the American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that solid foods be started within four and six months of age, and I agree. Introducing solid foods too soon could cause problems such as vomiting, diarrhea, and even food allergies later on. There are a number of signs you can use to help you decide when your baby should start solids. If his birth weight has at least doubled or has reached fifteen pounds, it’s probably time to bring out the feeding spoon. Other signs would be a breast fed baby who requires and demands more and more frequent feedings, oftener than every three hours; a formula fed baby who drinks more than one quart of milk per day; and a baby who seems hungry all the time and is never satisfied. Most babies are ready for solids at around four to five months of age. I would not recommend that any baby be started before three months.

Dr. Alvin Eden is chairman of the department of pediatrics at Wyckoff Heights Hospital in Brooklyn and associate clinical professor of pediatrics at Cornell University Medical Center. Dr. Eden has authored several books including “Positive Parenting” and “Healthy Kids”.

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