There are so many different commercial brands of baby food on the market today. Commercial Baby Food is available in lots of different forms but in this article we are talking mainly about puree baby food in jars and pouches.
But, another healthier option is homemade baby food. This difference in foods may not seem like a lot, however, it can be significant if you take a closer look.
Commercial baby foods can be simple and more convenient. The baby foods that you buy on the market can have impurities. The ingredient list seems clear enough however, sometimes it is not that simple.
When I was feeding my first son, I found a jar that was very salty. It made me wonder, upon looking I discovered there is at least 10 mg of sodium in a jar of baby food. It turned out that there was so much sodium in this one jar, that the batch was recalled.
Even though commercial baby food is a food, it is factory made and can be recalled like any other item that is mass-produced. It is a good habit to taste every jar before you feed your child.
Learning the different stages of baby solids is very important when you are purchasing commercial baby food. Most commercial baby food companies offer suggestions as to when to start serving your baby foods, and when to change to the next stage.
- Stage 1 suggests beginning around 4 months old.
- Stage 2 suggests changing at around 6 months
- At 8 months, you transfer to a stage three food.
- Finally, around 12 months old you are able to serve them whatever the family is having for dinner.
Homemade Baby Food
The rules for homemade baby food are a bit different from commercially made foods. Homemade food offers you the ability to control what your bub eats. These foods allow you to not only choose when to start them, but also to determine what level of creaminess that your baby can handle.
It is nice to know that there are several different ways to prepare a puree for your baby food. You can prepare homemade baby food by baking, steaming, or even microwaving them. This works wonders for veggies and some fruits. However, not all foods will need to be cooked in order to puree, foods such as banana’s, mango’s, avocado etc.
As you prepare your homemade baby food, you will have the ability to determine how much chunk or texture you wish your baby to eat. Then over time you will be able to gauge how much food your baby needs.
My Feeding Experience
I have had three children and they have all had different food experiences. My first child began commercial foods at about 6 weeks old. The doctor told me that I should follow with stage one foods between 3 and 4 months old. I was also advised to follow the suggestions of the jars about the ages to introduce new foods.
My second child took a different route when it came to baby food. He was my half and half baby. We delayed his food intake because I was nursing. When we decided to include formula we also included baby food. We started with stage one foods and then incorporated several components of our own supper as he showed interest. With him we used to have a grinder on the dinner table, in case he desired to eat a food we were having.
When I had my third child we took on a different approach to feeding. I breastfed her on demand. That means that I had to get to know my baby well enough to know the signs that she was hungry. My third baby decided when she wanted to eat, and then that continued when we started solids. We waited for her to show us the basic signs of being ready to eat.
Everyone will make their own choices when it comes to baby foods, however be sure to listen to your little one. Test the foods before offering them to your bub, for taste and temperature.
Feeding time can be challenging, so any tips or tricks you would like to share below would be greatly appreciated.