Baby led weaning/baby led solids
We were interested in this way of introducing foods as it promotes breastfeeding as the main source of nutrition for the first year. Which, it should be. I have lost count of how many times people have asked me "how long do you have to breastfeed him for?" and it is mostly curiosity from friends who haven't seen littlies raised, I am always confident in my response. The WHO recommends breastfeeding for at LEAST two years and the benefits of extended breastfeeding are becoming common knowledge.
So, the other thing that drew me towards providing finger foods was that it allows the infant to learn hunger and satiety cues. I have struggled with eating issues in my life and the very last thing I want to do is to lead my children down the same path. DS eats what he wants to and he LOVES quinoa, tofu, green veg and berries. In the morning I give him fingers of quinoa flakes with stewed fruit (baked in the oven so he can hold on and gnaw on them), for lunch we usually have cucumber, carrot, mushroom and tomato, though tahini paste/hommus on rice crackers is becoming a hit. Dinner is vegies sometimes mashed, rolled in polenta and baked, sometimes pasta sauce, often tofu or lentils included.
Other benefits of BLW have been the rapid development of his motor skills; fine and gross. He can sit unassisted for short bouts of time, can pick up a pea between his finger and thumb, and has great hand/eye co-ord which he did NOT get from me :)
To answer some other questions I am always asked; yes DS is vegetarian until he decides otherwise, he wont have wheat until 8-9months of age, he wont have dairy until after 12months, and I will not provide any artificial colours, preservatives etc to him where I can avoid it. When DS goes to school, he will be exposed to all kinds of food and I do not believe in denying him anything, just teaching moderation. Until then I would like to keep his innocent system "crap free".
I have heard that there is a fantastic cookbook I would love to get my mits on, but for the moment he just has what I have, minus wheat, dairy and whole nuts. We dont eat much processed food at home which is good for everyone because lord knows I have developed a sweet tooth since late in my pregnancy!
Conceiving a child and breastfeeding have definitely made me consider what I put into my body. Starting him on solids has been a great process and because I control what goes in front of him, he hasn't been exposed to artificial/processed crap. We are both healthier for this.
If there is anything you would like to know, feel free to ask.
Cheers & Giggles
PS things HAVE improved since my last post. DH got home yesterday, I am not the only one finding that my 6.5mo is a testy pain in the butt (thanks mum's group), and I know it will eventually pass :)