(Scroll down for healthy eating tips)
All babies are different. Remember that your baby is a blank slate. What you introduce to her now will influence her likes and dislikes as a future eater. Therefore I highly recommend using REAL food sources, WHOLE grains, and VARYING tastes and textures. While I can provide the basic guidelines, this is in no way the only ‘right answer.’ It’s recommended to start feeding your baby at 6 months of age, however some people choose to start at 4 months. If you are starting at this time, be sure to only feed baby foods easy on her stomach and easily digestible. Baby will actually be eating very little and just getting used to spoon feeding and new textures. If your baby is handling foods well at 4-5 months, you will simply carry on in at a slower rate. Make new combinations with foods that are already tolerated well. Be sure to use the 3 Day Wait Rule.
For a full pdf of Nurture Naturally’s Feeding Guide, please request at NurtureNaturallyPE@gmail.com
First Foods Menu
OPTIONS: There are fruits suitable for early eaters, however I strongly recommend to wait on fruits until all veggies are introduced. Fruits suitable include: banana, mango, pears
Continuing Foods, 7+ Months
Cooked Egg Yolk
Strawberries (if no allergies in the family)
OPTIONS: While some people encourage instant cereal from 4 months, I recommend waiting until 6 months and using REAL Ground Grains. Oats and Millet are the easiest on baby’s tummy. The reason for grinding the grains is not a texture issue, but to aid in digestion. Once baby is handling Oats and Millet, introduce Quinoa. Brown Rice, barley, Spelt can all be used. Grinding lentils, dried beans, flax seed, etc. all use the same basic cooking instructions (see Ground Grains page for more details and ideas). If baby is handling ground grains fine, you can start cooking them whole at around 10+ months. Use lots of extra water and over-cook. Some people recommend holding off on grains completely until age 1. Whatever your choice, do try to choose a Real, Whole Food Source.
Later Foods (8+ months)
ground dried beans (cooked)
chicken, beef, lamb, fish
If you appreciate a good stew in the winter, your baby may too! Easy one-pot stove top meals are simple to prepare for baby. No salt or processed seasoning is needed. Instead look to introducing these amazing flavors as healthy extras in any of your pureed, mashed or early eater meals:
nutmeg (small amount)
fresh basil, coriander, parsley
freshly ground flax
Off You Go!
By 9-10 months, you will have a good idea of your baby’s eating habits. Using the 3-day wait rule, continue adding new flavors and combinations of fruits and veggies.
Preparing Your Own Baby Food
For a FREE consultation on tips and recipes and equipment for making your own baby food, please contact me. I love helping moms make their own food. I do remember time being a bit limited, and I did make some pretty ‘awesome’ mistakes, so I like to help others get started. I also recommend a bit of “backup” for your freezers…just in case.
Preparing Nurture Naturally Baby Food
It is recommended to keep Nurture Naturally Baby Food frozen until the day before needed. At that time, place what you predict you will need in the refrigerator to allow it to thaw slowly. Our preferred method of heating food for baby (if necessary) is to heat water in a kettle and then set a heat-safe container of baby’s food in the water until warm. This is recommended for any food, including store-bought jarred food.
Healthy Eaters Stem from Healthy Beginnings
(tips to ensure healthy nutrition)
- Introduce 1 new food every 3 days to make sure baby can handle the digestion and has no allergies to the food.
- If baby doesn’t like a food the first day, try again the next few days. Feed the new food first when she is hungriest. What baby doesn’t like this month, she may love next month.
- Humans have an innate taste for sweet (fruit), but savory (vegetables) must be developed; it is therefore advisable to start with vegetables before introducing fruits.
- Babies must be introduced to various grains, textures, and tastes to ensure a healthy transition into toddler and childhood. Many mass-produced baby foods taste the same and are bland with little texture (many are stripped of nutrients during this process as well).
- What baby doesn’t finish, Mamma should! Your nutrition counts too. If you have left-over Nurture Naturally baby food that is at the end of its use-time, finish it yourself or toss into your favorite sauces or mixes—no one will ever know!
- Nurture Naturally Grains may appear expensive compared to instant shelf brands. Remember that these are whole foods and are much more dense. They also offer much more natural nutrients and haven’t been stripped of their vitamins. Instant shelf grains boast ‘vitamin fortified’ but that is because they’ve been stripped of natural nutrients and those added back cannot be absorbed properly by baby. Also most are full of artificial fillers, flavours, sugars…resulting in baby becoming addicted to sugar at a young age—a predictor of many future health problems. Natural Grains are a MUST for baby’s health.
- Our preferred method of heating food for baby (if necessary) is to heat water in a kettle and then set a heat-safe container of baby’s food in the water until warm. This is recommended for any food, including store-bought jarred food. Our eco-friendly containers are NOT MICROWAVE SAFE.
- WARNING: Do not introduce baby to any sauces or sweets that are not age appropriate or will not help her nutritionally. Things such as tomato sauce, syrup, suckers, salad dressings, salt, seasonings, etc. are not necessary at this early age and tend to hinder her yearning for new tastes.
- Water, water, water. Juice is not necessary for nutritional development and is often chock-full of sugar and artificial ingredients. Remember, baby’s development for sweet will come naturally; there is no need to push it. If your baby is eating a variety of foods from Nurture Naturally, the best for her to drink is breast milk and water. If your baby is already accustomed to juice, slowly begin to dilute it more and more to water until her need is gone.
*Please discuss your feeding plan with your pediatrician. Be sure to use the 3 Day Wait Rule for introducing new foods.