Is your baby pointing and grabbing for the food you are eating? Are you wondering if it is okay to share some of your meal? When children get close to one year old, they are getting ready to expand their tastes.
When your baby reaches 9-12 months, he may be ready to: Use his fingers to eatReach for a spoonHold a cupEat soft table food
To help your child get accustomed to eating table foods, remember the following:
When your baby is eating, have a quiet and calm atmosphere.When you give your baby table food, be sure that it is easy for him to chew. Avoid foods that can cause choking.Constantly supervise your baby when he is eating.Give your baby healthy foods. Your baby has a small stomach, so it is easy for him to become full on junk food.Encourage your baby to drink water. Avoid giving your baby soda, fruit punch, and other sugary drinks, tea, or coffee.
The South Dakota Department of Public Health offers these guidelines:
|Food||9-10 Months||11-12 Months|
or iron-fortified formula
Do not give cow's milk until age one.
| 3-4 feedings or on demand24-32 ounces total per day|| 3-4 feedings or on demand24-32 ounces total per day|
Infant juice (100% fruit juice)
8 tablespoons or ½ cup
8 tablespoons or ½ cup
8 tablespoons or 2 ounces or ½ cup
Continue to give infant cereal until your baby is aged 12 months old. Small amounts of other types of food can be mixed in with the cereal.For finger foods, give your baby soft, cooked food that is cut into bite-sized pieces.Do not add sugar or syrups to your baby's food.
You can give your baby pureed meat or finely chopped meat. Other options include cooked egg, cheese, yogurt, or mashed beans. Avoid giving your baby: Fried meats, gravies, and saucesProcessed meats (eg, hot dogs, luncheon meats, bacon, sausage)
Choose plain fruits and vegetables. You do not have to add any seasonings or sugar to your baby's food. When serving veggies, cook them until they are soft and offer bite-sized pieces. Cut the fruit, as well, and take out the seeds and pits.
Remember, too, not to give your baby honey. It can contain botulism spores.
Serve liquids in a cup rather than a bottle. Your baby should still be drinking breast milk or iron fortified formula. Water is a healthy drink for your baby at this age. Do not give your baby cola, fruit punch, or other sugary drinks. Also avoid from giving your baby coffee and tea. Limit 100% fruit juice to less than 4 ounces daily.
Choking is a major cause of fatal injury in infants. It can occur anytime, anywhere.
The South Dakota Department of Public Health offers these guidelines to prevent choking: Wait until your baby is ready before giving him solid food.Give small portions.Encourage your baby to eat slowly.Be aware of the atmosphere during mealtime. It should be calm and quiet.Always be with your baby when he eats. Keep a close watch on him.Avoid propping up your baby's bottle.Check the hole in the bottle nipple. The hole should not be too large.Feed your baby when he is interested in eating. If your baby is moving around, crying, lying down, or playing, wait before giving him food.Make sure that the food you are giving your baby is the right size and shape for him. For example, the food should not be too large, too slippery, or too tough to chew.
Be aware of foods that can cause choking, such as: Tough meatHard candyPopcorn, nuts, or seedsHot dogs or sausagesMarshmallowsPotato chips, corn chips, and other types of chipsLarge chunks of cheeseWhole kernel cornChewing gumRaisins or other dried fruitsFruit pieces that are hard or have pitsWhole fruits that are round, like grapesCherries, berriesWhole canned fruitRaw vegetable piecesFish or meat with bones
Learn how to give
NHLBI integrated guidelines for pediatric cardiovascular risk reduction. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at:http://www.ebscohost.com/dynamed/. Updated February 28, 2012. Accessed July 12, 2012.
Last reviewed July 2012 by Brian Randall, MD
Please be aware that this information is provided to supplement the care provided by your physician. It is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. CALL YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER IMMEDIATELY IF YOU THINK YOU MAY HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.
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