Is Your Baby Ready For Solids? Here Are Some Developmental Signs To Look Out For

Aug 3, 2021 | Babies/Toddlers, Nutrition

Before your precious little one start solids you want to make sure they are developmentally ready. Introducing solids too early when their digestive system isn’t matured yet could result in digestive issues such as constipation, gas/wind, eczema, fermenting of foods in the colon and even allergies.⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
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Here are some signs to look out for:⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
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1) They are interested on food – opening their mouth if you were to feed them, reaching out for food, watching you eat. This can happen around the 4/5 month mark and many people assume as soon as they interested in food they are ready. This isn’t the case, you must look out the other signs as well.⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
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2) They lose their tongue thrust reflex – this is when they no longer push food out of their mouth with their tongue. This is an important reflux babies have to prevent themselves from chocking on anything they put in their mouth from 0-6 months.⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
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3) They can sit up on their own unassisted – (not leaning against the back of a high chair, or with pillows holding them up or you holding them up). This is when their digestive muscles are strong and they have developed core strength to help food through their digestive tract.⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
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4) They need to have strong head and neck control.
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Also, make sure they are sitting in a 90-90-90 position, it’s the most optimal for feeding with their feet flat on a board, not dangling down.
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Starting solids is a fun and exciting time. However, the importance of starting solids is to provide your baby with critical nutrients for their development they can no longer get in adequate amounts from breastmilk or formula alone, and also to set them up for good health long term and to heal their gut, as babies are born with leaky gut. It’s not about filling them up or trying to get your baby to sleep. Many sleep consultants recommend babies starting solids far too early to “help” get babies to sleep through the night. There is no research that starting solids will help a baby sleep better. I personally know of many babies (including mine) that started solids and it had no impact on their sleep. Our sleep consultant recommend I start solids when my baby was just over 5 months old, I politely had to say to her that I’m not comfortable giving him solids yet when he’s not developmentally ready. He wasn’t able to sit up on his own completely unassisted, he was very interested in food, had good head control, tongue thrust reflux was still there, but my little man would fall if I tried to make him sit by myself without my help or cushions around him. I didn’t want to interfere with his gut development and overall health, she respected it even thought she said “he was a big boy and needs more food”, but we worked around it together until he was developmentally ready. Remember, sleep consultants are sleep consultants, they are not health experts or trained in nutrition. So stick to your guns, there is no need to rush your baby for solids, it may end up affecting their health negatively. 

Hi I’m Natalie, a Registered Clinical Nutritionist, health influencer, blog writer & recipe creator. My own health complications prompted me to make positive diet & lifestyle changes, revitalize my health leading to a career change from the corporate world to nutritional medicine. I believe in a wholefoods approach to good health, focusing on simple strategies for modern, busy people. 

Let's connect @nataliebradynutrition 

The information on this website is not intended to replace the advice of your GP, a one on one relationship with a qualified health care professional and is not intended as medical advice. It is not intended for self-diagnosis, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. I encourage you to make your own health care decisions based upon research and in partnership with a qualified healthcare professional. The entire content of this website is based on the opinions of Natalie Brady, a qualified Holistic Nutritionist, unless otherwise noted. Click here for term and conditions of services.

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