I have never read BLW, or called it that. We just gave our kids food when they reached out for it. DS's first food was a stalked of steamed broccoli that he grabbed from my plate and started gnawing on. We tried purees after that thinking, that's what babies need, but within a month or two he threw the spoon across the room and refused to be fed again. It was messy as all get out, but the rule was a always has been:
Bigger than my finger or smaller than a pea.
And stay close, when the bigger pieces get gnawed or gummed down to too small (but not small enough) I take them away or break them up smaller.
Originally Posted by Snapdragon
I still don't understand WHY people choose to do BLW over purees though. From recent experience of giving purees, I can only think it is becuase feeding them purees can cause them to eat more than they are actually ready for? Is this why people choose to do BLW. Even though all the things you guys are saying make total sense logically, I just don't think I would be comfortable with any gagging or anything like that! I don't think I am gonna do that- but I was just curious today as I was so vigilant about even one piece of pear to suck on and then I read all these posts about people doing BLW and was wondering how people don't feel scared during that!
I feel exactly the opposite. Why in the world would anyone ever feed purees? Babies don't like tham as much as real food, they offer almost no value in terms of experimenting with texture, they tend to set babies up for finnicky food issues in childhood, and they are BORING...you never see curried carrot and cauliflower or Braised ginger eggplant or veggie lentil stew, or mushroom fajitas, or pasta al pesto in a puree form, and babies LOVE learning about textures (that's mostly why they bother eating at all), and flavors have so much appeal at this age.
Furthermore, purees if you are doing them on your own require more dirty dishes and equipment (baby food mashers, or cuisinearts, baby food dishes, spoons that get lost mid meal, etc etc etc) and make just as big a mess IME. I'd just assume give DD a slice of pear and let her have at it.
They also don't allow you all to eat together, so baby totally misses out on the social aspect of eating as a family. Either you can eat or they can eat but never both together. With BLW you can. You can SHARE food with baby and it's really a joyful experience rather than a stressful one of hurry up and get the baby to eat so I can eat my meal before it A) gets cold or B) burns on the stove.
Purees are very hard if you want to eat at a restaurant. Some places will do it for you, but then still you're left with the dilemma of who gets to eat first while the baby gets fed and then who gets to bounce the baby while the other one gets to eat a lukewarm or cold meal. BLW weaning means everyone can eat together.
DD tried purees once and the very first meal she grabbed the spoon off me and tried it herself. She now get irrate when anyone tries to feed her. She is fiercly independent and I just don't see the point in trying to have four spoons on the go and getting purees flung at me, the walls, the floors...At least big chunks can be picked up, or shook out from the balcony off the drop cloth. Purees are just so messy.
If you are doing them from the jar BLW is just better because it is more likely to be whole foods, and you know exactly what is in it.
DD has two teeth now, but she started eating on her own before any of her teeth had come in. She managed just fine. So far she has gagged WAY but WAY WAY less than DS ever did.
Originally Posted by Snapdragon
I never thought of it this way. Do you mean that even if I start the baby on chunky food later, that he will still have to go through the gagging thing?
the thing is, he only has one tooth now! So wouldn't it be easier for him to chew and properly swallow when he has more teeth?
Nope. They have very strong jaw muscles.
Originally Posted by mamazee
They really handle it pretty well, but you do have to be prepared to go in with a finger swipe if they have trouble with something, though honestly that's forever and regardless of whether you do BLW. I had to swipe my older dd's mouth because she was having trouble with something when she was like 5 or 6. Just pull something out if it seems like she's having trouble. Eventually she'll know to spit stuff out that's too big and give it to you.
If your baby has a tooth, and is showing signs of being ready to eat give him a bit of real food. A slice of avocado or a half a banana is a great start. These are mushy enough that even the throat muscles can mash them down and pass them past the wind pipe. babies really do appreciate being included in the ritual of the family. It is a natural part of the instinct for socialization. They want to imitate and experiment. Purees, don't offer many chances for those things.