My 4 month old wants FOOD...now what? - Mothering Forums

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Old 10-07-2009, 02:57 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I've not dealt with this before as DD1 was content to wait till she was 6 months old before demanding my food. DD2 is 4 months and in the past few days/week has shown a huge interest in what we are doing when we are eating or drinking. She lunges for my tea and knows to put her mouth on the glass/mug and does the same with my plate. I gave her a sippy last night with a tiny bit of water, but then switched it for BM to see what she would do with it. She managed to get some BM out, but thought it was a bit strange since I was right there cooking dinner. I did let her taste my applesauce last night and this afternoon. She really seems to like it and grabbed for the spoon and put it in her mouth herself. She had just nursed, so I know it's not out of hunger. She has none of the developmental milestones that say she's ready, but she thinks she is. Any advice?

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Old 10-07-2009, 04:53 PM
 
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I think you will find that your 4mo is equally interested in EVERYTHING you do. A 4mo's digestive system is not equipped for food yet. I know my 4mo grabs for everything! Hair, brush, earrings, fingers, toys, (food, utensils) etc etc and brings anything he can get is hands on to his mouth. Just pointing out it isn't food specific, so don't let grabbing for food be your sole guide. We're waiting until at least 6 months, perhaps 7.

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Old 10-07-2009, 05:15 PM
 
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I think you will find that your 4mo is equally interested in EVERYTHING you do. A 4mo's digestive system is not equipped for food yet. I know my 4mo grabs for everything! Hair, brush, earrings, fingers, toys, (food, utensils) etc etc and brings anything he can get is hands on to his mouth. Just pointing out it isn't food specific, so don't let grabbing for food be your sole guide. We're waiting until at least 6 months, perhaps 7.
Yea that. Definitely let her play with cups, spoons, etc and nothing wrong with letting her have some BM in a sippy but I'd hold off with food until at least 6 months and more readiness signs as well.

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Old 10-07-2009, 05:16 PM
 
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so many contradicting stories, only one answer: it's your child. if she likes applesauce, it won't hurt her.

my doctor said purees are fine at four months.
my mother gave me purees at two months.

i didn't follow one or the other, rather, i just followed my baby. my son enjoys food, too, since four months. i only recently started giving him things to bite on at dinner, however, on a regular basis.

it's totally up to you and your baby.

just keep in mind that if you give her a knife to play with, she'll take it.
use common sense, you'll be fine.

and have fun!

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Old 10-08-2009, 01:01 AM
 
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My son was the same way around 4 and a half months, and I gave him baby spoons to play with or let him "drink" water out of my cup (really he was just interested in licking the glass, but it kept him occupied). I would wait to really start solids, although I do let my son taste food here and there, especially if we're out at a restaurant (only fruits so far). But do what you feel is best for your baby.

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Old 10-08-2009, 01:36 AM
 
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Nancy - but it might hurt...

Its an open/closed gut thing - all 6month old guts will be closed by 6months..might his be closed at 4..yes...but why not wait until you know for sure...its not something you can actually. She guidelines for solids should include a closed gut as well as pincer grasp, loss of reflex...etc..

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Old 10-08-2009, 02:09 AM
 
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BM in a sippy is a great idea. Your baby wants to be like you but most likely is not ready for solid foods just yet.
When my son started showing a strong interest in our mealtime activities, we got him a high chair (he was sitting well around 4.5 months). He enjoyed sitting there or in our laps at meals and playing with a spoon or cup or bowl (we use correll). You can also try a BM ice cube. That can be fun.
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Old 10-08-2009, 02:10 AM
 
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My DD did the same thing.. extremely interested in everything I ate. I made yogurt from breast milk and fed her that. She loved it! And I didn't feel funny giving it to her.

I also let her taste things, dipping the tip of my finger in whatever I was eating and letting her suck on it. She liked everything, lol. Still does.

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Old 10-08-2009, 02:19 AM
 
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i'd be afraid it was too soon , so many different opinions out there though

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Old 10-08-2009, 05:27 PM
 
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My LO shows all the signs. Not only is she grabbing for my food, but she sits up by herself and has 2 teeth and I love everything about baby food. (I just think it's alot of fun.) But, I'm waiting till she's 6 months.

The way I heard it best is: It probably won't hurt to start solids early, but it definitely doesn't help anything earlier.

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Old 10-08-2009, 05:59 PM
 
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Originally Posted by poiyt View Post
Nancy - but it might hurt...

Its an open/closed gut thing - all 6month old guts will be closed by 6months..might his be closed at 4..yes...but why not wait until you know for sure...its not something you can actually. She guidelines for solids should include a closed gut as well as pincer grasp, loss of reflex...etc..
I'm betting that there are 6-month-olds who are "open gut."

You just don't know. That's why you follow baby and use common sense with what you introduce. Without an arthroscope, how do you really know?

And how on earth did I live with not a single allergy or any other developmental ailment after being fed stuff at two months??? :-O

It quite simply all depends on your baby. You have to decide based on your baby. A good guideline is six months for average kids. But I wouldn't be afraid of gentle foods before then. (two months is really silly, btw, and I certainly don't advocate that unless there is some kind of medical reasoning.)

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Old 10-08-2009, 06:06 PM
 
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And, let me add, that Zack was sitting up and grasping at four months. I was comfortable feeding him tiny bits of things and now he's doing great at about 5.5 months. He just happened to be ready to handle it.

I would not feel comfortable doing anything with a baby who isn't showing signs of being able to feed themselves.

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Old 10-08-2009, 08:01 PM
 
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I have a question in regards to feeding "early", as well. I don't mean this snide at all, but "back in the day", meaning the 40's (not sure what was common prior) but mom's were routinely advised to feed homeade baby food at 3-4 months. I have a baby book from the 40's, where breastmilk is advised for the first year, and introducing solids when your baby shows an interest, generally around 4 months. Foods like homeade steel cut oats, millet, barley, fruits, veggies then onto more complex family foods, etc. Here's the question. Why were there such less incidents of food allergies a generation a couple generations ago?

It's one of these things that I think people are scrambling to find the answers to...allergies, ADD, autism, etc. I just wonder what actually we can pin on early introduction of solids? I only say this because I don't know, LOL!

I've always started little tastes of healthy and homeade things at around 4 months...2 of my 5 children couldn't have cared less about anything but milk until nearly a year, and the other 3 have had quite the interest. I think we're the only family I know with no food allergies, so I'm thankful I didn't spark that problem with our little tastes here and there!

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Old 10-08-2009, 08:54 PM
 
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interestingly, both of my brothers have food allergies of some sort, but it's weird things like fish and chicken. neither of which are common allergens like gluten, strawberries, egg, etc.

i really don't think there is a hard and fast rule for this. you have to use your best judgement and not follow guidelines blindly.

i always say: "what did cave-babies do?" and go from there.

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Old 10-08-2009, 09:14 PM
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DD turned 4 months today and she too has been extremely interested in well everything including what DH and I are eating. There has been more than one occasion when she has basically lunged for a cup and knocked it over (mommy being oblivious or it was on the floor).

I am not ready to feed her real food yet but I do let her taste whatever I am eating. Even sour and spicy stuff and it's hilarious because she seems to like the sour and spicy the best.

I was thinking of giving her a sippy in a few weeks with some BM in it but I just really want to EFB for a couple more months. I can't say when I'll start but I know we'll being starting with quinoa.
I don't have any advice to add but you are definitely not the only one with a 4mo who wants to put everything in their mouth!
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Old 10-08-2009, 09:45 PM
 
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DS first grabbed food off my plate and crammed it in his mouth at 3.5 months (a breadstick). I told him sorry, you're going to have to wait, little guy. However, a few weeks after the first food-grabbing attempt, he developed all but one of the signs of readiness- sitting up independently, two bottom teeth, continuing to grab food from my hand or plate and shove it in his mouth at every opportunity, trying to drink from my water glass...

He just turned 5 months last week, and I have started to sit him in the high chair and "officially" let him eat solid food, though not on a daily basis yet. He *loves* to eat. I thought long and hard about it before letting him eat, but my belief is that he wouldn't be insisting so strongly that he wants food if his gut were still open. I like the 'what would cave babies do' comment.
Babies are ready on different timetables.

On the other hand, my DD was not interested much at all until she was 9 months old, even though she did get teeth and start sitting up independently at 4 months just like DS. She grabbed for food at 5-6 months, but would clamp her mouth shut if we offered her a taste, until she was old enough to have the pincer grasp. DS is perfectly happy holding his food between both hands, as long as he can get it to his mouth somehow.

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Old 10-09-2009, 01:36 PM
 
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Obviously, follow your babies lead and your own instinct. I agree with PP's who said that 4 mo's are interested in EVERYTHING you are doing. Doesn't mean their bellies are ready for solid food. If it has to be pureed and spoon-fed, they aren't ready. When they can physically feed themselves (sitting up on their own, pincer grasp, teeth? no tongue thrust, etc), and WILL, more than likely they are ready.

My 13 month old is obsessed with eating paper. Does that mean it is good for him? No. You have to follow their lead and use your own judgement, because they are babies. The research says wait at LEAST 6 months.

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Old 10-09-2009, 04:07 PM
 
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i'm going to start the day before six months just to be different.

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Old 10-09-2009, 04:44 PM
 
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To me, it's not about the "fun" of finally being able to feed your baby something resembling adult food (because sure it is fun, and will eventually become a social thing for your baby), it was about the fact (and yes, the FACT) that nothing I could give my baby was any better for her and then him than my breast milk. I knew that anything I put in my baby's belly would take away from the breast milk they would take in, and to me it just wasn't nutritionally worth it.

The time will come and your baby will grow up, but I say at 4 months just let them be the baby they are and nurse them until they really NEED something else. Personally, my children were both around a year old before I really started introducing food for food's sake, and neither one of them were before 6 or 7 months before I put anything in their mouths other than breast milk or water.

That's just my two cents coming from my mere 3 1/2 years of experience at this Mama thing.

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Old 10-09-2009, 05:13 PM - Thread Starter
 
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After a few more experiences over the past few mealtimes, I think its just teething and the fact that she can now actually grab things. She really loves to grab your glass/mug, but I'm pretty sure it's mainly mimic behavior. I fully intend on waiting till 6 months or so till giving her any real food. I know a taste here and there won't bother her though.

And to the PP who made BM yogurt, how did you do that? I know that she would love that!

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Old 10-09-2009, 10:06 PM
 
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i always say: "what did cave-babies do?" and go from there.
This. DD is four months, and I've been giving her tastes of foods for about two months now. She ate an entire jar of baby food when DP and I were gone for a couple hours last Saturday night.

She's been fine. I just let my instinct guide me. Instinct is SO important when you're a parent. I think it's our most underrated parenting tool!

and good luck!

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Old 10-10-2009, 12:27 AM
 
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i really don't think there is a hard and fast rule for this. you have to use your best judgement and not follow guidelines blindly.

i always say: "what did cave-babies do?" and go from there.
our babies are a day apart!

DS has been stuffing things in his face for about 2 weeks now. Mostly sweet potatoes, and yogurt and apple sauce. He gets food about 2x a week.

I have no worries. He nurses like a horse and it's not like he is eating meals. His poop hasn't changed, and he loves it.

Personally, I think if they open their mouths and look at you like "put it in my face" they are ready for tastes.

I can collect enough sweet potato off his hands and face to keep him entertained for an hour from one little smuge of potato. (no sugar or salt or butter of course)

I'm not saying everyone should feed their kid steaks on their 4th month birthday, and you're a strange-o if you don't. But stealing a bite off your plate isn't going to make them allergic to the world.

I'm crunchy... Like a Dorito.
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Old 10-11-2009, 02:19 AM
 
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And to the PP who made BM yogurt, how did you do that? I know that she would love that!
I used the directions found here: http://messageboards.ivillage.com/iv-ppbreastfeed/?msg=46557.2

Quote:
1. Heat 1 quart of milk to 180-185 degrees (use a candy thermometer) to kill bacteria. You can do this by putting it in a pan, or inside a glass jar set inside a pan, with water surrounding it. Heat slowly & stir often to prevent scorching. Don't boil. Of course, you can do the same with smaller quantities--just reduce the amt. of starter proportionately. The temperatures and times stay the same.

2. Cool the milk to about 110-115 degrees. Add yogurt starter, either powdered commercial yogurt starter (which is what I used--a little more reliable), or 2 Tablespoons of very fresh plain yogurt that contains live, active cultures. Next time you can just use 2 T. of this batch of yogurt as starter, unless you go a long time between batches.

3. Let the yogurt incubate. Basically, this means keep it at 105-112F for 4-12 hours, depending on how tart & thick you want it (it gets tarter and thicker, the longer it incubates.) This is much easier than it sounds--you can put it in a pre-warmed thermos, put it in a jar inside a picnic cooler of water at about 115 degrees (the method I used), wrapped in a towel in a warm oven, in a heating pad wrapped in towels, etc. Any method to keep it warm, and not move it much, will work. In my little picnic cooler, the water would stay warm enough for 6-8 hours if I didn't open the lid. I started with it at almost 120 degrees, and it was generally not down to 105 when it was done.

4. Refrigerate the finished yogurt.
I usually incubate mine for 24 hours, it's thicker and still not very tart. DD loves it and it helps me get rid of all the frozen breastmilk I produced while she was in the NICU.

Good luck!

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Old 10-11-2009, 03:16 AM
 
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hee hee haaaaa

"put it in my face"

awesome.

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