4 Month Old Interested and Reaching for Solid Food. What Would You Do? - Mothering Forums
Forum Jump: 
 
Thread Tools
#1 of 17 Old 08-08-2013, 12:49 PM - Thread Starter
 
twilight13's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Posts: 18
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

My 17 week old baby nurses on demand (usually 8-10 times per day) and has always been a great communicator. We practice attachment parenting, so he is often on my lap while I eat. For the last couple weeks he has been following each bite I take with his eyes and reaching out to my plate. Twice now (despite me being very careful) he has gotten some hummus on his hand and quickly into his mouth. Each time he has done this, I quickly wipe off his hand, and push my plate further away. He then lunges toward my plate and makes his noise for hunger. (Rooting head, smacking lips, and "nyaa-NYAA"). 

 

Of course I promptly nurse him then. But I wonder if I should listen and give him a few bites of plain avocado or sweet potato. 

The other thing is I can tell that he is going through a HUGE growth spurt right now and is often still not quite satisfied after nursing. I've started to retake fenugreek and goats rue to help my supply and I'm drinking lots of water/nettle tea. 

 

I feel conflicted and confused. 

 

Side note:
I worked very hard in the first two weeks to get my milk supply up. Baby did loose too much weight (we supplemented with donor breast milk until we finally got him to latch on well at 3 weeks) and since then I've been constantly concerned about him not getting enough food. He is growing well (although not as chubby as some babies). 


- Morgan (23) unschooled since birth reading.gif and owner of small Bookshop. Darling partner fuzmalesling.gif and I live on a beautiful rainy island with our DS babyboy.gif born 4/5/13 nocirc.gif familybed1.gif cd.gif  homebirth.jpg

twilight13 is offline  
#2 of 17 Old 08-12-2013, 08:28 AM
 
popmom's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2013
Posts: 4
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
bump.. I'm interested, we are in same boat! :-)
popmom is offline  
#3 of 17 Old 08-12-2013, 09:30 AM
 
ancoda's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: Round Rock, Texas
Posts: 1,263
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

I am in a similar situation.  My daughter is 19 weeks old and really seems to want our food.   She is olso on what feels like a never ending nursing session.  She is really working to get my supply built up. 

 

As far as getting your supply up a friend gave me a website for some tea that she swears by to increase supply.  It is from https://drinkmamatea.com/ you can request a free sample on her website to see if you like it before you buy.  


oAlisha- eternal companion to mike:, mother to three energetic boys (02):, (05), and (07) and one sweet little girl 3/13.  Two in heaven.7/21/2010, 11/05/2011 mecry.gif.

ancoda is offline  
#4 of 17 Old 08-14-2013, 02:17 AM
 
Nightwish's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Posts: 231
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I would put him down while I eat, or give him a toy to chew on. I'm pretty sure he would be equally satisfied.
I would wait another month or so before offering solids.

ds 9 kid.gif and dd 4 biggrinbounce.gif
Nightwish is offline  
#5 of 17 Old 08-14-2013, 07:04 AM
 
skycheattraffic's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Posts: 2,699
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
How well is he sitting? At his age I imagine he still needs quite a bit of support. I'd wait. I'd be ok around 5.5-6 months but not around 4. He is curious but his digestion is likely not ready yet. I also would put him down while eating. There's nothing anti-AP about leaving baby to play with a toy happily for a few minutes while you eat. Of course if baby is upset or hungry, I'd pick him up but otherwise enjoy a few minutes of personal space along with a meal. There will be lots of time to eat with baby/toddler on your lap and enjoy sharing a meal wink1.gif
skycheattraffic is offline  
#6 of 17 Old 08-17-2013, 06:29 AM
 
delfin's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 298
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

Im a believer in Baby Led Weaning. I think babies nered to be mature enough to eat solid foods, and the maturity level is given by 4 signs: being able to sit unassisted, losing the tongue trush reflex and developing a pincer grasp. Interest in food is also a sign, but it can not be the only one. My baby is 4 months, and if Im drinking a beer wiuth her on my lap, she will reach for the glass...doesnt mean shes ready for it.

 

I suggest laying her on the floor and you can sit next to her while you eat. If she can sit down and grab food from your plate, shes ready :)

vermontgirl and ValerieMarie like this.
delfin is offline  
#7 of 17 Old 08-17-2013, 08:00 AM
 
mamazee's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: US midwest
Posts: 7,528
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
I would wait until 6 months because there's evidence that it is a huge benefit to wait until their digestive system is mature, which is at 6 months. Here's a link from Kellymom: http://kellymom.com/nutrition/starting-solids/delay-solids/

You can always give your baby a spoon to chew on and play with while your'e eating. Babies have interest in lots of things they shouldn't do, and they put everything in their mouth, so I don't personally think wanting to have it or wanting to put it in his mouth means a whole lot.

Anyway, read the Kellymom link so you have knowledge of that side of this issue before you decide what to do for sure. smile.gif
mamazee is offline  
#8 of 17 Old 08-23-2013, 06:35 AM
 
ValerieMarie's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2013
Location: Lockport, NY
Posts: 20
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by delfin View Post

Im a believer in Baby Led Weaning. I think babies nered to be mature enough to eat solid foods, and the maturity level is given by 4 signs: being able to sit unassisted, losing the tongue trush reflex and developing a pincer grasp. Interest in food is also a sign, but it can not be the only one. My baby is 4 months, and if Im drinking a beer wiuth her on my lap, she will reach for the glass...doesnt mean shes ready for it.

 

I suggest laying her on the floor and you can sit next to her while you eat. If she can sit down and grab food from your plate, shes ready :)

 

I completely agree with this... I just brought my 4-month old in for his vaccinations and the doctor told me I could start introducing cereal into his diet. She said to mix it in with his milk, no more than a couple tablespoons a day, and go from there. I understand you are breastfeeding, but do you ever use a bottle for that?? If not, try making a small portion up in a bowl and try spoon-feeding to him. As long as he can sit on his own, shows an interest in eating, and can grab onto things himself, he is ready!!! I was also told that between 4-6 months is when they start noticing your food and drinks, and will seem very interested in trying them out with you. This is one of the most common signs that your baby is ready to transition into more solid foods. Don't start by giving your LO squash and carrots right away, obviously, lol. But introducing cereal might satisfy their craving for more food, and they will start to feel that sense of "Oh yay, I get to eat what mommy is eating and it's good!!" If you truly feel that your baby isn't quite ready for cereal, but still want them to sit with you while you eat, try using one of the "Nibbler" pacifier things... It's the one with the net on the end that you fill with food so the baby can get the flavor and nutrients from the food, without having to actually "eat" it. I have put clementines (mini oranges) into my son's Nibbler and he goes to town on it!! He will eat about half of a clementine before he loses interest. It's also great for bananas and other mushy-solid fruits and veggies...... just food for thought ;-) 

ValerieMarie is offline  
#9 of 17 Old 08-30-2013, 09:17 AM
 
vermontgirl's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Northern Vermont
Posts: 2,124
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

I would wait until she is AT LEAST six months and after that, see what she does if you give her a small bite of a puree. I think it is a good idea to start slowly with just a tablespoon or two a day until they start really grabbing for it and wanting to eat. I don't think there should ever be a rush with this, because your four month old is probably not truly ready, and is being nourished completely by your milk. Also, I personally always skip the rice cereal and go right for things like squash, sweet potato...mild soft veggies. 


Living the Joyful life as a mama of three beautiful children who are just right the way they are.

I blog at www.saboss.blogspot.com chicken3.gif

vermontgirl is offline  
#10 of 17 Old 09-02-2013, 04:43 PM
 
JudiAU's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Where creepy facebook-featured threads can't find me
Posts: 3,586
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)

I'd wait until at least six months.Your four month old needs nothing other than bm and would probably be interested  in chewing your dirty shoes, if you held them and seemed to be eating them. A four month is just interested and cannot fathom the concept of food. I don't think you are witnessing "hungry behavior" merely interested behavior. It says nothing about the stomach ready for foods.

JudiAU is offline  
#11 of 17 Old 09-15-2013, 11:43 AM
 
sageowl's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: Oregon
Posts: 631
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Odds are pretty good that even if the baby sits up well and is super interested, there'd still be the tongue thrust happening...so I'd wait.
sageowl is offline  
#12 of 17 Old 09-15-2013, 01:50 PM
 
heldt123's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: Is crazy a location?
Posts: 2,775
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by vermontgirl View Post
 

I would wait until she is AT LEAST six months and after that, see what she does if you give her a small bite of a puree. I think it is a good idea to start slowly with just a tablespoon or two a day until they start really grabbing for it and wanting to eat. I don't think there should ever be a rush with this, because your four month old is probably not truly ready, and is being nourished completely by your milk. Also, I personally always skip the rice cereal and go right for things like squash, sweet potato...mild soft veggies. 

 

I agree with this.


Mom to two boys, ages 8 and 11, and one blessing due May 8th.

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 baby.gif 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40

heldt123 is offline  
#13 of 17 Old 09-15-2013, 01:54 PM
 
blessedwithboys's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
Posts: 3,600
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 7 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by ValerieMarie View Post
 

 

I completely agree with this... I just brought my 4-month old in for his vaccinations and the doctor told me I could start introducing cereal into his diet. She said to mix it in with his milk, no more than a couple tablespoons a day, and go from there. I understand you are breastfeeding, but do you ever use a bottle for that?? If not, try making a small portion up in a bowl and try spoon-feeding to him. As long as he can sit on his own, shows an interest in eating, and can grab onto things himself, he is ready!!! I was also told that between 4-6 months is when they start noticing your food and drinks, and will seem very interested in trying them out with you. This is one of the most common signs that your baby is ready to transition into more solid foods. Don't start by giving your LO squash and carrots right away, obviously, lol. But introducing cereal might satisfy their craving for more food, and they will start to feel that sense of "Oh yay, I get to eat what mommy is eating and it's good!!" If you truly feel that your baby isn't quite ready for cereal, but still want them to sit with you while you eat, try using one of the "Nibbler" pacifier things... It's the one with the net on the end that you fill with food so the baby can get the flavor and nutrients from the food, without having to actually "eat" it. I have put clementines (mini oranges) into my son's Nibbler and he goes to town on it!! He will eat about half of a clementine before he loses interest. It's also great for bananas and other mushy-solid fruits and veggies...... just food for thought ;-)

Cereal is a terrible first food for a baby.  It's highly processed and the added iron is difficult to absorb.  Even the whole grain versions are likely to over stress the gut and upset the balance, to say nothing of the phytic acid.  Squash and carrots are a decent choice.  Avocado may be a bit better because it provides wonderful healthy fat, but if it's a choice between grain and veggies, go for the veggies.  The nibbler might be handy with a breast milk ice cube in it.  It's just way too young at 4 mos to give anything else.  And if the food has to be practically liquefied to keep from gagging the baby, the baby is too young.  You'll know it's time when you can put small mushy cubes or clumps down and he/she will pinch them up to the mouth and swallow relatively gag-free.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by JudiAU View Post
 

I'd wait until at least six months.Your four month old needs nothing other than bm and would probably be interested  in chewing your dirty shoes, if you held them and seemed to be eating them. A four month is just interested and cannot fathom the concept of food. I don't think you are witnessing "hungry behavior" merely interested behavior. It says nothing about the stomach ready for foods.

 Love this!


Bring back the old MDC
blessedwithboys is offline  
#14 of 17 Old 09-16-2013, 09:03 PM
 
MaggieLC's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2013
Posts: 410
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

I agree that in nearly all cases 4 months is simply too young for any solid food. The digestive system develops slowly and things like amylase (the enzyme that digests starch.... like cereal) isn't present in the gut until between 6 and 12 months. That means the baby gets NO nutritional benefit from it, as she can't break it down to get nutrition. The reason for giving babies solids is not to "fill them up" but to supplement their diet and help them learn to eat. Putting cereal in a bottle is an ill advised idea for many reasons 1) the baby doesn't have the enzyme to digest the cereal 2) the bottle bypasses the front of the mouth, where starches are started to be digested and 3) she isn't LEARNING anything about how to eat by liquifying "food" and drinking it.

 

Also, babies this age reach for EVERYTHING and put everything into their mouths. If you put play doh on the table, she'd reach for that and eat that, too. It doesn't mean that is appropriate for her.

 

In my role of a Lactation Consultant MDs who recommend solid food (especially cereal, a "food" which I really have issues with for babies) irritate me to no end. The American Academy of Pediatricians stresses NO solids until after the middle of the first year. ANY MD who recommends solids before 6 months is going against the recommendations of the organization they purpose to support! Are they even listening to what their governing body is saying?

 

I've had MDs who have been clients of mine, few breast fed beyond a few weeks. MDs have busy schedules and go back to work more than full time only weeks after their babies are born most of the time. A lot of MD mothers tend to use "convenience" parenting ideas a lot of the time because they have so little time for their kids (it's sad to say, but in most cases it's simply true, UNLESS they have decided to take a year or more off of work to parent, which I have yet to see an MD mother do.)  "Hints" like "use cereal in a bottle to save time spoon feeding and FILL the baby up so he needs less milk or formula" are often used because.... these ideas are convenient for the mother, not because they have ANY benefit for the baby. I'm not disrespecting MD moms, but in more than 20 years working with breastfeeding mothers and having my share of MD clients, I can count on one hand the ones who APed, breastfed more than a few weeks and didn't use "convenience parenting" methods. When your work demands ALL your waking hours like an MD's does, it's hard to take the time to parent in a way that takes time and waits for the baby to be ready for things.

 

Of course, many MDs are not mothers because they are busy advancing their careers, so they just go with what "seems" convenient. I always tell my clients: Your Pediatrician is there for SICK children and babies. THAT is her specialty. She is not your Lactation Consultant, she is not your Nutritional Consultant and she sure as heck is NOT your Lifestyle Consultant. Anything she says about specific illness, as long as it has fact behind it is her territory. However, LIFESTYLE suggestions are out of her Scope of Practice, so take these with a grain of salt.

Neither Lactation nor Nutrition is taught in most medical schools, in those that these subjects are taught, they are never required courses for one's medical license. Most MDs have little knowledge (or experience) about normal breastfeeding and healthy nutrition. A few do go the extra mile and LEARN about these subjects, but none of these doctors would suggest solids at 4 months.

 

 

That being said, babies often notice food and are interested in in LONG before they are ready for it. Sitting alone without support, cutting of teeth, the development of pincher grasp (thumb and forefinger, NOT whole hand grabbing) and loss of tongue thrust reflex are all signs of solid readiness. Rarely are ALL these signs seen in babies before the mid first year mark. If the baby needs food "liquified" or sucks on her hand in order to swallow solid food she isn't ready to handle solids yet. The digestive system and the neurological system work together to protect the baby from too early solids and both give very clear signs when it's time for solid food.

 

Good luck. I'd wait a month or more before attempting solid food feeding. It really can make a difference in the baby's eventual digestive health if solids are given too early. I made that mistake with my first child (she was born in the mid 80s) and we're paying for it with non-stop digestive issues, even at the age of 27. If I could go back in time, the huge box of rice cereal my mother brought over at 5 wks would have gone in the trash and I would have waited until 6 months.

 

It won't hurt to wait until ALL the developmental signs are there. It's also "fun" to give solids to a baby.... the first few times, then it becomes a bit tedious and messy. I'm a fan of later is better.


Attachment Parenting: The radical notion that children are human. bfinfant.gif
MaggieLC is offline  
#15 of 17 Old 09-16-2013, 09:17 PM
 
Lazurii's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Near Portland, Oregon
Posts: 810
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

I'm going to be contrary and say give her a bit of food.  My son, our first, wasn't interested in food until around 10 months, even though we started giving him solids at 7 months.  It just wasn't his thing.  My daughter, on the other hand, begged and begged to eat at 4 months, and at 4.5 months we let her eat solids.  Yeah, she didn't really digest anything, but neither did my son at 7 months.

 

If I were to do it over again I would still start giving her solids at 4.5 months, but I would stick to egg yolks or chicken/beef liver.

pepperedmoth and JenVose like this.

SAHM to DS BuggaBoo blahblah.gif  12/07, and DD Doozer energy.gif03/10.  Sharing life with The Hubby since 01/05.

Lazurii is offline  
#16 of 17 Old 10-08-2013, 08:17 PM
 
Sara79's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Washington State
Posts: 67
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
it's been said but I'm going to chime in as well I would wait. my almost 7 month old is a chunk... at 4 months he was grabbing for everything and we joked that when its time for him to eat he is going to chow down. He's ebf... and 6 months my husband let him taste banana.. he shuttered and turned away. since then I've let him taste a little piece of avocado which he spit out, tonight I steamed carrots left them in chunks he just played with them he has no interest in food. so while I thought when it was time to feed him he'd go for it with gusto... I was wrong he's very happy to just nurse and that's ok. he has the rest of his life to eat smile.gif
My first two were much more enthused with food.

Married to my best friend, love Jesus, birth doula & homeschooling mama to DS 8 & DD 6 & belly.gifMarch 2013. Looking forward to breastfeeding/babywearing& co-sleeping again

 homeschool.gifcrochetsmilie.gif

Sara79 is offline  
#17 of 17 Old 10-08-2013, 08:31 PM
 
katelove's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: Australia
Posts: 3,751
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 8 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by MaggieLC View Post

the development of pincher grasp (thumb and forefinger, NOT whole hand grabbing)

Actually, I'm pretty sure whole hand grabbing is what they're talking about. The Baby-led Weaning book specifically says a finger/thumb pincer grip (which doesn't usually develop til 8-12months) isn't required. That being able to reliably grasp objects and take them to their mouth is sufficient.

I agree with everyone that 4mo is too early though. I am a fairly hardcore wait until at least 6mo proponent, for all the reasons mentioned by PPs.

Mother of two spectacular girls, born mid-2010 and late 2012  mdcblog5.gif

katelove is online now  
Reply

Tags
Baby

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the Mothering Forums forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.
User Name:
If you do not want to register, fill this field only and the name will be used as user name for your post.
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.
Password:
Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.
Email Address:

Log-in

Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.



User Tag List

Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page


Forum Jump: 

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are Off