Perspective of two might help...I did purees with my first and am now doing strict BLW with my second. My second is now 7 months and gaining just as much weight and appears just as satisfied if not more. Obviously they're different kids but I find it reassuring to think about my two data points!
Remember the sucking/juices is giving them calories just as if she was 'eating'. That said, I am with Kneedeep, if she seems hungry to you, load her some food (quinoa? yogurt?) on a spoon to try herself and watch her to see if she wants it.
Am off to post a reassuring plea of my own....mine is eating too much and refusing milk!
I started BLW DD1 at seven months and she didn't really start actually eating till ten months (we even had a week off from food when she was nine months as there was work being done on the house). She was happy and content and gaining weight and we had no problems with her eating.
Personally I think just do what feels right. My dd is a very hungry girl and likes her grub. She quickly dropped milk feeds but exclusive blw was leaving her hungry. I now give her a small ish portion of spoon food then let her have at as much finger food as she wants and seems very happy with that. She is now 9 months and def difference in food that's actually eaten rather than just chewed so spoon food/finger food ratio has gradually changed. This works for us but you know your baby and when she is hungry and happy so you will know best.
My DD is the same at 10 months, and she's a gorgeous, healthy little thing. My hope is that by not making a fuss about what she eats or doesn't eat she'll grow up without the food issues that plague most of the other women in my family!
So my dd is 11 mo & still doesn't actually swallow much. Added into the mix she now chucks things over the side of the high chair when she doesn't want them. It's hard not to get concerned, sometimes I can hardly bear to watch her, she makes such a mess & eats so little. I'm hoping she'll start gobbling food up soon, nothing else I can do about it really. I'm nor sure if this is fairly common with blw at than age or not.
My dd is now 7.5 months and we blw and ebf on demand and I'm always hearing how my friends babies of similar ages are on 3 square puree meals a day etc and i always worry as my dd will pick at bits and squish them and suck them and that's about it! However she's on the 91st centile for weight so is getting enough!
Those are really good points; I feel cross that I'm socially conditioned to think of purées and those little Cow and Gate pots that on balance look grim! But I figure that I weathered society on cloth nappies and demand breastfeeding, so I can manage this too...
Don't forget that with puree, it's impossible to tell how much is actually digested as it comes out the same as it went in - you could get your baby to take a lot in but it doesn't mean their body is doing a whole lot with it!
Blw is about so much more than how much they're eating, she's learning about taste, texture, how to handle and manipulate food, how to move it around her mouth (and spit it out!) Swallowing food is a really small part of eating when you think about it, and she will get there.
DS was blw and didn't really eat much to start with, wasn't till about 9 months that there was more being eaten than not.
Mine's having a grand time sucking on everything and swallowing almost nothing too (also 6 months). In my concern, I tried going down the purée route for a couple of feeds - turns out he's a total spoon refuser anyway, so I figure there's no point worrying about it!
Despite being convinced BLW is the right thing for Commanderling I'm really struggling with panicking that she's not actually eating anything - right now she's having a grand old time with a chunk of melon but she's only sucking it really and this seem to be the pattern - she loves playing with it and tasting but not much eating is happening.
I know I'm overthinking it - she's only just 6 months - but my friends' babies are gobbling down purées in huge quantities and it's so hard not to think I should be doing that too or she's not going to get the nutrients she needs (she's EBF on demand still).
Please reassure me that this is normal and I'm fussing over nothing!