Advanced search

What's for lunch today? Take inspiration from Mumsnetters' tried-and-tested recipes in our Top Bananas! cookbook - now under £10

Find out more

Someone explain baby led weaning to me

(90 Posts)
lexyloub Wed 08-Jul-15 10:41:17

Ds is 20 weeks he's only just gone onto hungry baby milk he has 5 6oz bottles a day and sleeps through the night. Hes always followed the 9th centile growth line. He's a very content baby and I don't think he's ready for food just yet.

When I had my older dc it was all baby rice leading to purees then introducing lumps around 7m. This worked very well with my older dc although they were hungrier babies and we're on the baby rice well before now.

I'm happy to do it this way again but I'm interested to know more about blw. At the moment ds is not stable sat up in a highchair, I used to feed older dcs in a bouncer chair to begin with.

How will I know when he's ready and how do I start? Hv said I need to start this at 6m but what if he's not ready. At the moment he's very content with his milk I can't see that in only 4 weeks time he'll be ready for food or can it change that quickly?

Any advice welcome

EatShitDerek Wed 08-Jul-15 10:44:37

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

nottheOP Wed 08-Jul-15 10:48:23

Have a watch

It is easier but much more messy than spoon feeding. We just did a bit of both, so a bit of toast for them to gum at whilst you're having yours in the morning etc

CMOTDibbler Wed 08-Jul-15 10:49:24

Cook healthy food for the whole family. Chuck some of it in front of baby. Let them eat it in their own way.
If you feel generous, then you can use larger pasta shapes, cook mince so its clumpier than usual etc, but its not compulsory.

In 4 weeks I'm sure your ds will be sitting up ok - but they do need to sit upright to make sure they swallow properly

Gileswithachainsaw Wed 08-Jul-15 10:49:41

What derek said.

deciding your only going to do something one way basically just sets you up to fail and limits your options.

just feed your baby.

NotCitrus Wed 08-Jul-15 10:52:47

You give them food to play with (strawberries, fat chips, sticks of meat) and give them the spoon for stuff in the hope you won't need to do the spooning.

Though ds made it clear very quickly that as it would be much more efficient if I fed him, that was what he expected. I figure that was baby-led too! He loved chomping on roast dinner components from about 7 months.

Never figured out why so many parents went on about weaning other than best ways to clear up after.

SaulGood Wed 08-Jul-15 10:53:46

Babies are ready to wean when their guts are ready for solid food. This isn't anything to do with how hungry they are or how much they sleep or how big they are. The idea is that when the gut matures and can cope with solids, the external development mirrors this. So, they are able to sit up (with support), pick up food, put it in their mouths, chew it, move it round their mouths and swallow. This happens somewhere around 26 weeks.

People call it baby led weaning because instead of the parent making a decision and spooning the food into their mouths, the baby will pick up and eat the food, chew it and swallow it all on their own.

We just had our dc with us at meal times and when ready, they picked up some food and were off. They always ate with us and ate the same as us from the beginning. DD was around 27 weeks and DS was a couple of weeks younger but then was really unwell so didn't have any solids until 28 weeks.

I don't think it's a 'poncy' name. I think it's just that when we're talking about something, it's nice to have a shorthand for it. We do it with all areas of child-rearing.

It's not obligatory. It's a nice way of sharing meal times. You can do purees and finger foods. You do whatever suits you.

Be led by your baby. Look for the external signs of being ready to wean and do what is right for your family.

gamerchick Wed 08-Jul-15 10:56:54

His wait till he's ready. A lot can happen development wise in 4 weeks.

Put baby in high chair.. Stick food on high chair and let them feed their hair/eyes/nose/ the area around the chair etc and let them figure out for themselves. It's all about the milk the first year anyway.

lexyloub Wed 08-Jul-15 10:59:47

Will he not choke though just giving him normal food straight away to suck/ chew on?
Advice now is completely different to just 5 years ago. Think I might just stick to what I know never did the older 2 any harm. Don't know why they need to change things it just makes mum's paranoid angry

Sparklingbrook Wed 08-Jul-15 11:01:13

I did this in 1999 and didn't even know it had a name let alone a weird one. grin I called it bunging everything on the high chair tray The one downside was that DS1 from that moment on would not allow anyone else to feed him with a spoon.
He insisted on pronging everything with a fork for quite a while and not eating anything 'wet' IYKWIM.

Good time to do it now because you can bung the highchair outside to eat and save the carpet/floor.

Gileswithachainsaw Wed 08-Jul-15 11:04:26

I don't think it's a 'poncy' name. I think it's just that when we're talking about something, it's nice to have a shorthand for it. We do it with all areas of child-rearing

there already is a shorthand. It's called weaning grin

puddock Wed 08-Jul-15 11:06:15

There's a book by Gill Rapley which discusses it all, choking etc. - often copies available at libraries and children's centres if you don't want to buy one - or there's a website to find out more. It worked well for us.

EatShitDerek Wed 08-Jul-15 11:06:35

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Sparklingbrook Wed 08-Jul-15 11:19:23

Sorry just noticed not ready for the high chair. blush Could be tricky.

SaulGood Wed 08-Jul-15 11:24:26

It is just weaning but as is evidenced by the threads started on here, such as this one, people want to discuss it and it's just a way of distinguishing it from purees. I, personally, never use the term BLW and find 'finger foods' an even more odd term. To me it was just weaning but when people want to talk about it and discuss the different ways of doing it, it's all just naming of parts. It's just the same as having different terms for eating. You can have picnics and BBQs and buffets and cordon bleu and nouveau cuisine and on and on. There are a zillion poncy names used by chefs. Or people suddenly start using the term pulled pork all over the ruddy shop when most of the time they just mean, you know, 'pork'. It's just a name and sometimes it's a useful shorthand when you're talking about they type of weaning you're doing. You don't have to use it but in some specific situations, some people find it useful. Nowt wrong with that.

OP, my eldest is 8 and she was weaned straight onto what we were having because that was what suited us. I don't think baby led weaning is official advice. It's just an option available to you.

WhoKnowsWhereTheTimeGoes Wed 08-Jul-15 11:31:58

Apparently you can't mix baby led weaning and spoon feeding because the two are mutually exclusive. Obviously you can mix spoon feeding and letting the baby feed themselves, but you cannot then claim to have done "baby led weaning" at all. I was told this in no uncertain terms once when I said I had done a mixture of BLW and spoon feeding on another thread.

SaulGood Wed 08-Jul-15 11:38:11

Really WhoKnows (I love your username though it does make me burst into song)? Strikes me that whoever told you that was a wazzock. Why are people so desperate to tell other people what they can or can't do or how they have or haven't failed. I didn't give birth you know. I had two emcs so am not allowed to use the phrase 'gave birth'. Said to me by a wazzock at a baby group. Because this shit matters apparently.

Gileswithachainsaw Wed 08-Jul-15 11:38:28

precisely who grin

which is why I said forget about defining it because it limits options as people care too much about being able to say " I did X"

and no one figured out where soup came in.....

lexyloub Wed 08-Jul-15 11:40:16

Thanks EATSHIT for the vote of confidence I know shouldn't get myself all worked up about stuff like this, I've raised 2 healthy children already before so I know what I'm doing, I think there's far too much pressure these days and what's right and wrong makes you question everything you do sad

LibrariesGaveUsPower Wed 08-Jul-15 11:43:57

I don't think the advice is that different now to five years ago. I did it with all of mine and the eldest is 6.

But I agree. Do purees. Do finger foods. Do both. As long as you don't forget to feed him at all you're grand' grin

Gileswithachainsaw Wed 08-Jul-15 11:44:35

Just relax smile

as long as the food is suitable, ie not salty or too sugary or whatever then nothing else really matters. It doesn't matter if you don't pick a particular method. I just mashed sone stuff up and gave other stuff as finger food. DD2 hated mush so I just gave stuff she could pick up. dd1 ate anything in any form.

Both eat well and eat more or less teh same foods.

made zero difference how each one was fed.

Sparklingbrook Wed 08-Jul-15 11:45:23

I am constantly amazed I got my DC to the ages of 12 and 9 without doubting everything I did before I found MN in 2011. grin

HeadDreamer Wed 08-Jul-15 11:45:28

They are ready for BLW when they manage to put food in mouth and chew and swallow. I did it with 2 as they are both spoon refusers. It's very slow going at first but awesome once you get to 9mo. You feel sorry for those who are still worrying about textures and making special foods. As by 9mo they will have pincer grip and basically the weaning 'stages' are over. Before that you have to be a bit generous and prepare food into special shapes. Large chunky chip sized.

DD2 9mo had a bit of fish and chips and peas at the pub on Sunday. That's how good it is.

Gileswithachainsaw Wed 08-Jul-15 11:46:46

but you could do that with any 9 month old baby confused

Gileswithachainsaw Wed 08-Jul-15 11:48:27

They don't stay on purees. press pretty much just cover the difference between 4 and 6 months. After that they start eating finger foods along side anyway.

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, watch threads, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now »

Already registered? Log in with: