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Evidence for waiting until 6 months?

(16 Posts)
FruitSaladIsNotPudding Wed 03-Apr-13 12:43:47

I'm wondering if anyone can help me - I've been looking into weaning research a bit and am struggling to find hard evidence in favour of waiting until 26 weeks. Plenty to suggest weaning before 17 weeks is a bad idea, but not much else. I am happy to wait if it is the best thing, but not just because the NHS has decided to idiot proof it's advice to stop people weaning at 12 weeks!

I am aware of the open gut theory, just can't really find anything solid to suggest weaning between 17 -26 weeks is harmful. I'm further confused by the fact that lots of other countries support weaning between 4 - 6 months.

For the record, I have an 18 week old. I wouldn't say she is ready now, but she's not far off. Also, I am a rubbish breastfeeder (long, boring story, it really isn't fixable) so weaning might be helpful to us.

Can anyone point me in the right direction if I am missing something?

JiltedJohnsJulie Wed 03-Apr-13 13:48:13

Is she really showing signs of readiness? It would certainly be unusual at such a young age.

Anyway, thought you might like this article and this article both from the analytical armadillo and why delay solids from kellymom.

It is totally upto you but if I were you I'd try to wait. I've weaned 2, one in the bad old days at 16 weeks and one at 23 weeks when she displayed all the signs of readiness by grabbing sone food and scoffing it. It is just so much easier to wean an older baby smile

FruitSaladIsNotPudding Wed 03-Apr-13 14:38:40

I don't think she's quite there, but her head control has been v good for ages, she's good at sitting in highchair and starting to sit up on ground, and she can reach and put things in her mouth. She tried to take a bite of my Easter egg yesterday!

I take your point though. I weaned dd1 at 23 weeks ish and did hardly any purees, which made it easy. I wished I'd weaned her earlier though, because she shot up through the centiles (she is also v tall) and was MUCH more content.

FruitSaladIsNotPudding Wed 03-Apr-13 14:51:13

Thanks for the links btw, they are interesting.

ChunkyPickle Wed 03-Apr-13 15:03:06

I don't know. I suspect that like many things, there are many babies who are ready earlier, but there's no way to tell if yours is one of them and the 6 month rule means that the vast majority of children will be ready - a kind of better to be safe than sorry thing. Given that many children are formula fed from birth - which may as well be food - I suspect that it's not that big a deal or formula fed babies would be at a huge disadvantage, and they're clearly not.

I do know that DS didn't get into the swing of eating very much at all until he was 10 months, so if I'd started at 4 months I would have been very, very frustrated (and so would he).

He had all the physical signs for weaning very early - sitting up/head control/grabbing etc. but he just wasn't ready himself.

JiltedJohnsJulie Wed 03-Apr-13 16:27:39

You sound like you don't have much confidence in your bfing, is it something you want to talk about? Have you tried the breast & bottle section?

M0naLisa Thu 04-Apr-13 13:35:28

Hmm my ds doesn't have the signs. I've started too early.
Well he's only had one day where he's had extra that his milk.

anklebitersmum Thu 04-Apr-13 13:47:44

Well I weaned at 4 months with all 4 of mine. Was 4 months recommended with DS1 and DD2 but DD1 and DS2 should have been 6 months 'officially'. All fine, healthy eat everything babies and now children.

No issues stomach-wise and I did a combine bottle breast with DC2,3 & 4.

All of mine were lip-smacking, reaching and practically drooling when you ate something in front of them by then. Started with very sloppy baby rice/porridge and went from there.

<applies body armour, helmet and flame proof pants>

anklebitersmum Thu 04-Apr-13 13:50:33

Would say that all babies are different though..just because one does one thing another may well be different development-wise.

FruitSaladIsNotPudding Thu 04-Apr-13 14:01:09

I don't think anyone will flame you anklebiters. It was 4 months, not 4 weeks!

Anyway, this thread has been pretty slow so I guess the evidence for waiting until 6 months is rather thin on the ground. Happy to be corrected btw!

I will wait a couple more weeks I think and wean around the 20/21 week mark.

FruitSaladIsNotPudding Thu 04-Apr-13 14:01:42

Assuming she seems ready, obviously!

anklebitersmum Thu 04-Apr-13 14:10:10

grin Fruit (and I agree as regards pudding btw)

rootypig Thu 04-Apr-13 14:13:19

I have no experience, just reading with interest as have a 22 week DD who I am not sure is ready, but think might be (slightly less critical for us re your timing question). Soon am going to put her in bumbo with some chunks of banana and very soft cooked veg and see what she makes of it. If you think your older DD would have been happier weaned earlier and your DD2 is interested, surely some simple BLW like in a few weeks ie at 20 weeks wouldn't hurt? we were all weaned at 12 fgs, and what Chunky says about formula being basically food makes sense.

worldgonecrazy Thu 04-Apr-13 14:18:04

If you follow the BLW route you can't get it wrong because (unless there are other issues) your baby won't actually eat any food until she's ready. Try sitting with her on your lap at meal times with easy to grab food nearest her, so bits of cooked broccoli, chips etc. If she picks it up and eats it she's ready, if not she's not. We did BLW and DD weaned at 19 weeks.

It's worth remembernig that a lot of weaning foods are lower calories/fat than your breastmilk, so weaning may not be the panacea you need.

FruitSaladIsNotPudding Thu 04-Apr-13 15:48:07

Hmm. I think if I start soon I'll have to go down purees route, at least for a few weeks. I'm not a blw purist anyway. Or rather, i would always follow my baby's lead, but i think purees are fine (and quite useful) as well as finger foods/self feeding stuff.

I know weaning won't be a panacea; I just think she's approaching being ready and am trying to balance that with currear advice.

Spoke to hv this morning and she was pretty apathetic -told me the advice is to wait but it's probably fine anyway.

FruitSaladIsNotPudding Thu 04-Apr-13 15:49:09

currear?? current advice obviously.

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