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Irish guidelines for weaning = from 4-6 months.

(21 Posts)
weebump Sat 12-Jul-08 23:52:58

Hi all. Here in Ireland our guidelines seem to be a bit different, and for the life of me I can't figure out why. We're given a booklet that covers all aspects of babies, and in the section on spoon feeding refers to the WHO guidelines about exclusive breast feeding till 6 months, but says:
"The Department of Health recommends that
you start weaning when your baby is six months old if breast-fed
and 4-6 months old if formula-fed."


Why is it different for formula fed babies? They don't explain it. Any ideas?

PinkTulips Sun 13-Jul-08 00:00:07

i think the reasoning is that BM changes with the child and adapts to their needs whilst formula doesn't (if i recall PHN's babbling correctly)

i did like in that booklet though that they say that when you wean at 6 months it's best to go straight to fingerfoods..... basically advocating and endorsing BLW without calling it that.

tiktok Sun 13-Jul-08 10:08:50

weebump - I am surprised at this difference in the Irish official guidelines. I don't think there is any research to back that up....what does your health nurse say?

weebump Sun 13-Jul-08 16:37:29

I'm going to see her on Wednesday and will ask her then. If I remember, of course. Brain like a thing with lots of holes, you know... a sieve!

ExterminAitch Sun 13-Jul-08 16:47:16

i'm sure that someone's posted this before, but from a scandi country. unfortunately i cna't remember how, or if, it was resolved. i'd be really interested in knowing the answer, do tell what she says, weebump. smile

tiktok Sun 13-Jul-08 18:26:53

I don't think it is a million miles off the wall, though...I have heard the same concerns expressed by people whose views I respect. The research into health outcomes has mainly been done on babies who were exclusively or predominantly breastfed, and for babies who are exclusively or predominantly formula fed, there's just not as much data.

It may turn out that we are asking a lot of a processed, never-changing product, to be adequate for the majority of babies who use it, for 6 mths....I don't know.

ExterminAitch Sun 13-Jul-08 19:20:55

i've certainly noticed, just from my blog and stuff, that ff babies seem to take to self-feeding earlier than bf ones. the majority of mothers on my site are waiting until 6 months, of course, so it's not directly comparable, but from what i observe left to their own devices it's far from uncommon for bf babies to only really start wolfing at 9 mos.

PinkTulips Sun 13-Jul-08 21:05:39

makes you wonder if all that nonsense spouted at bfers about ff making the baby feel fuller and therefore more contented is the exact opposite of the truth. are ff fed babies actually hungrier than bf babies? and if so why when it's a more dense substance that supposedly takes longer to digest?

i do wish they'd do more research into this stuff so that people have better information to go on.

ExterminAitch Sun 13-Jul-08 21:14:22

i suppose if someone gave me a concoction of whipped fat and sugar i'd feel full... but maybe after a while i'd start looking at broccoli and thinking 'yum'. wink

PinkTulips Sun 13-Jul-08 21:35:27


dear god, is it wrong that my pregnant brain just went 'yum' when i read 'concoction of whipped fat and sugar'? shock

ExterminAitch Sun 13-Jul-08 21:41:44

i know, i was thinking 'oooooh, maccyd's milkshake...' grin

PinkTulips Sun 13-Jul-08 21:56:13

fuck... now i'm craving that.......

wonder if dp would drive 45 mins to town and back to get one seeing as he's kicked me out of the living roo to watch stoopid bourne ultimatum again? hmm

ExterminAitch Sun 13-Jul-08 21:57:17

LOVE that film. or one of the other ones, at any rate. haven't seen the last one... would that be the ultimatum by any chance?

PinkTulips Sun 13-Jul-08 22:13:29

lol, yeah that's the last one

dp is an obsessive.

only books he's read for the last year have been ludlum (thank god dad reads thrillers by the shedload and had tonnes to loan him)

don't mind the movies but wouldn't watch them twice..... an excuse to MN instead wink

weebump Wed 16-Jul-08 12:26:18

Well, I spoke to my health nurse today, and asked here why the guidelines were different for breastfed v formula fed babies. She just looked blank like she'd never heard it before! Mind you, she's a bit 'old school'. She's aware that the guidelines used to be from 4 months, but said now its from 5 months. hmm. She had a leaflet from a formula company she thought might explain it, but thought better of it saying "we're not supposed to advertise formula." Fair enough. So, I'm none the wiser. Any more ideas?

ExterminAitch Wed 16-Jul-08 12:28:09

so i take it she's going to find out the answer for you? wink

tiktok Wed 16-Jul-08 14:41:32

weebump, does the Irish Republic health promotion agency or whatever you have that's like that have an advice line you could call? I have to say I am intrigued by this - there has to be some research somewhere, or else some consensus discussions among the people who advise the department of health,because people are not allowed to make things up!

It's a bit pathetic of your nurse not to be aware or to know or to offer to find out!

PinkTulips Fri 18-Jul-08 14:54:04

pmsl tiktok... irish PHNs are total dinosaurs.

mine told me that there was no way dd could be allergic to cow's milk 'because you breastfed her dear and milk is milk after all' hmm

surely it should be on the internet somewhere if it's true?

PinkTulips Fri 18-Jul-08 15:07:34

ok if you google 'weaning at 4-6 months of formula fed babies' you get a department of health page that i can't open because my pc is old and dumb but might have the info in it, here is the link

PinkTulips Fri 18-Jul-08 15:20:17

m now horrified at how much utter tripe is on the web about weaning and breastfeeding. thouroughly depressed myself doing that and have no info at all about irelands differant guidlines.

did find this interesting article about primates feeding and weaning habits though here

PinkTulips Fri 18-Jul-08 15:27:28

sorry about spelling, ds was dozing in my arms blush

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