Thursday, March 31, 2011

Solids Confusion

Evan is at that age where I am considering seriously starting solids. "Seriously" meaning to try them once a day and actually get him to...you know...eat. We have tried a couple things with him in the last week: we gave him a chunk of banana that he put in his mouth and made a "what-the-heck-is-this?" face; I gave him an apple core that he licked; I tried giving him some brown rice cereal, which all dribbled down his face.

I'm wondering if I'm starting too early or if I should be trying different foods. But, there is so much information and confusion out there about when to start solids and what to start with.

Evan's GI doctor told me that the latest literature is showing we should be starting solids at about 4 months. Evan's pediatrician said to start some time between 4-6 months, whenever he's showing the signs (sitting upright in a bumbo or highchair, showing interest in our food, waking up at night or earlier in the morning, not being satisfied by breast milk or formula, etc. --- which he is). A doctor of a friend of mine says absolutely DO NOT start until 6 months.

Then there is the what: some say to start with whole grain cereal mixed with lots of liquid since it will be closer to breast milk/formula, making the transition easier. Some say absolutely DO NOT use cereal because there is really no nutritional value and it doesn't teach them about food texture. Some say start with banana because it's easily digestible and very unlikely to cause an allergic reaction. Some say absolutely DO NOT start with banana because then they'll expect every food to be sweet and will create a picky eater. Some say to use purees because it is easier for them to eat. Some say absolutely DO NOT use purees, but use chunks of solid food so they learn different textures and how to eat different types of food. Some say absolutely DO NOT use chunks because the baby could choke.

And round and round we go.

Holy crapola, batman. Information overload! And contradictory information at that.

I know, with this many opinions out there, clearly this is one of those things you should just trust your gut on and do what you think is best for you and your baby. The problem is my head is reeling from all of the do's and don'ts that I don't know whether I'm coming or going.

What's funny is I know this is one of those things I will look back on and wonder what I was so stressed and worried about.