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Nursing and solids; the merging of the two

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Baby FeedingThe World Health Organization recommend exclusive breastfeeding for baby’s first six months. In practice, many people decide to introduce solids slightly before this and it is very much a personal choice. It is not recommended to introduce solids too early, however, unless a doctor tells you to, as baby’s developing guy does not need solids.

Breastmilk provides all the nutrition your baby needs for the first six months but, importantly, it still provides a great deal of nutrition after this, so it’s a great idea to continue with breastfeeding alongside solid food. In fact, the WHO advise that this should be done until around two years of age or beyond. Cow’s milk can be introduced alongside breastmilk if required, but this should usually not be given as a drink until after 12 months.

There’s an oft-quoted saying, food before one is just for fun, and the main thing about moving onto solids when you still breastfeed on demand is that food really should be fun. It’s okay to let your baby play with food, explore the new textures and try it at her own pace. Babies should never be rushed or forced to eat, and it takes a long time for some little ones to fully transition onto solids.

If you wish to continue nursing alongside solids, always nurse on demand, and offer milk before food so that your baby doesn’t fill up on food and then stop breastfeeding. If you’re concerned about how much your little one is eating, always discuss it with your own doctor.


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