Feeding Your Baby Solid Food and Baby Formula
A newborn’s diet for the few six months will be liquid whether it is breast milk or formula. Do babies drink less when they start solids?
Babies require a nutritious balance of fats, carbs, and protein for their growth and development. Breast milk is best, but organic baby formula can come close as it is fortified with vitamins and minerals that will help them thrive. Even better, it does all of these things without chemicals or heavily processed ingredients that your baby’s digestive system does not tolerate well. By six months of age, your baby has a more developed digestive system and is ready to take on new foods like cereals and purees. This is also the recommendation of the American Academy of Pediatrics and the World Health Organization, to name a few expert groups. As your baby learns about the delicious flavors of organics fruits and vegetables, what does that do to their appetite? Do older babies consume less formula and eat more regular foods?
Older Babies and Formula
Around the time that your baby is six months old, they can be drinking about 32 ounces of formula or breast milk within a 24-hour period. At that point, they do not need to drink much more than that. If your baby is still hungry or just not satisfied with a liquid diet, they may be exhibiting signs of readiness for solid foods. Babies who are ready for solids can:
- Sit up without support
- Chew and not push solids out of the mouth
- Pick up objects with a pincer grip between the thumb and forefinger
- Show interest in how you and your family eats
Some of the formula they drink will be a part of their solid foods. At first, cereal is mixed in with the formula until there is more cereal than formula. A good introduction starts with only 1 to 2 teaspoons of cereal a day. By six to eight months, your baby is more likely to consume 4 to 8 tablespoons of cereal a day along with a fruit or vegetable puree. This can be followed by a bottle to make sure your baby is getting all of the nutrients they still need in a balanced diet. Before your baby becomes a toddler, they will have a lot of experience picking up finger foods and have consumed meats and dairy.
Do Babies Drink Less When They Start Solids?
In spite of all of the new foods that are going into your baby’s tummy, it is still important that your little one keeps up with breast milk or formula. A lot of their nutrition comes from the primary source of nutrition they have had since day one. However, there will be days where they drink less than normal or more than normal. There is nothing wrong if your ten-month old only drinks 24 ounces on most days, then 32 ounces on other days. As long as your baby is exhibiting healthy behaviors and gaining weight at the right pace, then their bodies are doing just fine. Any concerns about nutrition can be addressed to your baby’s pediatrician.
Edited and reposted from October 2018