Last updated on Jun 21st, 2021 at 11:08 am

Try these tips to get your baby to eat well at mealtimes

The introduction of food into a child’s diet can be an extremely stressful ordeal for both the parents and the child.

New flavours, textures, smells and sensations can have different effects on different babies. You may find that although one day your baby loves pureed peas, the next day she will push it away with a tightly sealed mouth and scornful face.

This doesn’t necessarily mean that your baby is picky but could also mean that she is feeling sick, is full or may even be experiencing some discomfort.

If you feel that your baby is not eating enough remember to monitor weight which will either give you peace of mind or may require a trip to the pediatrician.

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Try these tips to get your baby to eat well at mealtimes:

Don’t force feed

Continuing to put spoonfuls of food in front of your babies face after they have refused the previous four creates an uncomfortable environment around feeding times. Your baby may not eat much at one feed but at the next feed will eat more than enough. He will stop when full and eat when hungry. They are clever humans not to be underestimated.

Try new textures

You can give the same foods but with different textures to make things more exciting. One day try pureed carrots and the next day make it a little bit thicker. Also try different textures in the same meal.

Minimise distractions

Turn off the TV and remove all playful objects. Try to ensure that your baby is focused on the food and not on the activity going on around the room.

Monitor meal length

Babies do not like to sit in their feeding chairs for prolonged periods of time so try and get feeding done in 20 to 30 minutes. Allow more time on the tougher textures and less time on the mashed and pureed foods.

Let your baby enjoy mealtime

Your baby needs to associate mealtimes with pleasure and not stress. Allow your baby to touch the food and make a controlled mess. Taste some of it yourself so they can see you enjoy it to. Feeding your baby should be enjoyable for the both of you.