What’s the right age to start your baby on solids?
Around the time your baby reached six months old your baby will need extra nutrients alongside milk feeds and will show signs of being ready to learn new feeding skills.
At a glance
- Six months is the best time to start weaning
- Starting too early can be harmful to little ones health
- Your baby may drop hints that they are ready such as trying to put things in their mouth
Why 6 months is the best time
It’s hugely exciting watching your baby taste solids for the first time, but it’s important you start at the right time.
Why you don’t want to start too early
There’s no need to start feeding babies solid food before six months months. Here’s why:
- They get all the nutrients they need from milk
- They need to be able to sit with support and hold their head steady to be able to swallow food safely
- Weight gain - introducing solid foods too soon is associated with an increased risk of obesity
Why 6 months is bang on
Sometime around six months, babies start to need more and more milk to meet their nutritional needs, and it's time to start on more concentrated foods for several reasons:
- More iron please - babies are born with a hefty iron supply that lasts for about six months, so by six months they need to be getting new iron from those lovely solids
- Good co-ordination – their jaw and tongue will have developed enough to cope with learning to eat and swallow food
- Hard toothy gums - babies teeth will be already well formed in their gums making them nice and hard to begin squashing soft lumps and later chewing – you don’t have to wait for teeth to come through to begin weaning