When your baby starts eating solid foods, you will notice a change in her bowel movements, especially if she has been breastfeeding. Her stool will be much firmer and smellier. Vegetables such as beets, carrots, spinach, and peas are likely to cause a change in color. These changes are normal and are to be expected. Don’t be upset if you notice foods “come out” looking at lot like they went in. These foods may not have been digested or chewed well. You may want to hold off on these foods and try them again later. If your baby has a lot of gas or diarrhea, or if his stomach is upset after eating a specific food, stop serving that food for a few weeks. If your baby has diarrhea for more than a few bowel movements in a row, your baby may be getting dehydrated; call your pediatrician.
More About Starting Your Baby on Solids Foods
• When should I offer solid foods and what should those foods be?
• Is Your Baby Ready to Try Solid Foods?
• Changes in Bowel Movements
• Feeding Himself
• Shopping For Baby’s Food
• Your Baby’s Menu
• Food Supplements
• Food Allergy or Food Intolerance?
• Preventing Poisoning and Choking
Feeding Tips for Months 4-5
Your baby is ready for solid foods when she:
• can sit up with a little support
• has good control of her head and neck
• isn’t satisfied by milk feedings alone
• leans forward or opens her mouth when she sees a spoon
• takes more than a quart and a half of formula each day
• wants formula more often than every 3 hours, or, wants to breastfeed more than 8 to 10 times in 24 hours
• weighs more than 13 pounds or his birth weight has doubled
Baby cereal is usually the first solid food given. Offer your baby cereal when she’s calm and in a happy mood. Use a baby spoon and a thin mixture of rice cereal and breast milk or formula. Place a small amount of cereal on the middle of her tongue. Until she has a little practice, expect it to be pushed out. Just catch it in her spoon and put it right back in.
If she refuses the cereal, don’t force her, just offer her your breast or her bottle. However, don’t put cereal or other solid foods in her bottle — this can cause overfeeding and may delay your baby learning to eat from a spoon.