Lily had her 4 month checkup last week and the topic of starting solids came up with our pediatrician— who I just adore! With Joey, I was more than ready to begin him on solid foods at 4 months. My milk supply was dwindling, we had started him on formula, and he was physically showing signs of readiness. With Anthony, I waited a little bit longer [6 months]. I remember feeling overwhelmed at the fact that I was chasing a toddler and having to sit down to feed a baby. And now what’s my plan with Lily? Little sis is going to have to wait just like big bro Anthony. Imagine that!
BUT here’s the main reason why:
The American Academy of Pediatrics [AAP] recommends breastfeeding as the sole source of nutrition for your baby until 6 months of age. Same goes for formula. And since I’m exclusively breastfeeding and my milk seems to be just what she needs based on her growth chart, that’s what I’m going to keep doing! And if I was exclusively giving formula I know I would do the same [just like I did in Anthony’s case]. A part of me is also selfishly holding off on solids because I know it’s another “thing” I will need to sit still and be patient for. Actually, the boys will need to be patient… and let sis do her thing while they are likely destroying my kitchen and living room.
So why did my pediatrician give me the green light for starting solids despite the AAP recommendation? Lily is showing the common signs of readiness: holding her head up, pulling things from her hands to mouth, and she’s on track for personal stats like weight and length. That’s why some people do NOT wait until 6 months— they’ve likely been given the OK from their pediatrician. Just like most things with babies [sleep, mannerisms, milestones] It’s all dependent on your baby. Heck, I think that’s what I’m learning about most stages with children.
The AAP just wants you to know that your baby will be totally fine from a nutrition and health standpoint if they are exclusively fed breastmilk or formula up until 6 months of age.*
So we have two more months until the big introduction of solid foods. I can’t wait to share my favorite hobby [eating] with my best girl.
*If your little one is ready for solids, keep in mind that breastmilk or formula should still be their main source of nutrition during the first year of life. In fact, starting solids is meant to be more of an experience vs. a must-do for nutrition purposes. You might also find some these resources useful: