Introduction of Solid Foods to Infants





Introduction of Solid Foods to Infants



the first 6 months of life breast milk is the only food required by most
infants.  Premature infants normally
thrive on breast milk as it provides essential antibodies that protect their
immune function and nutrients that optimize growth.  A nursing mother just needs to be sure her
nutritional needs are being adequately met. 
Generally, an additional 500 calories daily should be added to the diet
to meet the demands of lactation.


approximately 6 months of age, a baby’s digestive tract is not able to
adequately digest most foods.  The
introduction of foods too early may induce food allergies or food
sensitivities.  Furthermore, it has been
conclusively demonstrated in a Finnish study that prolonged exclusive
breastfeeding will significantly reduce the incidence of food allergy and
intolerance, even in families with a strong tendency to allergy.


that commonly result from food allergies/sensitivities include upper
respiratory infections, ear infections, and gastroenteritis.   A baby is usually ready for solid foods when
s/he is able to sit up and is able to push food away.  New foods should be introduced one at a time
for a week to see if there is any reactivity.  


that may indicate reactivity to a food include:


            •  Rash around mouth or anus                                  •  Diarrhea or mucus in stool

            •  Hyperactivity or lethargy                                      •  Constipation

            •  Allergic shiners (dark circles under eyes)              •  Runny nose

            •  Skin reactions (urticaria)                                      •  Dyslexia

            •  Infection                                                             •  Redness of face, cheeks

Change in drawings-less realistic                          •  Ear infections


following schedule for introducing solid foods to a breast fed infant has been
compiled from numerous naturopathic physicians who work extensively with
infants and children.  Most physicians
suggest avoiding common allergens such as cow’s milk, wheat, oranges, eggs, and
chocolate early in the introductory phase (up to the first year).  It is best to introduce one new food at a
time while observing for reactions, i.e. sneezing, runny nose, rash around the
mouth, anus or urethra, a change in stool or personality. 


is recommended that vegetables be introduced before fruits, so that infants
don’t come to expect sweets at their meals. 
Non-allergenic foods should be rotated every five to six days to
minimize sensitization which may occur when the same foods are eaten once or
twice daily for five to seven consecutive days. 


for Introducing Solid Foods


6-9 months:  Hypoallergenic pureed, mashed foods
containing iron; 1-2 Tbs./day.  The
fruits may be too sweet to introduce at 6 months and are better at 71/2 to 9


            Carrots                                     Blackberries                             Prunes

            Squash                                     Broccoli                                   Cherries

            Yam                                         Apricots                                  Banana           

            Jerusalem Artichoke                  Grapes                                    Cauliflower

            Kiwi                                          Peaches                                  Sprouts
(Blended in water)

            Pears                                        Beets                                      Applesauce


9 months:          Food high in zinc and good for immune system; 2-4
Tbs./day.  The oatmeal, lima beans, and
millet may be difficult to digest.


            Sweet Potato                            Cabbage                                 Oatmeal

            Papaya                                     Blueberries                              Lima Beans     

            String Beans                             Nectarines                               Potato            

            Black Strap Molasses                Split Pea Soup                        Millet               

            Mashed Potato                         Artichoke                                 Apples

            Peas                                         Basmati


12 months:        Foods high in zinc and bulk; 4-10 Tbs./day.


            Acorn Squash                           Barley                                      Chard

            Tofu                                         Yogurt                                     Parsnips

            Asparagus                                Avocado                                 Egg Yolk

            Goats Milk- Fresh                      Brown Rice                              Onions

            Garlic                                        Spiralina                                  Honey


18 months:        Foods high in B vitamins and calcium; allow infant to eat
amount desired.


            Tahini                                        Lamb                                       Salad greens

            Kelp                                         Eggplant                                 Rye

            Beets And Greens                     Chicken                                   Rutabaga

            Beans                                       Fish                                         Buckwheat

21 months:        Foods high in protein to support growth.


            Eggs                                        Almond
Butter                          Turkey

            Walnuts                                    Cornish Hen                             Beef Liver

            Cashew Butter                           Pineapple                                Wheat

            Brewer’s Yeast                          Oranges                                  Lentils             


2-3 years old:


            Sunflower Seeds                       Corn                                        Lentils

            Peanut Butter                            Clams                                      Soy
products, soy milk, etc.


4 years old:


            Milk products                                                                            Cottage
Cheese            Yogurt


[1]  Kajosaari, M.; Saarinen, U., Prophylaxis of
atopic disease by six months’ total food elimination.  Evaluation of 135 exclusively breastfed
infants of atopic families.  Acta. Paed.
Scand. (1983) 72, 3, 411-4.