Nurturing life Your reference in perinatal nutrition, from pregnancy to childhood

Should we incorporate finger foods as soon as we introduce solid foods?

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By : Nurturing Life's Nutrition Team | Montreal Diet Dispensary

Health Canada recommendation regarding the introduction of solid foods are as follows:

Incorporate finger foods at the same time as solid foods.

Babies should be encouraged to eat foods with different textures right when solid foods are first introduced. It is recommended that some of these solid foods be finger foods.

This way, children learn to feed themselves right from the start. The introduction of solid foods meshes with an important period in oral and motor development. Finger foods allow children to discover different textures with their fingers, as well as different smells and flavors.

Finger foods, as well as pureed foods, should be offered when introducing solid foods to ensure that the child eats a variety of foods.  Finger foods typically offered are, for example, vegetables and ripe fruits, like avocados and bananas, or cooked meat and poultry.

It is advised to offer small quantities at t time to limit wasting as the baby learns to eat!

Babies may vomit while learning to eat food that is not pureed. This is quite normal because they are learning to move food around in their mouths, from front to back.

Risk of choking is low since the child decides how fast he eats and has overall better control with finger foods compared to when he is fed by spoon.

In short

Offering foods with different textures when introducing solid foods is important for oral and motor development. By offering children pureed and whole foods with age-appropriate textures, they receive a varied diet that allows them to grow safely.