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My 6 month old has a breastfeed in the morning then a break and has rice cereal. Most of the time she will have 2 tablespoons and finish this.

I give her a different food at lunch time after the breastfeed. She doesn't see to be interested. She has had 1.5 teaspoons of sweet potato and avocado. She doesn't like fruit and other vegetables. I try each new food for 3 days as recommended.

When can I be offering her a solid food for dinner? How much food can you offer a baby at one meal? Should I persist for a longer period of time with the one food?

All the foods I have tried have been cooked and pureed, except banana and avocado. All the foods have been given as a single food, that is not mixed with another food. Foods given are sweet potato, broccoli, pumpkin, pear, apple, avocado and carrot.

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2 Answers

up vote 10 down vote accepted

(The tl;dr version: keep trying. Take a break, then try again. And if that doesn't work, try again.)

Babycenter would seem to indicate that you're doing all of this correctly:

You can introduce solids any time between 4 and 6 months if your baby is ready. Until then, breast milk or formula provides all the calories and nourishment your baby needs and can handle. His digestive system simply isn't ready for solids until he nears his half-birthday. [...] Introduce other solids gradually, one at a time, waiting at least three days after each new food. This way you'll get a heads-up if your baby has an allergic reaction to one of them

So, it seems you're doing the right thing! Now, your other questions are a little more detailed. The link I provided you above should address most of your concerns, but the relevant portions I'll quote directly.

It seems most children are initially disinterested in solids; chances are you're offering her just the right amount:

If your baby doesn't seem very interested in eating off the spoon, let him smell and taste the food or wait until he warms up to the idea of eating something solid. Don't add cereal to your baby's bottle or he may not make the connection that food is to be eaten sitting up and from a spoon.

Begin with a once-a-day feeding, whenever it's convenient for you and your baby, but not at a time when your baby seems tired or cranky. Your baby may not eat much in the beginning, but give him time to get used to the experience. Some babies need practice keeping food in their mouths and swallowing.

Once he gets used to his new diet, he'll be ready for a few tablespoons of food a day. If he's eating cereal, gradually thicken the consistency by adding less liquid. As the amount your baby eats increases, add another feeding.

(Emphasis mine, above.)

Questions about food texture have been asked before, but I'll reiterate the advice.

Keep in mind that it is normal for babies to balk the first time — or the first many times — they experience food other than breast milk, formula, or liquidy purees. That's why it's important to keep offering different foods to babies who are developmentally ready — especially healthy ones like vegetables. [...]

Textures take getting used to, just like tastes. "Kids often don't like the texture of avocado but are won over by the taste," Altmann says.

So, keep offering your child the solids. It won't be a problem until she's about a year old. If she hasn't transitioned to solids by then, then you ought to consult with your healthcare professional.

Finally, if you're willing to take a "risk," offer her some, ah, more adventurous options instead.

  • Sour fruits (cherries, plums)
  • Stewed meat (sometimes even spicy!)
  • Cruciferous veggies (cauliflower, turnips)
  • Fish
  • Whole grains (quinoa, millet)

For more information, check out this feeding guide. Also, the comments to this question may be enlightening, though you might find this thread more relevant to your experience.

Finally, What To Expect has a lot of information about the transition to solids, and they're kind of the go-to source for most "westerners" in my experience.

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When I was feeding my children baby food, I read in a parenting magazine that it takes 7-10 tries of a food before your child knows whether or not they like it. Some foods they like right away, others you have to keep trying.

I'm pretty sure I tried this out, and my kids were stubborn enough that if they didn't like it the first time, they weren't ever going to like it.

I don't think I started solid foods until after age 1, but that's something like an adult would normally eat for dinner. You could always start out with soft breads, mashed potatoes and jello.

As for the issue with how much to offer.....I would just offer a couple spoonfuls of whatever you decide to give to your baby, just to test the water. If he/she doesn't like it, move on to the next food. Or you can always just put spoonfuls on the baby's plate and have the child eat themselves.

It's pretty messy but my kids loved it! They probably ended up getting more on their face than in their mouth, but at least they weren't picky about what they ate when they got to eat it themselves. :)

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