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Introducing Solids

As babies grow, so do their nutritional needs. By about six months of age, most babies are ready to explore their first solid foods. You’ll need to be ready too, so it’s best to plan ahead when introducing solids. Every baby is different and the time of food introduction and their appetite may differ slightly between babies. Be sure to consult with your baby’s doctor about when to introduce solids to your little one.

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Baby's First Solid Foods: Baby’s First Feeding in Ten Steps

Your baby is ready for solid foods! There are just a few more things to consider in preparation for his first taste. If you aren't sure whether your baby is ready to start on solid foods, talk to your doctor and find out more here.

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Making Your Own Baby Food

The correct preparation and storage of baby food is as vital to your baby's well-being as the ingredients are. Whether you’re making your own baby food or purchasing commercially prepared food, these guidelines can help to ensure your child safely enjoys the full nutritional benefit of their food at home. If you choose to make your own baby food, keep in mind that Canadian health experts recommend that baby’s first foods should be iron-rich.

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Baby's First Foods: A Step-by-Step Guide

Let the fun begin! By about 6 months, when your little one is ready for solid foods, you’ll need to be ready too. We’ve compiled this guide to help you make the transition to solid foods easier for you and your baby. We have more information for you if you aren’t sure whether your baby is ready for solid foods, and may also want to also consider talking to your baby’s doctor.

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Iron Needs for Your Growing Baby

Iron is a vital nutrient that contributes to the normal growth and development of infants and young children. Iron is also essential in building red blood cells that transport oxygen throughout your baby’s little body. When babies don’t get enough iron they can become iron deficient and may be less active than usual and could develop more slowly. Healthy full term infants are born with iron stores, which meet their needs until about 6 months of age, when these initial reserves may start to run out.

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Feeding Tips for Older Babies

Your baby is now used to eating solids and may be grabbing at the spoon or picking up food by herself. This means she is ready for more self-feeding, a whole new messy adventure! Continue to offer new foods and textures, especially a wide variety of iron-rich foods, and fruits and vegetables and remember to be patient; you may need to offer foods as many as 10 times before she accepts them.

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Fun Recipes with Baby Cereal

As your baby gets older, you can help ensure that she's getting enough iron in her diet by adding Nestlé® Gerber® Baby Cereal to recipes. You can try these fun recipes once she's comfortable eating finger foods and is used to a wide variety of foods and textures, by about 12 months.

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Enjoying Finger Foods

Once you notice your baby begin to grasp small objects, he is ready to begin feeding himself. It's time for introducing finger foods! It’s more than just fun, as finger foods add texture to the diet and encourage self-feeding to help with oral and motor development. The foods in the list below are nutritious and, when prepared appropriately, are safe finger food choices. Remember, babies should always be supervised whenever they're eating or drinking.

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Safe Food Handling: Making Safe Food Choices for Your Little One

By now you've noticed that everything seems to make its way into your little one’s mouth. Once he’s able grasp small objects, eating those little goodies is exactly what he'll try to do. His tiny teeth are ready to be put to good use. Although he's only using them for cutting, not really chewing, that doesn't mean your child is ready for just any food you offer. Even though it's now finger food time in his life, you still need to be careful about what foods he grabs with those little fingers.

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At What Age Can Babies Have Cow's Milk

Canadian health experts recommend breastfeeding exclusively for the first six months, and sustained for up to two years or longer with appropriate complementary feeding, with a focus on iron-rich first foods. Breastfeeding is important for the nutrition, immunologic protection, growth, and development of infants and toddlers. Even after your baby starts eating solid foods, his primary source of nourishment should still be breast milk or infant formula, if you chose to supplement or exclusively formula feed.

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Toddler Nutrition: Nutrition for Your Growing Toddler

By one year of age, your little one should be eating a variety of foods from the four food groups in Canada's Food Guide. He’s likely discovering new tastes, textures and skills. As he continues to grow, new food challenges may arise. Variety becomes more important and eating as a family takes centre stage.

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Nutrition for Toddlers: How Does it Change?

You may feel that because your toddler is moving so much more, she needs more food to provide extra fuel, but she'll actually start to eat less. Once her first birthday passes, your tiny tot's growth slows down, so she needs less food than what you were providing in those important first 12 months. Besides, your little one has way too much going on now to think about eating.

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