What is Baby-led Weaning (BLW)?
Baby-led weaning excludes purees and allows children to feed themselves as soon as they begin solid foods. Greater hand-eye coordination, improved chewing abilities, and the encouragement of healthy eating habits are just a few of the advantages.
What to Look for in Baby-Led Weaning First Foods:
Three factors should be considered when preparing baby-led weaning first foods: texture, size, and ease of swallowing.
Texture - Foods should be soft enough to smash with slight pressure between your thumb and forefinger. Choking hazards exist in raw hard fruits and vegetables, so steam or roast them first.
Size - Size is also important, both for safety and because what good is food if a baby can't pick it up? Because only a few 6- to 8-month-olds have mastered the pincer grasp (thumb and index finger), they will pick up food with their entire hand. Cut foods the length and width of an adult pinky finger to make it easier.
Ease - Keep in mind that many foods are slick! Leave some of the peel on bananas and avocados, for example, to make food simpler for your infant to grab. With some foods, a crinkle cutter can also be useful.
Some Examples Include:
Soft raw fruits including bananas, peaches, very ripe pears, melon, avocado, and strawberries come in long, easy-to-grasp chunks that are ideal for baby-led weaning first foods. To make bananas and avocados easier to grasp, Stasenko suggests cleaning them and serving them half peeled.
Eggs are a great source of protein, iron, and fat, all of which babies require on a daily basis, and they're also relatively simple to cook. Babies can eat boiling eggs with a toast soldier, scrambled eggs, or omelette strips.
Meat and fish
At this period of development, cooked meat and fish supply the iron, protein, and fat that newborns require. Stasenko like soft meatballs, small steak slivers, and chicken. "It's fine if your kid only sucks and gnaws at first; that's how he/she will learn to eat."
Whether plain or spread with a little butter, olive oil, hummus, or nut butter for added nutrients, cut toast into long graspable pieces. Stasenko notes, "This can be a pretty mess-free breakfast or snack." To keep the bread from being too dry, lightly toast it.
"Broccoli florets are easy to handle for young hands, and they're a great way to introduce savoury foods," explains Stasenko. Just make sure not to steam them so much that they become mushy, as this would make them difficult to grip.