Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Baby-Led Weaning Question

fuentes from Life at 335 asked a great question in my comments, and I want to make sure it gets answered (for the both of us). :-)

She asks..."I gave Keelin banana pieces but when she picked it up she couldn't figure out where it went (it was in the palm of her hand), I think I made it too small. I am super worried about her choking, how big can you make the pieces????)"

I also experienced something like that, only it was more the fact that the banana pieces (when cut really thin like long french fries) broke apart and the twins had a really tough time picking up the broken pieces and getting them into their mouths. I would pick it up and hold it in my hand so that they had a better chance, but they still were having a tough time with it. I don't want to make the pieces *too* big around because of course I don't want them to choke on it, but then again, when Dovid finally got a piece into his mouth he was more licking it than anything else...and then spat it out cuz he had no idea what to do with it. lol Any thoughts??


  1. Elana, can you explain this baby-led weaning thing? I thought that was when you let your children nurse until they're several years old, but that doesn't seem to be what you're talking about.

  2. I can help with the question and with the comment.

    Slice the bananas just on an angle. The shape is really not one that lends itself to choking, and as you said, banana falls apart pretty quickly.

    If Dovid played with it, licked it, and then spat it out, he's getting the idea! He got a little bit of it and will eventually get more.

    I will add, when they first start swallowing any amount of food, they will make some darned funny faces and may even gag a bit. Do not panic and do not rush in and take the food out of their mouths. They'll freak unnecessarily. Unless they are choking. Babybanana.biz gives a great description of gagging vs choking.

    Baby-Led Weaning describes the intro to solids, where "weaning" means starting solids to replace milk feedings, eventually. It means that the child sets the pace for when solid food, eaten as food and not mush, becomes primary in his/her diet, rather than the parent spoon feeding mush when the child may or may not be ready and then having to go through a whole separate process to start "real" food.

    Child-led weaning for breastfeeding can go along with this but doesn't have to.

    Regardless of the type (mama milk, formula, whole milk), milk is supposed to be a central part of the diet for the first two years which is why the World Health Organization recommends breastfeeding for 2 years (exclusively for 6 months and then introduce food).