Question: My girl is turning 4 months old soon, any advice on what types of solid food to introduce to my baby?

Answer: Traditionally, rice cereal has been recommended. Recent research suggests that while that can be the first food but we should have whole-grain cereals and move faster towards vegetables, fruits and meat. Babies who remain on refined rice cereal for fear of allergies from other proteins eventually end up obese with a high chance of diabetes mellitus.

baby first solid food

Babies are recommended to be weaned between 4 – 7 months now, especially if they are completely breastfed and are not gaining weight well enough. Exclusively breastfed infants are also at higher risk of iron deficiency.

baby and bowl

Research shows that earlier weaning does not increase allergies if weaning does not occur before 4 months. In fact, late weaning is associated with increased allergic tendencies and also feeding difficulties as they cannot learn to swallow well or handle coarser textures.

Related Read: Weaning Your Baby After 6 Months

By Dr Nancy Tan, Paediatrician, Sub-specialty in Gastroenterology, Hepatology & Nutrition, SBCC Baby & Child Clinic.

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