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 suggest 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.
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.
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.
Dr Nancy Tan
Paediatrician, Sub-specialty in Gastroenterology, Hepatology & Nutrition
SBCC Baby & Child Clinic
SBCC Baby & Child Clinic (Gleneagles)
6 Napier Road
#07-01/03 Gleneagles Medical Centre
Tel: 6235 6706/ 6397 6966 (Hotline)