Guide to Healthy Baby Food

Healthiest baby food options and recipes

Healthy baby food is a topic I feel very strongly about and will definitely step onto the soapbox for! Like many aspects of life, convenience doesn’t equal quality and many of the current pre-made baby food options are definitely NOT the best first foods for babies!

What do Babies Need?

Nutrition for the wee ones is a favorite talking point of mine, mainly because it is so important. Since babies and kids have much smaller bodies, any harmful foods can do much more proportionate damage, but this also means that healthy foods can do wonders for them.

I also must confess, on this note, that I did follow the recommendations for first foods with our first child, and I think this is part of the reason why he was our pickiest eater for a long time (though he now happily eats most foods thanks to our “food rules”).

I truly believe that the healthiest first food for babies is breast milk. Recent research supports this and even formula companies agree that breast milk is best. Breast milk is full of fatty acids, antibodies, nutrients, protein and fat and is a truly perfect and complete food for babies.

Research also shows that breast feeding drastically reduces the instance of SIDS (of every 87 deaths from SIDS, only 3 are breastfed babies). Studies also show numerous benefits to the mother, including decreased risk of cancers (breast, ovarian, cervical, endometrial), lower incidence of postpartum depression, and reduced chance of heart disease, stroke and diabetes.

I completely understand that there are cases when breastfeeding is not possible, and thankfully, there are some great organic options for formula in times when breastfeeding is not an option (this is the what I would use if I’m ever unable to nurse a baby).

Moving to Solid Foods

While breastfeeding is the perfect food for baby, at some point, baby will want or need solid food. Ask most mothers you know what their pediatricians recommend as first foods for their babies and most will say oatmeal or rice cereal. After that, most parents get the recommendation to add in fruit purees, starchy veggies like squash, various watered down mixtures of processed meats, over-steamed veggies and eventually a nauseating array of fluffy, puffy, and sweet snacks or juices.

This is what I did with my first child because I didn’t know any better, and this is the advice that many new moms get daily for baby food. It turns out that not only is this not what mothers do in many parts of the world (including countries with much lower rates of obesity and allergies) but research may not even support it!

Don’t Start with Rice

The most common recommended first food in the US is iron-fortified rice cereal. This seems logical at first glance, because babies naturally need more iron than they receive from breastmilk at around age six months. At the same time, iron-fortified processed foods are a relatively modern invention and many moms question the idea of giving a fortified food rather than a food that naturally contains iron and other nutrients.

It also seems logical that the fact that babies have an increasing need for nutrients like Iron at around 6 months should be a clue both to what first foods should be and as to their actual need for these nutrients. If a baby is going to need a certain nutrient at a certain time that isn’t supplied by breastmilk, it makes sense that there would be a built in way for baby to get this nutrient that doesn’t involve modern fortified foods.

And it turns out that there is…

As Heather explains in this comprehensive post, there are several important reasons for the iron need at this age and a logical and natural way that babies get it:

  1. Many pathogenic bacteria (including E.coli) need Iron to survive and the missing Iron may be a way of protecting baby from these bacteria as he or she starts eating solids.
  2. Babies also at age 4-6 months start wanting to spend more time on the ground on their bellies in preparation for crawling. In a non-sterile world, this put babies in contact with dirt on a daily basis and dirt is a natural source of Iron and Zinc.

It also makes sense that as a baby does have a dietary need for more minerals like Iron and Zinc, we should give them foods that naturally contain these nutrients without the need for fortified and artificial nutrients. As rice is not naturally a source of these nutrients…. perhaps it isn’t intended to be a first food for baby!

All About that Amylase

Another reason that rice cereal and other starchy foods aren’t the best first choice for baby is that at age 4-6 months, babies don’t make enough of an enzyme called amylase to break down most carbohydrates. This means that starchy foods like rice can be irritating to baby’s digestive system and lead to discomfort in some babies.

In fact, without enough amylase, these foods can literally sit and start to decompose in the gut, which may increase the likelihood of allergies to this particular food! Interestingly, allergies to rice are on the rise in recent decades, along with allergies and intolerances to fruits, peanuts, wheat and dairy (there is some speculation that adding these foods too early may even facilitate a dairy intolerance because it aggravates the immune system).

Given the lack of amylase, it seems odd that starchy and sweet foods like grains and fruits are recommended as first baby foods. Logically,  habituating a baby to the taste of sweet foods first would make it difficult to introduce less sugary (yes, fruit does have sugar) foods like vegetables later (and this is one reason that in countries like France, these foods are introduced later after baby has learned to like a wide variety of healthy foods).

So, if rice and other starches aren’t a natural source of Iron and babies don’t have the enzymes to digest them properly… why are we encouraged to give them as a first food? As a wild guess, I’d suggest that it has more to do with rice being one of the most subsidized crops in the US (along with corn and soybeans), but that is a (long) post for another day…

Healthy Baby Foods I Recommend

In many parts of the world, starches and sweet foods are not given as a first food at all. Instead, in many places, they give animal foods like broth and tiny pieces of meat.

Surprised?

Think about this… meat is a natural source of iron, which babies naturally need, and doesn’t require amylase to be digested, making it a logical first baby food and the choice of many cultures around the world.

Meats are a complete source of protein, unlike rice, beans and vegetables and provide more calories and nutrients per ounce than other foods. While this is common sense in much of the world, in the US, meats are some of the last foods to be introduced and first meats are often processed foods like hot dogs!

If we look at the enzymes in a baby’s digestive system at the age of first foods, proteins and fats are a logical and much safer choice. After much research, the first baby food that I’ve given to all of my children has changed drastically over the years.  I wait until at least 6 months to introduce any solid foods.

This is the order that I personally introduce foods now:

Broth

This was never suggested with my first child and while I am grateful he doesn’t have any allergies and is a great eater now, I wish I’d known what I know now to be able to give him more nourishing first foods.

Broth may seem like an odd first food for a baby, but after my third child struggled with eczema and dairy intolerance (after being born via c-section) and we used the GAPS diet to help reverse his problems, I realized that the same reasons broth is a superfood for gut health during GAPS makes it a logical first baby food as well!

Broth is recommended for those with gut problems to help “heal and seal” the gut and improve the symptoms of leaky gut. Babies are naturally born with a leaky gut because this allows beneficial antibodies and enzymes from mom’s milk to pass into the bloodstream and increase immunity. Eventually, the gut needs to seal so that particles from foods and pathogens don’t enter the bloodstream as well.

This is another part of the wisdom of giving broth as a first food, and perhaps one of the reasons that this is a first food choice of cultures around the world.

Broth is also a great source of Gelain, amino acids, bio-available minerals and other nutrients. As a liquid, it is also an easy transition for baby! I typically feed my babies broth as their only “real food” for about a month before adding in any other food to help make sure the gut is ready.

Make your own with a recipe like this one or you can order high-quality pre-made broth here.

Meat + Liver

Next, I’ll introduce pastured grass-fed high quality meats and liver that have been lightly cooked and very finely grated to the broth. Again, this seems counter-intuitive as a first food, but meat is a complete source of protein and amino acids and liver is nature’s multivitamin.

Of course, you want to make sure that these are extremely high quality meats from ethical and healthy sources, but even a small amount of these foods will help provide baby the Iron and Zinc they need at this stage and these foods are less likely to be allergenic than many other foods.

Mashed Banana + Avocado

At this stage, I’ll add in some low-allergen fruits and vegetables like bananas and avocados. I often mash these into the meat or broth. Bananas (though I don’t personally like the taste of them) are one of the few fruits that contain amylase, making them easier to digest for most babies. I don’t like to give them straight since they are sweeter, and mix them with meat or liver so baby doesn’t get too used to sweeter flavors right away.

Avocado is packed with beneficial fats and another good first fruit or vegetable choice.

Butter + Other Vegetables

At this point, I will add in grass-fed pastured butter (for the healthy fats and Vitamin K2) and other non-starchy vegetables. I add vegetables one at a time and usually about a week apart.

Vegetables have a much higher nutrient content than grains and less chance of an allergic response, so I introduce almost all vegetables before any grains, including rice, are introduced. Unfortunately, the convenient jar baby food on grocery store shelves doesn’t have anywhere near the nutrients of fresh steamed vegetables (and I’m not a fan of pureed food- see below). Ever read the labels? Besides the token vegetable or fruit, jar baby food contains mostly water and small amounts of added fillers to keep everything the same consistency.

This is one case where it truly is, hands down, cheaper to make your own baby food. What you pay for in the store is so much water and filler that you could make huge amounts of fresh vegetables for your baby for less. All you need is a vegetables and water or broth to steam or boil them. Homemade baby food can be frozen in small amounts for later, making it convenient.

The easiest way I’ve found to do this is to start adding tiny bits of chopped veggies to baby’s broth and boiling until soft. At this point, I strain out the soft veggies, let them cool and let baby feed herself.

A Note About Eggs

Egg yolks are often recommended as a first food (even before broth) in many real food sources and I know many people who introduced egg yolks with great results. After much research and consideration, I decided not to introduce eggs as a first food for my babies because I personally have reacted to eggs in the past and showed antibodies to eggs in blood tests.

Either way, egg whites are not recommended at a young age, as they do have the potential for an allergic reaction, but for my personal situation, I decided to forego eggs altogether until an older age. Of course, this is not to say that eggs are not a good first food for some babies, I just felt that there were better first foods for mine.

Baby Led Eating

Another thing that I think has contributed greatly to my kids being adventurous and independent eaters is that I don’t puree things. I did with my first, and soon realized that he just wanted to grab the spoon and do it himself anyway. With our other kids, I made sure that all foods were cut into small enough pieces that they were not a choking hazard and were cooked extremely softly so that I could just place them on the table for baby.

Not only does baby love feeding himself the little pieces of food, but this usually also keeps him busy enough and happy enough that I can serve the rest of the family and even eat something myself!

The Baby Food Bottom Line

Baby food doesn’t have to be complicated, and in most places in the world, it isn’t. Many cultures don’t have entire corporations devoted to producing watered-down purees for baby, or a whole market for machines, containers and gizmos to make your own baby food.

In some cultures, mom just chews a bit of her food and feeds to baby (sounds gross but it can actually help digestion). In countries like France, babies are given non-starchy foods first and it is said to spoil baby’s taste buds to give starches first. Many foods in France are broth based, and baby receives quite a bit of broth and meat as first foods.

There are, of course, as many ideas of what makes a correct “first food” as there are food options. Mine is simply this: Start with nutrient-dense and non-starchy whole foods that have a low chance of causing an allergic response and let baby be as independent as possible when eating.

What type of baby food do you use? Share below!

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  1. Katie,
    the only other site that I feel is worth looking at is Wholesomebabyfood.com – great suggestions on how to prepare your own. After using commercially prepared with my first (organic, but still not fresh! 🙁 I’ve decided to make my own for Alden. He’s 7 1/2 months and although I’d love to feed him finger foods and/or small chunks, he seems to have a STRONG gag reflex :/ so, steam, steam away I go! I just LOVE all your recipe ideas and your site is amazing, keep at it!

      • Hi there! I was wondering your thoughts on giving bone broth or liver as a first food since I have read a few other natural sites that recommend those first instead of avocado. I currently have a three month old and I am trying to do as much research as I can to give her the healthiest start I can and it is quite overwhelming! Also do you have any opinion on when to start solids with your child? And would you let them feed themselves or would you spoon feed at first? Thank you in advance!

    • How sad ..I really like these type of articles but then came the big gluten word …The thing about trends not foods is they are normally wrong ! what percentage of people actually have “proven” lectin reactions ? the gluten hate is a trend ..sad a site called wellness mama is following trends rather then evidence ..discredited

      • I agree. My own mother fed me only steamed vegetables when I was being introduced to solid foods. I’m a huge supporter of not introducing fruits and high-sugar content to babies before veggies. I love the idea of buying organic, though I’ll readily admit that most of the population just can’t afford that. I’m a huge health nut and always have been. But I absolutely LOATHE this idea that all grains are terrible for you. They aren’t. They’re difficult for some, but absolutely fine for most. That said, people consider “grains” to be white pasta, donuts, or lucky charms. Of course these things are unhealthy. Of course people gain unbelievable amounts of weight when eating them. But the anti-gluten crowd doesn’t seem to understand that the average person doesn’t eat the right proportion of vegetables and proteins in relation to carbohydrates, and that the average person does not eat whole grain foods. So…everything about the grain gets the blame when really there are multiple factors for why someone would be unhealthy whilst eating them. I’ve only named two examples.

        • The biggest problem with grains and legumes is they are not being prepared in the traditional methods that reduced all the problematic items contained in them to tolerable levels because those preparation methods take time. People are all in a hurry or trying to cut corners to “save money” in modern society. Fine, if you want to cut time then cut the grains you aren’t willing to spend the time properly preparing and eat the foods that don’t require that kind of prep time to be made tolerably safe.

          • Would you mind posting links to some of those studies citing that babies don’t have the enzyme to digest grains? I have a 6 month old and would be interested in reading them. Thank you!

        • Actually, gentlemen, it is scientifically proven that children, under the average age of 2 years, do not even produce the enzyme required to break down grains. There are many studies out there showing this. Introducing grains of any kind to a child under 1-2 (this number differs, they will produce the enzymes once their molars come in) CAN (not always) cause future digestive or allergen issues.
          This is not anti-gluten, this is anti-grain-of-any-kind because they literally cannot digest it until their body is mature enough. It isn’t “trendy” to feed your children healthy, it’s instinct.

          • Grain or carbs, babies can digest carb, amalayse is found in the saliva, it is what begins the break down of carbs in the mouth, yes guten sensitivity are real, but there are different levels, my cousin is celiac and she is the one whole told me that, she can eat certain grains but there are people who can’t eat any. It depends on how sensitive you are.

      • Not eating gluten isn’t a trend it’s being an educated person who has taken the time to research countless studies. Followed up by 90 percent of cutting edge doctors scientists and holistic practitioners.

        • Agree- I am a health professional- with training at Duke Medicine. Specificaly- gluten (whether a sensativity or allergy- celiacs) affects a great deal of the population, most unaware of it. Mainstream medicine is behind with this. Functional medicine is not- thankfully. My advice is make sure you know how to read and search for research articles and their counterparts. Writings in magaznes or posts do not count as research based studies. What wellness mama is doing is making people aware. I comend her for her site, dedication, and credibility. Keep up the good work!

      • I agree with Tonya. Anyone who thinks that “gluten hate” is just a fad has no idea the devastating effects it can have on a body. My dad’s liver was failing and he was dying at 38 years old because he’s a celiac and didn’t know. Its a serious condition and people who dismiss it and make little of it are hurtful towards those of us who are just trying to stay healthy. Tonya is right, the way we process our foods is making them poisonous to our bodies, which is why celiac and other sensitivities are becoming more and more common.

      • Shame in you, the original gluten wheat called emmer wheat was easily digestible and healthy for people but in the 1950s they tampered with it and really stuffed up the molecules swelling them into indigestible proportions- literally. Then in the 1970s the whole world took on this new crop and this is why it’s become what it is. The original emmer wheat was healthy. So do your research you ignorant person. Well done Katie!

        • I was wondering if anyone was going to bring up that point. The grains of today are not the grains from when our grandparents were young. One local Chiropractor talks about how have u noticed bread doesn’t go stale. I remember bread and flour didn’t last long. (Some of you may be to young to remember that) Flour got bug and bread went stale. Notice how that doesn’t happen any more. It is because the grains of today are not only different from the 50’s but it is processed differently too. So it has caused people to become gluten sensitive or intolerant. Everyone is different and what works for one my not for another.

      • Indeed–where is this data and how did all of us survive with so much gluten in our world. All this veggies are a must, for sure; but grains play a huge positive role in our bodies. Yikes.

      • Personally, I think that the only trend here is wanting to have your say about whether or not humans can tolerate grains or gluten. Your comments don’t really have anything all do do with the article?Bottom line, why would you want to feed your baby weird grains that don’t even compare to the nutritional content of vegetables and meat. Its not about what babies will “tolerate” its about what they will THRIVE on!

        Well done Katie you’re doing a great job, I love your website and advice!

      • The problem with grains and legumes are the compounds in them that decrease the absorption of vitamins and minerals by binding to them, and the effect they have on promoting increased intestinal permeability. These effects happen to everyone, even if you don’t have an allergy to gluten or lectins. My functional medicine physician has educated me on this, and has concluded that these compounds promote autoimmunity.

      • Michelle,

        Please understand that we are dealing with Gov’t run healthcare and Gov’t run food……..Gluten has become an issue in our generation, no thanks to the GMO and altering of nutrients in our foods. You would be amazed at the problems gluten causes…..mainly the fact that it is pure food for Candida…..if you do not know what Candida is, please look it up on Naturalnews.com NOT GOOGLE!

        Food for thought

      • In defense of this site, it is like others it is strictly informational – Wellness Mama has done her research and does what she feels is right for her family. You are obviously doing the same for your family.

        There are many drawbacks to wheat these days – from it being genetically modified, to our digestive systems not being about to digest and assimilate. Do what you feel is best for your family!!

    • Mandy, I’m sorry you feel “Gluten Allergy/sensativity” is a big farce & Kate is some how just following along! Since I have a Granddaughter who has a very HIGH sensativity to Gluten, And her GrandMother is a full blown Celiac patient. I felt the need to tell you you’re Wrong! It’s not a FAD it’s a fact & if you had a family member who suffered from this terrible sensativity or allergy you certainly wouldn’t be sAying that. Do some research on the gluten content In wheat you’ll see it’s gone from 3% years & years ago to being a GMO (geneticLly Modified) & Now has 26%! No wonder the gluten sensativity/allergy & Celiac has risen so dramatically!

    • I was unable to breastfeed as bubba wouldn’t latch! It wasn’t without a considerable amount of effort, many leche appointments and a few lactation consultants without any luck! I wanted to suffocate that baby into my boob and feed him “normal”! But he had other plans and I had to be ok with that! To add to my depression, he had considerable colic and gas, and within a few days after leaving the hospital (spent 5 days there) he became lethargic. He stopped moving, crying, pooping, just was a ball of jello! I knew something was wrong, despite everyone telling me he was fine. Even my mother – who ha a successfully raised three babies, told me he as just tired! I felt that their was something wrong! I immidiately rushed him to the doctor she had never seen a baby go into full lathargy before and was determined to figure out what was going on! As a first time mother, I was extremely frightened. I cried and the only thing to soothe me was my baby in my arms. I wouldn’t let go of him! After many tests and a few changing in formula she found that he was allergic to the milk protein in the formula. I wa a feeding him the best organic version I could find but he just couldn’t process it. We had to buy a him hypoallergenic version that was not o lay extremely costly but was choke full of fake ingredients and undoubtly chemicals! But we had no choice, I was only pumping about 2 ounces a day and baby demanded 3 ounce feedings.
      At a healthy one year old we now offer him a mixture of organic premade baby foods from companies I trust, homemade organic baby food which I prepare, organic steamed fruits and veggies, organic fresh meats, and gluten free grains, cereals and snacks. Baby is on a gluten free (family history of celiac), dairy free diet without any issues.

      **The moral of the story, each of us have to do what we think is best for our babies. And the best thing we can do is listen to our own instincts and intuition as mothers. No one will ever know your baby as much as you do! We need to support each other and help educate oneanother without bias or contempt. Most of us are newbies and struggling everyday with new challenges and concerns. Everyday we question ourselves and our decisions.

      Even if I don’t agree with everything in an article, I appreciate their perspective and do my own research no matter.

  2. I just found your site. What would you recommend as a beverage for my dairy-intake-produces-rashes 2.5year old? I have been feeding him a toddler soy formula since I stopped nursing when he turned 1. I feel so terrible after reading about how bad soy is for boys! 🙁

    • I would suggest coconut milk or coconut smoothies (coconut milk, coconut oil, small amount of fruit). You could also try making water kefir or kombucha for the probiotics, and most kids like the bubbly texture (similar to soda). In reality, if you are limiting his grains and processed foods, he won’t need as much calcium anyway, and will be absorbing it from food better. I have noticed that many kids with dairy allergies have an underlying gluten sensitivity as well, and benefit highly from going off grains. This especially sounds like it could be your son, because it is manifesting as a rash. Just make sure he gets lots of good proteins (meats, etc) and fats (coconut products, avocado, olives, etc) and veggies, and he won’t be missing anything from the dairy.

      • My son is 3 months old and he has esophageal reflux. I started out breastfeeding but couldn’t continue. I was so upset. I formula feed him now and its been a struggle to find the right kind for him. His pediatrician said to add rice or oatmeal cereal to help. After reading your info I don’t want to. My question is what would you suggest to help with the reflux

        • We went through something similar with our infant. We used plantain flour instead of the rice or oatmeal cereal. You can get organic plantain flour on the site named after the big South American river.

        • We went through this with our infant too. It was very difficult. Especially with all the formula shaming that goes on. It’s no wonder we have a higher rate of PPD!! It’s inevitable when you’re being verbally attacked in such a vulnerable state! But all that aside, I hope you found something that works for you & your baby. Our Ped suggested the rice as well, but we didn’t follow through with it & it eventually resolved on it’s own.

        • Ashley, I found this post and it’s from over a year ago but still would like to give my suggestions on babies with acid reflux in hopes that it helps a desperate mama out there. My oldest was diagnosed with esophageal reflux at only 4 months of age. He was prescribed medication but we decided to listen to the recommendation of the pharmacist instead. He recommended that, for bottle fed babies (I was unable to nurse for a lot of reasons and I was devastated!), to pace the feedings by pulling the bottle away from the baby’s mouth every 3-5 seconds to allow swallowing. He said it would take a while to see the results. After a couple of weeks of the projectile vomiting stopped and at 6 weeks, the acid reflux was completely gone. We continued pacing his feedings until he was drinking from a cup on his own.

        • My son had the same problem, all formulas contain either corn or soy and both are so highly allergenic. We actually put him on raw goat milk at 5 months and he didn’t ha Eva problem with that at all. He grew up just fine and now he’s 3 with no more eczema caused from the formula.

  3. You give great advice! My son’s first food beyond breastmilk was apple because he took it out of my hand and put it in his mouth, but avocado quickly followed, and at almost 1 yr he loves pretty much any vegetable we put in front of him.

    We went gluten free a month ago for allergy reasons (my son is also allergic to eggs, dairy, fish, pineapple) and now we’re going paleo. Since it is all fresh in my mind I was curious…you suggest giving babies green beans but aren’t they legumes? Is there something different about them that makes it okay?

    • From what I understand, since they are in the younger stage and still protected by the pod, they have much lower levels of phytic acid and lectins. Since they are also usually cooked, which reduces this further, they are not nearly of as much concern as beans. That being said, some very strict paleo eaters won’t eat them, and some will.

      • Thanks so much for the info! I’ve been expecting green beans to be something we’d occassionally “cheat” with anyway, because they are a favorite food of ours. It is nice to know they are at least better than the alternatives!

  4. When you say children don’t need grains, are you intending this to be crackers, bread and “snack” type stuff, or do you mean whole grains?  What do you recommend for them for energy without WHOLE grains like brown rice, millet, kamut, quinoa, etc?  Wheatberries, for example, are an excellent source of energy and still gluten and wheat free.

    • There is nothing in grains, whole or otherwise, that is not found in bigger amounts and more bio available in meats, vegetables, fruits
      and beneficial fats. There is absolutely to biological or other need for children, or anyone to eat grains.
      Wheatberries, for instance, may be a source of energy, but so are nutrient packed veggies or grassfed beef!

    • Wheatberries are just the wheat kernel, which when ground produce wheat flour. So it contains gluten and is wheat. And kamut and quinoa have gluten also.

  5. I did tons of research before deciding what to feed my baby, and started with egg yolk, cooked but still soft, at 4 months. He reacted at first, but after a brief pause, he loved it. I started him on meats next, since babies have all the equipment to handle meats and fats… because that’s what breastmilk is made of. So, after that we did the vegetables and fruits, one at a time, and at 10 months I started plain yogurt, the fattest and best I could find. (I got most of my information from the Weston A Price foundation.) Now he’s 11 months, and absolutely solid. Everyone comments on how good an eater he is,  and of course raises their eyebrows when I say he has never had cereal, pablum, teething biscuits, cookies… et. c. 🙂 I don’t think I will ever go back to an agrarian diet again! Not to mention that my (mainly) grain free pregnancy was like a walk in the park, with 7 hours of labor and only 25 minutes of pushing for a 10.5 lb baby! 😀

    • Ha ha ha! I also had a 10 pound baby in six hours. Pushed for 20 minutes, healed like a champ. All at home. And I also eat grains. I don’t understand the conspiracy theories against grains. They are perfectly fine for most individuals. If you’ve got allergies at all, but you don’t like the “traditional” answers you’ll hear at any given doctor’s office, try seeing someone who does energy healing with the NAET machine or an ASA. It’ll clear you right up. As someone who was near death due to allergies can attest: it’s more involved than to say that what you eat is the only culprit. Always, ALWAYS eat healthy, but there’s nothing wrong with eating grains. Or eating dairy. Every few years, it’s always the same. Some new idea that eating meat is terrible, or then it’s eating oil. Then it’s nuts. I will agree that certain people have sensitivities to these foods, and even fewer have violent reactions. But most of us are just fine. And allergies can be cleared up in different ways, if you’re not close minded to new ideas. By the by: I’m 5 ft 7 in, weigh 127, and am healthy as a horse. As the saying goes. I’ve eliminated grains and dairy before (as I mentioned above, I used to have horrific allergies. They came out of nowhere a few years ago and I got deathly ill. Looking back on that time in my life, though, combined with what I’ve learned in energetic work, I’m no longer surprised), and I was even less healthy than I am when I eat a balanced diet that has whole foods from the entire pyramid.

  6. Katie –
    I fed my daughter based on Weston Price information – breastfeeding, egg yolk first, banana, avocadoes, etc and made 90% of her baby food.  We did move twice  so it wasn’t always feasible…  She was very healthy as an infant and a great eater as a toddler.  She loves meat, I do feed her raw cheese and try to minimize her grains.  However, since she was about 14 months old she has had a runny nose almost constantly.  Several ear infections, etc.  After she turned 1 she did start eating grains – more than I would like, but we were on vacation in Spain for 2 weeks and it was hard to find easy to travel with alternatives.  And once she discovered crackers she wanted them…  She has been (mostly) grain free again for the last 3 months  which did seem to help, but now her runny nose is back with vengeance and I think even a sinus infection.  I’m so frustrated!  Any ideas?  She eats a little dairy (storebought kefir, raw cheese mostly).  The doctors here just say it’s allergies, because everyone has allergies here…..  There still has to be a better alternative than drugs all the time.  

    • Vit C Vit C Vit C!!  A natural antihystamine, water soluble and available in may fruits and veggies, as well as clean supplements.  You take (or give) to bowel tolerance, and then back down a bit.  I use it for myself and my girls, all have horrible allergies and haven’t had to use an allergy medicine in 2 years.

  7. Excellent summation! Both my daughters started with homemade organic vegetables at 6 months, and I echo the comment from Mandy. Wholesomebabyfood.com and homemade-baby-food-recipes.com were excellent resources for preparation instructions and combination ideas. I breastfed my girls until they were about 15 months. I did introduce oatmeal cereal to my first later on, mainly because I’d read that breastfed infants retain iron better when cereals are introduced later. But with my second, I had learned that cereal was really unnecessary in the first place and she never had a bite. Both my girls are very healthy and good eaters. They’ve since taken to crackers and other grains as toddlers, but I’m working on cutting back on grains in the entire family’s diet as I was recently introduced to WAPF. Looking forward to keeping up with your blog in the future!

  8. What do you recommend giving babies when breastfeeding is no longer an option?  My 15 month old has been breastfed from birth but am no longer producing enough milk.  He eats like a champ (paleo) but I’m not sure what to give him as a breast milk replacement.  Thanks for the help! 

    • Coconut milk is a great alternative if he is over a year old and you can add extra coconut oil to his foods to make sure he is still getting the medium chain fatty acids and the lauric acid. Hope that helps…
      -Katie

      • What if the baby is NOT over a year old (8 months) but we don’t drink cow’s milk? Breastfeeding is still primary food source, but I’m wanting to mix baby cereal with something…almond/coconut or rice milk? She is not very interested in eating food yet but I’m slowly introducing real foods to her along with oatmeal…can I mix it with one of the other milks? I gave her vanilla rice milk with the oatmeal and it’s the only time she seemed interested in eating it.

          • It’s probably not the greatest idea to give a baby flavored and sweetened “milk” made from a refined grain that super quickly turns to glucose in the bloodstream, either.

      • Hi Katie, what would you recommend if baby is under a year old and can’t breastfeed anymore due to surgery and mom isn’t pumping much output? I need a milk to supplement BM and can’t get raw milk in Ontario.

        • This might be a little too late for you but goats milk is a great alternative to cows milk. Raw would be best but the powdered one is really good too. I use (since day 1 after my baby was born) Mt. Capra brand. They have a whole powdered goats milk and also an amazing recipe on their site for making your own “baby formula”. That is the recipe we have used since our guy was born ( he was 12.4 lbs, no diabetes, but my milk has never come in earlier than a week after birth so I couldn’t starve the poor child!) We absolutly LOVE the Mt. Capra formula. He is three months old now, has never even been remotely sick (despite five other siblings always touching him) has gained weight normally (he’s 16 lbs now) and sleeps well. You can buy it on thier site or amazon.

  9. My daughter is almost 5 months old so I’m just learning more about what they need to eat so THANK GOD a good friend showed me to this site!! I have many questions but my main one is how often should they eat purred/solid foods along with their formula?(I was only able to breast feed 1 month, unfortunately because I got very sick)

  10. With my first child, we fed him just what the doctor ordered (tons of rice cereal, store-bought baby food).  He turned out to be rediculously picky and has amazing texture issues.  We’re working on it 😉

    With the next two I nodded politely at the doc, and then went home and made my own baby food. Soon as they were big enough, we gave them finger food (baby sized) of the same veggies/fruits/meats they had been eating (gasp!  we even used herbs and spices).  Both of these kids are great eaters.

  11. We skipped cereals and started with avocado at 6 months.  Around 7 months, my son no longer wanted to be fed, so we just cooked everything and cut it up small for him.  Now that we’re going grain-free, I’d like for him to be grain free as well.  The only time I’m having trouble, is breakfast.  He (14 months now) usually has a banana, kiwi, or apple and a piece of toast with almond butter or an egg free waffle.  He’s allergic to eggs, so I’m having a hard time thinking of an alternative for his breakfast.  It seems like he would need something in addition to fruit, but maybe I’m wrong.  Any advice would be greatly appreciated!

    • Could you cook extra of whatever meat or protein you have for dinner, and then cut it up to serve with breakfast? Mine love leftover chicken or meat dipped in guacamole or even just plain. It is tough with an egg allergy… but it sounds like he is a good eater.

      • I didn’t think about avocado for breakfast, but I could give him that with his fruit.  I’ll also try the meat.  Thanks!

        • I know I’m a bit late on this, but what about sausage? If you can’t find what you want or want higher quality than anything you can find in your area, it’s not that hard to make your own, and there are tons of recipes online (though sometimes they can be difficult to find). Yes, it does take some time, and a little dedication, but you can control the quality, ingredients & spice levels. And there are probably 200 sausage varieties (some 1400 recipes I’m guessing) that can be made at home, without casings or special equipment. It’s a good venue for introducing game, exotic and/or organ meat(s).

      • What types of meat to feed? I’m concerned about all the “junk” that’s added to meat you buy in the store. I’m also not wanting to give her meat in a jar (baby food). Help!

        • Organic, pasture-raised, grass-fed beef is a good source and so are organic, pasture-raised chickens. Two resources you can check out to find sources in your area by zip code are:
          localharvest.org and eatwild.com. (I’m not associated with either but found that info online:)

  12. My doctor sent the baby cereal to put in his formula because he was spitting up too much. What is another alternative for cereal in his milk so he can hold it down?

    • I would be concerned with a different issues as to why he’s not holding it down. I was shocked by your comment because I’ve always been told to NEVER put cereal in a bottle because it can cause them to choke. My daughter vomited regularly on formula she just had a sensitive stomach and got better when we went to real milk. How old is your boy?

  13. My dr. is recommending the baby cereal for the iron content and he wants her to take a vitamin D supplement.  She is 9 months old and we have only given her veggies, fruits, and meats.  Do you give your babies any kind of supplements?  We are going grain free Feb. 1st although baby has been grain free so far.  Any help would be greatly appreciated.  Thanks!!

  14. I have a question similar to the one from Karen below…
    My baby (9.5 months now) has a dairy allergy. I have cut all dairy out of my diet as he is breastfed and it has made a big difference for both of us.
    I too have a background and extensive knowledge in health and nutrition, but I am finding some challenges going forward with my baby when he starts drinking something other than breast milk and water. I have been unable to find good information about what combination and amounts of liquids to mix (and any other healthy additions) to provide him with the nutrients, fat and calories that are best for his health. I am a big fan of coconut products (milk, oil and water), but want to ensure the drink I prepare meets all the nutritional needs of a baby to toddler.
    As far as coconut milk, if looking at canned, there is only one brand I have found so far that does not have BPA in the cans, but I’d probably just make the coconut milk myself anyhow.
    Suggestions would be appreciated!

    • Coconut milk can also be bought in paper cartons. There is an organic brand I bought once to try out, as I have been trying to cut out dairy as much as possible since I BF my son & he has a s light intolerance to dairy, it seems. I typically use almond milk, but wanted to try something different, so I tried the organic coconut milk (I found it in the milk section next to the lactose free milk). Personally, I thought it was gross! However, I only used in a bowl of cereal. I’m guessing if it was mixed with fruit, avocados, etc. it wouldn’t have been as bad. I just went back to almond milk, which I love, but I do love coconut products (oil, water, even coconut milk from the can). I would definitely try the organic kind that comes in the paper carton. I think if you are mixing it with other things it would taste just fine. =) Wish I could remember the brand I bought, but just check your milk section of the grocery store & you should be able to find it. I got mine from safeway… not sure what stores you have where you live, but you can probably find it @ most grocery stores. Good luck!

  15. I did the same thing with my second and third babies, and wish I’d known about it for my first! I can testify (since they were so close in age and I didn’t forget anything!) that my first had all sorts of digestive issues people said were normal, but the others had none. It has to be the rice cereal! He ate tons and tons. My daughters absolutely loved avocado as babies, even though my pediatrician and his nurse laughed and said that sounded crazy but harmless. They loved it!

  16. we are so excited to be starting our baby out paleo.  she is baby #4 of 4 and 7 1/2 months old now.  we have been talking to more and more people about our food choices and some have been wanting to change their families over to eat more like us but are coming up against a wall with their kids.  we haven’t had that problem since our diet has been pretty diverse even before we went paleo/primal.  i remember you had an article up that you wrote with advice along these lines but i can’t find it now… has it been removed?

  17. “Real Food For Mother And Baby”, by Nina Planck.  Excellent resource for pre-pregnancy/fertility diet, pregnancy diet, breastfeeding diet, and babt’s first foods.  Every mom-to-be should have this book- I’ve given it as a gift at every baby shower I’ve been to since discovering it.  Absolutely indespensable!

  18. My little guy started on egg yolks at 6 months.  Then we added veggies and meats and finally fruit.  He does occasionally have grains, especially since we eat some at our house (my husband used to live in the Phillipines and craves rice).  But he is an amazing eater.  When eating purees he would eat about 2 1/2 cups at a time at 12 months.  His only sugar intake has been when other people have given him food without me knowing.
    People are always stopping me to tell me how healthy and happy he looks.  He has the most beautiful skin of any kid his age around.  He is so healthy that a runny nose or a couple of tiny red bumps on his skin surprise me.
    He’s been taking fish oil supplements and now thinks of them as a special treat.  If I need him to cooperate I can just offer a vitamin and he is eager to do what I ask.
    Real food rocks!

  19. This was so refreshing to hear! When my son was 4 mos we offered rice cereal as doc recommended. Then stopped bc he just wasn’t interested. A month later I began my journey of learning to make healthy choices in (and out of) the kitchen. So when I got sick and my milk supply lessened, I started him on avocado.
    At 10 mos he has had avocado, an array of fresh steamed veggies and coconut cream. Nothing processed, no grains, no sugar! And people think I’m weird. (oh, he has had tastes of banana and blueberries, but not a meals worth). As he gets older I’ve wondered about proteins.
    Thank you!!

  20. It makes me so happy when people feed their babies real food (and that includes the best of all, breast milk; the original baby food!) My baby didn’t start any solids until about 10 months and even now at 12 months, she likes a taste here and there. It’s been good for us, because if I won’t let her eat it, I have to really question if I should be eating it too! Another ‘food’ she’s been getting a lot of is dirt! She’s got the immune system of an ox and has never been sick. I only wish I had been raised this way as well…

  21. Ahhh…my son is 7 1/2 months old and I’ve already started oatmeal.  I try to follow wholesomebabyfood.com for advice and such.  I make his food, but I use a lot of frozen veggies to puree.  Is that bad?  Also, I’ve tried avocado many times and he does not like it.  I’ve tried different thicknesses of puree, but no luck.  He literally squints and spits it out.  Should I just keep trying?  It was the first food I gave him and he’s been like that from the start.  Also, should I just stop giving oatmeal alltogether?  Thank you for your help…I’m definitely following your blog.

  22. We’ve never done oatmeal with our last two kids and just started them on the avocado, veggies and meats at 6-8 months. If you’re going to try to be grain free I’d remove the oatmeal now as it will be a lot easier. That’s great that you make his food, though to make it easy, you wouldn’t even necessarily have to puree, just cook really soft and cut into tiny pieces for him to pick up himself. He will be able to feed himself soon and it’s good for dexterity…

  23. I plan on starting my baby with avocado next month for his first food. Such a great idea! What is a typical serving size for a 5 to 6 month old? Also when is it appropriate to start adding new vegetables or maybe mixing in some banana?

  24. Wow!! So nice to have someone share the same opinion about grains and babies. My family and friends have been horrified that we don’t feed our little girl cereals. She eats so many avocados that we call them “Ava-cados” in our house. She’s 11 months old now and is beautiful and healthy and eats a diet of organic veggies, fruits, and healthy proteins (including egg yolks that nearly send her dr. over the edge). Thank you for your website and for sharing the “Wellness Lifestyle.”

  25. I remember friends telling me to start putting cereal in the breast milk in the evening when my son was 5 months old. I tried rice cereal but it upset his stomach really bad and that night he threw up and didn’t sleep at all. I should’ve known that he was too young for solids and had to wait another month. Anyway at 6 months I gave him steamed carrots. I cut them in chunks, steamed them and just put them in front of him. That’s what I did with all other veggies and fruits. The only times when I had to spoon feed was avocado or soups. By the time he was 15 months old he mastered the fork. Now at 19 months he is doing really well with the spoon and I don’t have to feed him. Hi gets occasionally grains , mostly gluten free since I can’t eat gluten. He especially likes my quinoa pudding which I prepare with water and quinoa flower and use organic apple sauce as sweetener. I also add some berries. Actually the whole family loves it. I think starting our son on veggies and not spoon feeding him helped a lot for his development and also learning to eat real food.
    Thanks for this blog there are awesome information and recipes which I’ll use here soon.

    • fennugreek, Mothers milk tea, and lots of pumping and feeding from the breast as often as you can. Three days of this and your supply should go up!

  26. My 8 month old eats masses of avo, it’s one of his favourites! Kumera – sweet potato – pumpkin and broccoli also feature highly on his list. I tend to give him unsalted, baby friendly versions of what we are eating, as otherwise he looks so indignant. Solids are going well for us, and he’s still getting a lot of breastmilk 🙂 My only concern is that he’s got constipated in the last 3 weeks… I don’t feed him a lot of bread, but he does have the odd bit, as I do… something tells me you might think the constipation and the wheat are connected!

  27. I just read that the FDA has now approved canola oil as an ingredient in baby formula. If they start putting that poison in our infants’ food, what are we to do? Especially with that being the only food they eat. I am ex pecting my second child and would like tp nurse, but I don’t know if I will be able to since I wasn’t able to nurse my daughter because I produced very little breastmilk.

  28. My only comment, and i otherwise LOVE this post: vegetables have protein. And great proteins at that! We use protein from food (amino acids) to rebuild our own proteins – and we process plant-based protein much slower than animal proteins – BUT studies show that it is just as effective. I know i know, im opening a can of worms here. No need to start a big debate, just want everyone to know that their baby IS getting protein via plant-based foods (vegetables) – especially the dark green leafy kinds!

    🙂 That’s all.

  29. I was wondering what your opinion on food containers are for real food eating on the go or preparing food ahead of time to freeze. Do you ever use the BPA free small portioning containers or do you stick to the wide mouth glass containers for freezing? The BPA free portioned containers seem convenient for food variety and keeping the food fresh through the week in the freezer but I’m wary of the BPA plastics and nylons as I believe they can contain other substitute chemicals that are equally disruptive. Your thoughts would be appreciated! Thank you!

  30. I know these comments and post are older but I had a question concerning protein. My 11 month old is ebf with veggies, fruit, egg yolk, coconut oil and raw butter making up her solids. I have no intention on introducing grains. But one holistic Dr. wanted me to wait to introduce proteins until 1 year. I really feel like she is ready for meat and I know you mention here 8 months. If we are using your plans is she old enough to eat to meals I’m cooking (ie: meatballs in the crockpot?) Thank you so much!

  31. I say skip the purees! Baby led weaning is healthiest! And, my daughter has a spinach allergy among many others. It’s high in nitrites. She didn’t eat Anything before 8 months and spinach was one of the first things she had, but broke out in hives!

  32. Do you have any food / supplement recommendations for our 8 month old? He is currently on a soy formula because the dairy one was making him sick. We know that formula is awful, but we do not have primary custody of him and his mother stopped breastfeeding. He is constantly ill with runny nose or congestion, but we only have him on the weekends right now. We are sort of at a loss as to how to try to help nutritionally. When he’s here we give him organic egg yolks, avocados, other pureed veggies and a probiotic supplement. Is there anything you’d recommend adding? Is he too young for coconut milk/cream?

  33. No, there are no resources on this, at least not in english. I was soooo dissapointed when I came to N.America. Where I come from (Europe), veggies are the first thing you give to baby (or were 10 years ago). then fruits. then meat, eggs, and then somewhere at the end grains.

    As for the purred veggies in the jar from the stores, have you ever tasted it? it really tastes horrible. When I ask other mums, they do not like it either, but think their little one is just “fine” with it. If you make your own veggies, they taste delicious, provided you buy good quality.

  34. I have sensitivities (not allergies..but more of an auto-immune response) to asparagus, egg yolks, broccoli, etc. Wondering if I should be hesitant to introduce these foods to my baby? Im still only breastfeeding, but will be introducing solids shortly.

  35. Have you ever heard of a baby having a bad reaction to egg yolk? I gave it to my 7 month old and we ended up in the ER. He would not stop puking and we were scared and afraid of dehydration.

  36. Weston A Price recommends egg yolks as first food at 6 mo. What are your reasons for waiting till 7-8m??

  37. What are your opinions on raising a child vegetarian? How would I make sure they get enough iron if not feeding them cereal?

  38. I do not understand this hatred towards grains. We’ve been eating grains for eons. I understand that you don’t want to give it to very small babies. But, they can’t be bad for you. In India and all other asian countries the kids eat double boiled rice as their first food and once they are around 8-9 months they are fed boiled pulses with rice and ghee, kids have far less allergies in those countries compared to the states. I’ve never even heard of peanut allergy till I came here couple of years ago.
    I am a vegetarian and I grew up eating grains 3 times a day and I am as healthy as any 34 year old could be. Many cultures don’t even prepare separate food for the babies, they eat what parents eat and those kids are healthy too.
    Everyone should do what is good for their babies and what works for them, there is no need to feel terrible because you are not feeding what the experts say. As long as you are not feeding them junk your kids will be alright.

    • I appreciate your comment, because all this information is so overwhelming and it does often make me feel terrible to think I’m doing it all wrong! I’m glad you’re healthy! I like your advice!

  39. Hi Katie,
    I’ve just started giving my 4 month old veggies (all homemade) a week ago. She’s had carrots, sweet potatoes and peas. Our pediatrician suggested/told me that I should add Raps Oil to the homemade baby food. What is the benefit of this? We are living in Austria and so it’s quite different raising an infant over here. Thanks!

  40. Thank you for the information! I’m starting to research starting “real food” as my son is 4 1/2 months old now. People ask if I’m feeding him rice cereal yet and always act surprised when I say we’re skipping the rice cereal!

  41. I am getting addicted to your blog. I am reading it all the time. I am planning to make the homemade diaper rash cream, baby body lotion, baby soothing powder and baby body oil based on your recipes. I have placed order for all the ingredients.

  42. at my son’s recent 4m dr apt, his dr recommended starting with fortified rice cereal at 5m since its a safe inb/w (between 4-6m). Other than reading a lot of blogs (which aren’t necessarily credible) I don’t have any proof or good argument for my dr on why I want to start with avocado and avoid rice cereal altogether. I politely tried asking him about it, and he said rice cereal was better because it’s fortified. I’m wondering if you have any good resources to prove otherwise. I think I’m going to just ignore his kind advice and do what I feel is best, but I feel so scared and guilty doing that. I want what is best for my child and the dr. did go through medical school which I did not. Any advice is appreciated!

  43. I am always trying to learn more about what food is best for my baby!! I naturally opted out of feeding him rice and grains. Unfortunately it seems like doctors tell u to avoid “gassy” foods like cauliflower, beans, and eggs!! I am shocked because I think those are healthy. I luckily have been feeding him many things u suggested….. But this article gave me so many ideas! Thank you, you are an inspiration to me!

  44. My son likes avocado but sometimes I mix it with banana just to add more flavor:) that might help your baby!

  45. I have always made my own baby foods to give to my daughter. She did start with brown rice cereal and cheerios but only for a very short time because I found your site.We have since gone paleo. She loves everything abd eats mostly what we eat cut up into small pieces. I am still nursing her 4 times per day and she eats 3 solid meals with snacks. She is going to be 12 months in September and I need to start supplementing with something. I work 48 hour shifts and I’m not pumping as much as she’s eating and have run out of freezer stash. I don’t want to do formula and was thinking goats milk but am unsure how to. Do you have any suggestions?

  46. I am breastfeeding for 6 months or at least as long as I can before introducing solids. My son has shown some interest but want to wait a little longer as I have read that it is best. I would like to start with avacado or some veggies…was wondering if I waited until 6 months if he could just eat it mashed or cut into tiny pieces. And as for all the other veggies could they all just be cut small or do they need to be pureed? Also what about snacks when you go out. Do you all just take your little tiny pieces of avacado cut up in a baggy and feed that as snack? That in place of the grain type snacks that you see all kids have. And are there any sites for making meals or books for making meals for the little one? I wanna make stuff and know they dont need a lot but would like to make then freeze and want it to be seasoned but dont know what is ok and whats not and what could be harmful. Any help would be great!

  47. our 3rd baby is 7 mo, BF, and eating foods like a champ. do you have any comments regarding random *hives*?

    He seems to develop hives for no reason (just a few here and there, that come and go within an hour. they don’t show up at any routine times…not immediately after eating…just at RANDOM TIMES….and not following the intro of any new foods).

    we had a bigger hive episode when i prepared a pastured egg yolk for him at 6.5 months….he developed hives all over his trunk and lips within a half hr after eating part of the egg. i am wondering if some of the egg white got mixed in by accident.

    our 2nd son has a dairy allergy which manifests as lung inflammation/windpipe inflammation, but we’ve never dealt with hives. it’s so bizarre

    • My daughter also had random hives … we finally figured out that she was reacting to some plastics touching her skin! She is also sensitive to eggs (both yolk and white), dairy, corn, and cashews. Sometimes she reacts when people holding her have used fabric softener on their clothes. Hope this helps!

  48. How often do you introduce a new food? I have a 10 month old that is just starting solids. She doesn’t eat that much right now. She seems to like avocado a lot. When I introduce a new food, can I continue to give her what she’s already tried, or should I stick with one food at a time? Also, is butternut squash okay? I know you’re busy, so thank you for your time!

    • I space new foods out every few days to a week. Once given and there is no adverse reaction, you can continue to feed her that food on a regular basis.

  49. Hi wellness Mama, I’m a first time Mum and I adore your website. my question is about textures. My breast fed baby is 7 1/2 months old, we started him on solids at 5 1/2 months (as he was desperately hungry and more than twice his birth weight) and I make all his food. We are now giving him lots of fruit, veggies, meat, fish and some dairy. He is having 3 meals a day plus 4 breast feeds. I’m having difficulty getting him to eat anything which isn’t puréed really smooth as he retches badly and will bring up what he’s eaten if it’s too thick or lumpy. I’d love to stop pureeing everything, any suggestions? He’s also waking for 2 additional breast feeds at night which is so frustrating as he used to sleep through the night from when he was 7 weeks old to when he was 5 months old. I’m trying to fill him up as much as possible during the day and trying to settle him without feeding overnight but it’s not working. Any suggestions would be most welcome.

  50. I’m interested in starting my 6 month-old on egg yolks (cooked soft boiled as Sally Fallon suggests). But I’m concerned about the risk of Salmonella in under-cooked eggs. Any thoughts?

  51. My son is 14 months old and for the past few months he has been getting blisters in his diaper area. I know it’s a food allergy, either egg, or dairy… Or both, but it seems to be taking forever for them to clear up! They are gone one day and show up the next. If it is an allergy, as I am pretty certain, are there any suggestions as far as diet to speed up the process of ‘cleansing’ his system? The Pediatrician and the urologist are stumped… So I’m doing my best to learn as much as I can to help him at home! I do still nurse, and have cut dairy out of my diet with the exception of butter. I do still eat eggs on occasion, too, as breakfast is tough without grains!

  52. Hi! I’m a little late to the game. I adore your writing, a friend just emailed me a link to your site today. I have a 4.5 mo old boy & was wondering what you feel is ok to feed him now? I give earths best formula because my milk dried up at 3mo. Everybody tells me different things and all I really want to do is set him up for a lifetime of healthy eating habits. Thank you so much.

  53. I have a 4 month old breastfed baby and want to learn how to introduce real food to him and am glad I found this post. I have read some articles from the Weston A. Price foundation about introducing meats first since the percentage of fats and protein is similar to the fat and protein found in breastmilk. Is this a healthy option? Also what resources do you recommend related to baby feeding? This website has been a great resource. Thanks for doing what you do.

  54. What do you recommend giving babies when breastfeeding is no longer an option? My 4 and Half month old has been breastfed from birth but am no longer producing enough milk and he is stay in lactogen 1 milk

    Best regards
    Sudha

  55. Hi There,

    I have been making all my own baby food and shunned the cereals to start with as I have a sweet tooth myself and really wanted to get my baby into veggies and meat as a base. I have however been feeding homemade oatmeal and I have just cooked up a big batch of lentils…What do you think about lentils? Generally my baby (7 months) will have fruits and veggies and meat but i do feed oatmeal with fruit puree. She has eaten everything I have given her so far 🙂

  56. Hi Wellness Mama,
    I love your site. Lots of great tips and comments coming in from moms everywhere. I especially want to try feeding my 7 month old baby coconut milk soon so that she will learn to take liquids in a bottle/cup. Currently, the only liquid she is willing to drink is breastmilk straight from the breast. Any advice on how to teach my baby to drink coconut milk or other liquids from bottle/cup? Thanks in advance!

  57. Have a question? I read, I think on weston website that we can give raw liver to baby because ir has more vitamins. I want to feed my baby good nutricional food, but i am not sure about the raw liver. What do you think Katy?

    • Ok Katie, I’d love to hear your response on this. Spirulina or Chorella? Also, just the thought of liver makes me gag. I’m not sure I could even bring myself to buy liver and prepare it for my baby to eat, even if I’m not eating it. Maybe if my mom had introduced it to me at a young tender age… Is egg yolk good enough?

  58. I have a meeting with our Pediatrician coming up in a few days about the first foods for my baby. He is a good docator and can be ver reasonable, but he does not understand why I am against giving grains to my baby and is concearned about her getting enough iron without using enriched whole oats as a first food. He is at least toatlly against rice cereal. Do you have any information that I can use to support this lifestyle and to replace the iron content of outs? This is mainly to set my wifes mind at ease.

      • My concern is iron for the baby. I’m hesitant to give her too much meat because it’s acidic for the body. She has ground turkey thigh and chicken thigh. I know she needs 11mg of iron a day. I haven’t given her grains but I give her beans and lentils to up her iron. Her hemoglobin has gone from an 11.8 at 8 1/2 months to 11.4 at 11 months. Im nervous because it keeps going down. I don’t want her to become anemic and have to take supplements. She’s pretty much paleo other than the beans. The pediatrician told me I need to give her grains for carbs and iron but I don’t want to because I have hashimotos and am gluten free myself. If I don’t introduce grains and dairy within the first year, am I setting her up to be intolerant to those later in life? Is it better to introduce them while I’m still breastfeeding now? Also, the coconut milk you use, is it canned or in a carton? Which brand, and is there bpa etc in most canned coconut milk? Ok the thought of liver makes me gag- any alternatives to liver?

  59. Hi Katie,
    Thanks for a great article. I am just getting ready to start solids with my son and am wondering if raw gf butter should be introduced at 8-9 months? Same as coconut oil?

    Thanks!
    Katina

  60. Hello! I am just starting to introduce food to my daughter! I did however start with oatmeal already for one week, based on my doctors recommendations, but would like to start with veggies and fruits and try to eliminate grains. She’s a BIG girl and likes to eat! My question is, what is a typical feeding schedule like? i.e. avocado and banana for breakfast, butternut squash and apple for lunch, peas and peaches for dinner????? Could you provide some example daily meals? and approximately how much of each? (I know every baby is different, but just approx). I’m sooooo confused!!!!

  61. Hi! Thanks for all your information! My third child is six months old and I’m thinking about starting solids but have been reading about baby led weaning. What is your opinion on delaying the start of solid food past 6 months of age? I’ve read that some moms wait well past a year to introduce solids. Did you delay with any of your babies?
    Thanks!

  62. This is a great article, I just posted it onto my Mothers group wall, where a lot of mums go on the docs advice of rice cereal etc…
    Please can you advise on what to start feeding my 5 month old who has started to refuse the breast, I’ve been trying to continue for over month but now I express and bottlefeed, I think she is ready for solids but I don’t want to load her digestive system with too much, would you be able to suggest a few things to start with, such as avo and sweet potato? Also what is your view on bone broth, I was thinking about spoon feeding her that to aid her digestive system if she’ll take it.

  63. Hello Katie.
    My son is almost 13 months. He is very constipated I do not know what to do, sometimes take him 4 to 5 days to have BM and they are huge and very hard he bleed a little bit sometimes. I breastfed him ,when he was 8 months old we fed him avocados , I think he had BM everyday, later we add homemade coconut cream , banana , bone broth, squash, egg yolk, little meat sometimes , for the last three months he has big problem withBM. My husband has a lot of food allergy so I really watch out my diet. I take Mercola whole food vitamins, astaxinthan, vitamins C, everyday white rice, grassfed meat, organic vegetable, chia seed, 5 quart of water, banana, berry , a lot of bone broth. When he was ten months I ate egg yolk and home made yogurt and he was constipated so I cut. Egg and yogurt and he was ok for a week and after that he had the same problem. More than two weeks now we just feed him breast milk and home made pear sauce, avocado, we boil vegetable and use liquid to feed him , he doesn’t want to drink water much so we add a lot of water in his food and he love it. We try epson salt bath , magnesium, feed him coconut oil . I don’t know what we do wrong, I add fennel , cinnamon, ginger, turmeric , black pepper, pink salt in meat make everything taste so good , I don’t know if it affect baby. I work 6 days a week more than ten hour a day and pumping milk , mu husband stay at home take care our children , I know he wouldn’t feed something bad to the baby. We are struggling now I can’t think maybe because I work too much, so I need your help and the baby never have vaccine or antibiotic. I am looking forward to hear from you . Thank you

  64. Katie,

    Firstly, I love your website. As a new mother of a 18 week old, I am so happy my sister told me about your site. I use sole, drink Komboocha, kefir water, milk kefir and am about to start making bug off bars, sun screen bars, and homemade fruit snacks. Very excited to get started on all these projects – finally have all the ingredients! But the point of my comment, I was wondering if you have a baby food meal plan starting at 6 months? If not where can I find something like that, that deals with first foods other than grains? I am going to start with avocado, your article makes complete sense! Why start our babies off on garbage and sweet foods instead of wholesome veggies that are full of iron and other nutrients. Anyway, any advice would be greatly appreciated. Thank you in advance Katie – YOU ROCK! 🙂

  65. Spinach is a great first food! according to the whole foods online site they state…”One new category of health-supportive nutrients found in spinach is called “glycoglycerolipids.” Glycoclycerolipids are the main fat-related molecules in the membranes of light-sensitive organs in most plants. They’re indispensable for the process of photosynthesis carried out by plants. However, recent lab research in laboratory animals has shown that glycoglycerolipids from spinach can help protect the lining of the digestive tract from damage — especially damage related to unwanted inflammation. You can expect to see more studies about this exciting new category of molecules in spinach and its potential health benefits.
    In a recent study on the relationship between risk of prostate cancer and vegetable intake — including the vegetables spinach, broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, Brussels sprouts, mustard greens, turnip greens, collards, and kale — only spinach showed evidence of significant protection against the occurrence of aggressive prostate cancer. (“Aggressive prostate cancer” was defined as stage III or IV prostate cancer with a Gleason score of at least 7. Gleason scores are based on lab studies of prostate tissue and common tumor-related patterns.) The study authors did not speculate about specific substances in spinach that may have been involved in decreased prostate cancer risk. However, we know that certain unique anti-cancer carotenoids—called epoxyxanthophylls — are plentiful in spinach, even though they may not be as effectively absorbed as other carotenoids like beta-carotene and lutein. You can count on seeing future research on neoxanthin and violaxanthin — two anti-cancer epoxyxanthophylls that are found in plentiful amounts in the leaves of spinach.

  66. My little one just turned 6 months and for the last month I have been offering her rice cereal off and on, per doctors orders, because her weight has been slow. (I belive she could have a lip-tie but my concerns were disregarded.) I breastfeed 6-7 times a day and she seems interested in food but I cannot give her any more cereal for it created such constipation and gas for an entire day when she usually has 2-4 dirty diapers/day. I am told by the dr that is normal for babies to go up to a week without going! I know this information is just wrong and dont know why I even started rice cereal, being that I eat paleo, and try to avoid grains myself. So I would like to start her on avocado since I already have some available and then make her some bone broth for the next food. Did you mix avocado in with breast milk to thin it out so its not too thick? Any suggestions would be helpful as I feel totally lost not having anyone to talk who has done this. Thank you!

  67. is there a big difference still in making vs. buying food if you’re using something like Ella’s organics with absolutely no other ingredients – even water?

  68. Hello, forgive me if you have already answered this above, but my 8 month old is on purees (organic from a jar) still, but he’s extremely interested in our food when we eat in front of him and isn’t happy until we give him some. What are some finger foods that would be good for him to start feeding himself, especially snack ideas while we are out and about? I know a lot of babies get those processed puff things, we would like to stick with whole foods for him, but I am just needing some good ideas. Thanks!

  69. My baby is 4 1/2 months and has been showing all the signs of readiness for something more than breast milk. I mashed up some avocado and thinned it with some breast milk, she loved it, but is it way too early? She’s handling it fine and is back to her normal schedule again ( she was every three hours and sleep all night , then she went to every 2 hours and wake up once, but eating drastically more if that makes sense)

  70. This article is causing me anxiety lol! My son was exclusively breastfed for 6 months. Then we did baby led weaning. We always offered veggies and fruits but he would NEVER eat the veggies. (guess I should have waited on the fruit). He is now 15 months. I’ve given him avacado at least once a week for the last 10 months and he still spits it out every time. He used to eat sweet potatoes but now he refuses. The only things he will consistently eat are eggs, cereal, fruit, mac and cheese, taco meat and pizza. I would have never introduced mac and cheese or pizza if my son hadn’t been falling drastically on the growth charts since 6 months. I basically started trying to get him to eat ANYTHING. The only way I get veggies in is in his morning smoothie and hidden in other cheesey foods. My son has a dairy allergy and cannot tolerate milk or yogurt (but we can do some cheese. But from my research milk isn’t that great for your either). He was tested for Celiac but does not have it. This article makes feeding your child sound so easy. (I’m sure for some kids it is). But what do you do when your child does not eat? According to this article I should’t give him grains? What do you suggest when your child needs a drastic increase in calories (right now he consumes about 700 when he should be getting around 1200)? …I don’t think he would come close to his daily calorie need without grains…

  71. Hi ,
    I am glaf to read a post like this . I am an Indian and my baby is 11 months old. From the time of his birth till date he has not had any dairy product except my breast milk and post 9 months i started weaning therefore now he just takes night feeds and rest whole day on solids. He has never been with any whole wheat grain. He just takes fruits , smoothies mixed with water but i do give him oatmeal with raisins and rice with any lentil (we call it khichdi).i dont consume non veg. Just wanted to understand what can you advise me here pl ? Also if i am unable to feed him with coconut milk can i use normal cows milk as I dont want to give him milk as a glass full rather want to change the form of it like custard , fruit smoothie with just 20ml of cows milk ?

  72. Hi Katie! Love your blog. Truly inspiring and I read it daily. I had a question about iron rich foods. My daughter’s pedi wants me to incorporate iron rich foods such as rice cereal and oatmeal. I really don’t want to do that (avoiding grains!) and am wondering if you have some suggestions on what else I can give her? Also, do you know how much vitamin D is in Green Pastures fermented cod liver oil butter blend? I’m giving it to my daughter daily and am not supplementing vitamin D. I’m curious if you knew how much is in the suggested serving (1/2 tsp daily) in case I need to start giving her vitamin D as well. Thank you so much for your wonderful blog. Keep at it, people are listening!

    • The best iron rich food is liver (yum) so you might try making some pate for her. On the FCLO, I don’t remember off the top of my head, but it should say on the bottle? They didn’t have the blend when I ordered last, so it’s not in front of me to check.

  73. My little one is 5 months old and is exclusively breastfeed. My husband and I primarily eat a Traditional diet. Our pediatrician suggested Baby Led Weaning. I’ve been reading up on it and makes a lot of sense. Has anyone else done BLW or have any additional thoughts on it? (I skimmed through most of the posts, but didn’t see anything.) Thanks for the post!

  74. My husband and I start off most mornings with a smoothie made of blended mixed fruits: blue berries, strawberries, mango,peaches, banana, avocado, and spinach, and a little 100% juice. Just for fun we offered some to our 6 month old son. To our surprise and joy, he was able to slurp it up through a straw and after the first taste, slurped down 4 or 5 more slurps. He still eats rice cereals mixed with baby jar food, but it’s obvious to us he prefers the smoothies. No allergic reaction to them and he now enjoys daily smoothies as much as we do!

  75. Hi Katie, your blog is awesome!
    I have a question about my niece for you.
    She nursed up until 6 months. Then my sister gave her oat cereal for 2 days. Then, her and i talked about starting with avocado, instead. So, she stopped the oats and started to give her avocado 1x/day for 10 days. My niece broke out in a rash that was mostly on her torso, head, neck, etc. It was really itchy then became dry, like sand paper. Her bowels were sluggish before starting solids and became even worse. She still has the rash months later. So, they backed off much of any food and just gave her breast milk.
    My question is, do you think the oats caused this? If so, what should my sister do? She (baby) is underweight and the docs are wanting to put her on a formula (ick).
    Can she eat coconut oil with veggies? Also, what about bone broth?
    If her gut is inflamed, what would you do?
    Thank you!

    • Well, it could be either the oats or the avocado (hate to say it). I have a friend who is severely allergic to avocado, although generally that’s a pretty uncommon allergy, as I understand it. Bone broth could help that gut, and also it might help the sluggish bowels by giving a very gentle transition from breastmilk to more complex foods without the added complication of solid food causing blockage. With a little one like that sometimes there will be a little experimentation to see what will work, poor dear.

  76. Having to supplement breastfeedings with formula 1 1/2 months old only to have little one break out with severe eczema, fussiness, vomiting and diarrhea. We are now on our 4th formula, Elecare. Finally at 5 1/2 months the eczema has cleared, no more vomiting and diarrhea….that is except when we introduced rice cereal at 4 1/2 months. Dr stated our LO was at failure to thrive due to lack of weight gain and weight loss. Dr recommended starting cereal to increase weight. Rice cereal given on a Monday night, followed by projectile vomiting and diarrhea which continued for days landing us in the hospital overnight on Friday. This after just one small serving. Dr said no more rice, try oatmeal….vomiting and diarrhea gain but not as bad this time. Due to milk protein allergy and the issues with rice and oatmeal, I am highly concerned about his potential food allergies. This is our 5th child and the only one with allergies like this. We’ve seen a specialist who said absolutely no dairy until at least one year of age. He’s hopeful that he may outgrow it but said we should be prepared for a lifestyle change. Good news is we have gained weight and have reached the 40th percentile, although still under the doctors target weight. Any recommendations on what to start next?

    • Have you tried making your own formula using powdered goat milk? It’s much less allergenic than cow milk. We make a formula to supplement breast milk using (for 8 oz of formula): 1 rounded TBS goat milk powder (we use Mt. Capra), 1 TBS liquid coconut oil (Nature’s Way makes this), 1 TBS olive oil, 1/8 tsp unsulphured molasses, 2 tsp coconut sugar, 1/8 tsp infant probiotics and 1/4 tsp infant vitamins, plus water. Baby loves it, and is climbing the charts as a result.

  77. hi Katie,i live in Africa and my daughter turns 5 months in the next couple of days. She was nursing well until she turned 4 months and since then hasnt been nursing well so i decided to see her ped. She advised to introduce her to rice cereal and i actually did but reading your advice on introducing babys first foods..im confused.please advice.what should i give her instead of d rice cereal because i want my baby to be as healthy as ever.P.S she is my first child

  78. My 4 year grandson eats very little. Just can’t get him to eat. Drinks carnation instant breakfast, some banana, apple, MN acs and cheese, chicken nuggets. Any advice appreciated.

  79. Wow Katie! Looks like you need to write a book on the subject. So much feedback on one post. A great topic. I have a 5 month old and I’m trying to decide what her first foods will be. A friend of mine who is a dietician agrees with you when you said you personally would not raise a child vegetarian. I haven’t prepared meat for years but willing to do so for my partner and my babe after reading this post, and after talking with my friend. Thanks so much. Going to pick up some liver and eggs. 🙂

  80. Hi Everyone, I have a different problem, my 4 month old has cystic fibrosis and must have enzymes before every single sip of breast milk…Yikes.. The CF professionals believe processed food is great as well as anything that is high calorie since CF ers have a hard time gaining weight. They insist baby needs iron enriched rice cereal because he needs extra iron. I will be starting him on avocado first but what should i give him to make sure he gets enough iron? Thanks

  81. Hello! Love your post on baby food! I’m a new mom of twin boys and I’ll be honest I’m definitely clueless when it comes to anything baby. I was wondering if you gave your babies a liquid multi-vitamin? My doctor insists it’s great but I just picked up the perscription he ordered and it has fluoride in it which I thought was pretty crazy!
    also do you have any tips on freezing your baby food? what trays did you use? thanks so much for all the work you do!

    Aloha from Hawaii,
    Leah

  82. I have read tbat solids need to be pureed until 2 years old because if they dont have teeth to properly chew and digest it then it just stays the same as it goes in, whole??? Also what would be another substitue for oat cereal as I use it to thicken my “mush” i mix everytjing together, protein, fruits, veggies etc. ?

  83. Hello Wellness Mama,

    Thanks for a great post!

    I have an issue re puree foods. My twin girls love solids and at 6 months we are doing really well! However one of my girls seem to prefer bland foods (I tried Holle baby food in jars). When I prepare homemade puree which I believe tastes much more superior and rich in nutrients than Jar food – my baby girl seems to dislike it but once I open a jar which pretty much the same ingredients but bland tasting she licks it up

    Any tips as to why this is the case -what can I do to my homemade puree to give a much milder taste

    Thanks in advance

    Lavergne x

  84. Thank you for the info! I am a first time mama to a 5 month old baby and I am trying to prepare for when we introduce solids. According to the doctor, at this point they are concerned about the baby getting enough iron, and that is why they recommend fortified cereals. What first foods can I give him that will address this? Thank you!

    • Liver is great! Babies seem to really like pate (it’s a fun texture for them) and my friend’s baby loves fried liver of all things! Spinach is good too, as is avocado.

  85. I am trying to find out if my 8 month old, who is exclusively breast fed, is safe to drink oat milk not as a supplement but for if she is wanting my milk after just emptying both breasts.. She loves water but sometimes cries for my milk only and hour after drinking it are maybe you have some other suggestion

  86. Hi Katie!
    Love your site and posts. My second child will be 6 months next month and just trying to be more prepared than i was for my first. Have you come across any other baby food sites since this post?

    Thanks!!!!

  87. Hi Katie! I look at your site everyday and always find wonderful and new information each day. I am currently breastfeeding my 8 month old baby girl and she is eating SOME puréed, organic foods. What can I give her to drink at this point? Thanks in advance.

  88. What would one suggest for finger foods that can be sent to daycare? They are going to start asking soon what he gets to eat and they feed those poor kiddos worthless puffs and cereal which I do not want. Any ideas? Thanks!

  89. I love all this ‘paleo’ stuff..And feed myself and my family largely ‘paleo’ style.BUT in my personal opinion human population only boosted when people started farming and eating grains aswell.Coming from an Eastern European background, bread is sacred to me.It is seen as a nutritious food because the traditional way of preparing it makes the good outweigh the bad in it.Most Ukrainians that I know of have no gluten intolerance, heck noone even heard of it there when I ask hehe.People eat a lot of grains and such (wheat,spelt, kasha, oatmeal) along with meats and veggies (lots of stews!).There has been a recent Finnish study where the results showed that delaying certain foods like oatmeal is the very thing which makes the kids sensitive to it later in life. It is even linked to sensitivity to inhalant allergens. And I can promise you, no matter what you do your child will surely have a taste of grains in the future..they may even want to eat it all the time as soon as they’re out of the house..Hm..so the benefits of these foods that ‘paleo diet people’ completely banish are perhaps far greater then the toxins that come along with them.Buckwheat and oatmeal ARE good foods to eat, but not a lot! Like fish, you eat enough and it’s good for you, you eat too much and it’s a slow poison.Also eating tooooo many eggs is not going to be good for anyone considering the saturated fats.So I love ‘paleo’ but it freaks me out a bit when people get all fanatic about anything. No disrespect, just sharing opinions. Middle way is usually a good way, especially for kids.

    • variety is the spice of life. jesus is the bread of life. and breastmilk contains amylase.

      ancient grains, soaking and fermentation, may be some of the differences between the US and the Ukraine, altho there are doubtless many others.

      difficult to overdose on satfat eating natural. and anyway the problem with this would come from consuming veg oil as well – google “Dietary fatty acid imbalances which elevate blood cholesterol are fatal only to the magnitude that omega-6exceeds omega-3 in tissue HUFA”

  90. what about the Heinz fruits and milk is it ok qthW ? just started it for over a week now and my baby has refused the breast had a lister on tongue

  91. Hello I would like a recipe for an alternate for baby formula for a 9 month old baby! He was raised in Vietnam and the american formulas make him hyper active and very aggressive! Thank you for your feedback!

  92. Hi Katie!

    My little girl is 4 months old and I’m having a hard time getting her to sleep thru the night. She gives me about five hours. (I’ll take it !)

    I have been told in numerous occasions to put rice cereal in her bottle at night with my breast milk to fill her up more. However, after reading your post (which is awesome), I don’t want to do that – any suggestions for what I can give her during her last feeding in addition to breastmilk? She takes about 5-6oz.

    • Hmmm… mine never slept through the night at that age either, but that is completely normal for 4 months. I did start them on little bits of liver and fermented cod liver oil around that age, so perhaps that might help?

    • It’s worth while checking out Barbara O’neil : naturopath/ nutritionist from misty mountain health retreat in Australia – you tube runs for about 55 minutes lecture – when should I feed my baby , what should I feed my baby. She is currently in the USA doing lectures. 4 month old baby – pretty normal for him / her to be feeding even 3 hourly at that age!

  93. I have a 6.5 mos (adjusted 4.5 mos) old foster baby and am not allowed to make my own formula or even have raw milk in my home. What could be added to the formula to make the best of this situation?

  94. My little man is almost nine months and my breastmilk has almost dried up. Of course the doctor wants me to supplement with formula, but I can not bring myself to do it! He is grain free(minus a lone Graham cracker…lol), and enjoys only grass Fed, organic meats, veggies, and fruits. Egg yolks I am going to be adding more of as well as cheeses. But I worry about him not getting all he needs and being dehydrated from lack of milk. He nurses now just three times a day, but is gaining weight, is happy, and loves his solids! Should I introduce goats milk to help? No amount of herbs or essential oils seem to be helping my supply…just not a good producer apparently!

  95. I did pretty much this with my baby. Started with zucchinis, then sweet potatoes, broccoli, and so on. Then fruit. Now at 18 months, she eats very well.
    Although in our case, I offered a bit of a very cooked egg yolk when she was 8 or 9 months old… and she had her only vomiting episode ever! It was quite scary as she threw up several times that afternoon, but was fine otherwise and got completely fine after four or five hours with lots of cuddling and nursing to prevent dehydration. After that, I pushed back every other attempt with eggs until way past her first birthday!
    What I learned (which is an old advice from my parents anyway) is offering new stuff only during the day rather than at dinner time, so you have some good hours to watch for any reactions.

  96. I was hoping you could tell me if I can give coconut flour & coconut oil to my 7.5 month old. I was going to bake him some baby lead weaning muffins but I’m not sure if those are okay to use in the recipe at his age.

  97. Hi, I’m just about to adopt a 1 yr old who has been chronically overfed hungry baby formula. cake and other fattening/sugary foods. He currently weights 14kgs and wheezes when he toddles! Can you offer me any helpful suggestions for getting his weight down and weaning him onto healthy foods as quick as possible please?

  98. Hi Katie,

    I have a 1 year old girl who is still not strong enough to walk she only holds herself up on things. She also doesn’t like to eat meat. What would you suggest for me to give her (food and supplement) in order to strengthen her and help her to be ready to walk? Also any tips on new ways to incorporate meat into her diet?

  99. What a helpful resource! I’m currently pregnant and not due ’til May, but I’m a planner – I’m thinking ahead. I’m loosely Paleo – more like Perfect Health Diet, as I eat white rice and dairy, and I hope to feed my baby the same way.

    Here’s my concern – I have serious FODMAP problems, so I’m very limited in my fruit and veggie consumption. I’ve been working with a Naturopath to be sure my nutritional state is good for pregnancy, so I know I’m doing fine, and should be in good shape for breastfeeding as well. But I worry about introducing things like avocado to my baby, because they blow me up like a blimp, and I know he’ll get much of his digestive system from me. I would appreciate any thoughts on the matter!

    Funny aside – Onions are a huge no-no for me, and I recently learned that when I was a breastfeeding baby, I used to get gas if my Mom ate onions! I guess it just never goes away!

  100. When I was taking home-ec and early childhood development in high school not so long ago 2003-2005, my teacher drilled this into us. Vegetables before fruit. Always.

    Even wait for carrots because they are so sweet.

    It makes sense. I’m surprise to hear doctors say to feed fruits first. Is this new?

  101. Thanks for this post! I have breast fed both of my children and with my first child I followed what the recommendations are for babies, followed their time table of when to introduce which foods, starting with rice cereal. She was a preemie when born and her belly took awhile to get used to solids. She was constipated a lot. She is now 7 and doing great but I wish I had known more about food then. My second child is almost one and I took a completely different approach when we began solids. I did baby led weaning with her and started with cooked, soft veggies. This was so easy and so far she hasn’t turned her nose up to any foods I’ve given her! I love the convenience of giving her what we have for dinner and letting her eat with her own hands. I would definitely recommend starting babies out on cooked veggies than rice cereal. I just started recently introducing a very small amount of grains and dairy. She eats veggies, fruits and meat currently. Thank you for all of your wonderful insight into health! You have been a wonderful resource for me and my family!

  102. I had totally planned to feed my baby this way. However I think I started too late. Now she is 14 months and she still won’t really eat any solid food (exclusively breastfed!). At this point I’m letting her try anything she reaches for just so she can get used to food… I’m afraid to ask my doctor about this… She is totally healthy but should I be concerned that she isn’t eating more solids?

  103. Our 11 month old baby (my grand baby) LOVEs my chicken (or turkey) rice soup made from my home made bone broth. It’s her favorite!!!

  104. Nice postEven if you dispute whether or not it’s harmful for babies to eat grains, it still stands that they do not have very much nutrition for growing babies with small stomach capacity. I’ve also read that vegetables are difficult to digest for babies and don’t have a lot of calories, so it’s better to start with egg yolks, well-cooked meats, especially organ meats, and some vegetables like avocado and sweet potato with plenty of healthy butter or coconut oil added. High fat yogurt and kefir is also nice. Weston A. Price (westonaprice.org) has great information on feeding babies and young children. Definitely agree on the other things though.

  105. I use/reference the book Super Nutrition for Babies: The Right Way to Feed Your Baby for Optimal Health
    Book by Katherine Erlich and Kelly Genzlinge

    It has been really helpful. I have also needed dr notes for childcare because of FDA regulations and how childcare is subsidized for food programs (aghhh) where I live. It is a pain, but well worth it. My 2.5 year old will eat almost everything that we eat and doesn’t care for things like chicken nuggets or goldfish crackers (insert happy dance here)

    Thanks for all of the sharing! Great info!!!
    Peace

  106. Thank you for the post. We’ve been giving my 7 month eggs and avocado but was wondering if it’s ok b/c I really didn’t see those as food options in the baby food isle. We do buy a lot of organic pureed baby food for convenience and I guess lack of confidence to puree the food myself. I do like what you said about steaming and giving the baby as finger food. I think he’ll love feeding himself. As a tether, we also give our baby a cinnamon stick (we supervise) but it is very think and highly unlikely he’ll bight off any chunks unless he literally chews all day b/c it’s so hard/dry…he loves it big time!

  107. Our first foods were egg yolks w a pinch of sea salt which were recommended by our pediatrician.
    Followed by sweet potatoes, winter squash and avocado. Nourishing Traditions is a great book on baby food that is highly recommended

  108. I have a quick question. My son is 6 months old and I only produce enough milk for half of his meals a day (3 out of 6 bottles). His formula is an organic formula from Germany but only provides 3.6mg of iron a day (from the 3 bottles of formula). I read that its recommended that they get 11mg. I don’t want to feed him rice cereal (even though that what the pediatrician and every one else says). So basically I am missing 7.3mg of iron a day for him. I give him some solids, but not sure I am really meeting the quota and in order for me to meet the quota, I feel like I would need to give him a lot of solids. Do you have any suggestions? I was thinking of maybe giving him some liver but I don’t want to feed that to him every day.

  109. How do you feed the bone broth to a 6 month old? Bottle, sippy cup, spoon or straw? Are there signs you look for or just start at or after 6 months? My daughter is 5.5 months and we are just switching over to the wellness diet so I am so glad to have read this before giving her anything!

  110. What age do you feel comfortable starting bone broth? I’ve heard anywhere as young as 3-4 months but also 6 months – was wondering what your thoughts were. Thanks!

    • It’s always best to check with your child’s doctor first, but I breastfeed exclusively until about 6 months, then I begin to introduce bone broth in small amounts and work our way up.

  111. Hello Katie, thank you for your article.
    What do you think of a young coconut meat as the first baby food?

  112. Hello Katie.
    I have a few questions for you. For a little background I have a 13 month baby girl who I have exclusively breastfeed. At 6 months I started to introduce puréed organic homemade foods including avacodo (being her first food), butternut squash, green beans and beets. I did not stay consistent on feeding honestly because I hadn’t even wanted to start her at that point due to all that I had read about babies leaky gut but was really being pressured by everyone (Doctor, grandparents, aunts, and especially daddy) to get her started on solid foods. So really she only ate a handful of times a month I’d say. the days she was with me I wouldn’t give her any solids unless her dad really pushed it otherwise I would just not continue with the solids. Now that she is a year I would like to start her on solids more consistently but now she is not interested in eating at all weather it be puréed foods, solid pieces of vegetables, and the only meat we have tried which is chicken. So here are my questions:
    1. I’ve now after that fact learned the many benefits of the bone broth and I’m wondering if it would still benefit to start giving her bone broth even though she has already started some of the solids.
    2. Do you have a recipe to make it?
    3. I’ve read that it is also good to have a good source of where you buy the meat/bones being used versus just buying at a store. How do you feel about that and how can I find a good source in my area cause i’d imagine a regular grocery store probably wouldn’t be the answer.
    4. What do you think could help in getting her a little more interested in eating?
    Thank you

    • She might really like bone broth at this point, since it is a liquid too and she could definitely still get the benefits. This is my recipe, and there are also companies that sell really high quality organic broth (this is my favorite). At that age, I typically let me kids start sitting in their “big chairs” (high chair) with us at meals and placing very tiny amounts of our food on the tray, along with a fork and spoon. There isn’t a need to force the eating, and mine typically get interested in eating once they have the ability to feed themselves that way… Good luck!

  113. Hey there,

    Sorry if his question was already asked and I missed it but what brand of grass fed butter do you use? Do you think whole foods might carry one?

    Thanks in advance!

  114. My daughter absolutely loves the broth! It’s been about two weeks since we started her on it. My question would be about adding liver in. I do not like the smell of cooked liver (barf), so what would be the best option on getting it in her broth finely graded? I’ve never handled it so very unsure of what to do. After I introduce that, how long after would you suggest doing the avocado & banana? She’s exclusively breastfed so I don’t really feed her too much of the broth. Thank you 🙂 (sorry if this was asked before!)

  115. First off thank you for sharing all your information it is very helpful. I have a couple questions. I would like to make my own bone broth and looked over your recipe which I will be trying but I’d like to get my chicken local rather than online via the sites you provided the only problem is I have no clue where to start. Where to buy (could I buy at whole foods?) and most importantly what to ask Or make sure of when getting the chicken to be sure it is the healthiest for my baby (are there hormones injected? Free range? organic?).
    My other question is at what point and what can be used in flavoring meats and chicken for my baby?
    I’m sorry if this has already been asked I tried to look through the comments but there are so many.

  116. Hi wellness mama! My little guy is five months old right now, so I am looking into baby food options to get ready for the six-month mark. Well as I have been doing research I noticed some people say that it’s OK to start giving some baby foods at six months but I’ve also read that it’s better to wait until a year old because their digestive system isn’t quite readyfor foods. So if starting him on broth and meats, bananas, avocados at six or seven months of age is that too early you think? Also, to go along with this questionI am hearing that a lot of people are now nursing well into their child being 2 to 3 years old. Just wondering what your thoughts on that are and how long you nursed for? Thank you for any help I always enjoy hearing your advice what you have to say!

    • We start our kids on solids when they show interest, usually when they are six or seven months. And most of my kiddos have weaned themselves around the 18-24 month mark. Hope that helps!

  117. I’ve been reading this very long and informative trail. thank you all for sharing. my doctor is insisting on starting solids at 4 months and he’s only mentioned foods high in sugar such as bananas, apples – foods that I eat sparingly b/c I’m very concerned about the amount of sugar we consume. I thought it odd that he’d suggest adding so much sugar so fast. On another note. I noticed a number of moms added egg yolk to their babies food? Is that the safe option if you don’t know if they are allergic to eggs? vs the full egg?

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