Is My Baby Ready to Transition Off Formula

The following are some of the questions asked by many parents:

When do I start giving my baby solids? How long before he/she starts eating solid foods? What kind of food should he or she eat first? Should I give him/her cow’s milk, soy milk, rice milk, almond milk or another type of formula? Will it hurt my baby if I don’t feed him/her what they like best right away? Can I wait until he/she is older to introduce solid foods? When will my baby be ready to go back to breastfeeding?

I have been reading all these questions and trying to answer them. Here are some answers:

1) You must decide when your baby is ready for solids. If you are still nursing at 6 months, then you should continue with that method till your baby turns one year old. However, if you are not able to nurse anymore, then you may want to consider going back to breastfeeding. There is no reason why your baby cannot drink cow’s milk from day

1. Cow’s milk contains all the nutrients your baby needs while being low in fat and calories.

2) Your baby can be fed any type of food whenever he/she wants.

You do not need to wait until they turn one year old. Your baby may be ready to eat solid foods anytime after 6 months.

3) If your baby shows an interest in solid food, then it is time for him/her to start eating.

Some babies show an interest in solid food anywhere from 4 months to 10 months of age.

4) You can introduce any kind of food you want.

In fact, I would recommend a highly nutritious organic baby food.

5) No, it is not necessary to wait until they are older.

6) If you are still nursing your baby, then the answer is no.

You need to continue nursing at least till your baby turns one year old.

The “Waiting Game”

One of the most common questions that parents ask when starting on the weaning process is how long in advance one should prepare for it.

The answer?

It depends. There is no set guideline, and it also varies from baby to baby. The best way to know your child is to pay attention to his or her cues.

How does he or she react to the current situation? Is the child getting restless being seated in his or her high chair? Are you able to distract him or her with another toy?

If so, then it probably isn’t time. However, if the child seems bored or is showing signs of getting hungry soon, then it might be time to eat.

As a general guideline, most parents start the process between 4 and 6 months. Many pediatricians also advise starting around 5 months, as baby will more than likely be ready at that age. There’s no need to rush however, as waiting until 7 or 8 months will not have an effect on when baby gets his first tooth, learns to crawl or walks. These developmental milestones occur at different times for each baby, and there’s nothing you can do to make them happen sooner. So don’t worry, your little one will grow and develop at their own pace.

Remember, weaning is a process. There is no set time limit for how long it will take. Some children take longer than others, while some may be quicker. It all depends on your child and how quickly they adapt to the change. Patience is important here.

Don’t rush your child, but also don’t force the issue. Baby will let you know when they are ready.


There are two popular methods for feeding your baby: hand feeding and fork feeding. The method you decide to use is up to you, but most parents prefer hand feeding over fork feeding.

Hand feeding is exactly what it sounds like. One person, most often the mother, feeds the baby pieces of food that the baby can eat on their own. Hand feeding is great for teaching a child to chew before swallowing as well as getting them use to the feel of different textures in their mouth. The only problem is it can be quite a messy affair. Many times parents will end up with mashed potatoes in their hair, carrots in their ears and food everywhere but in the baby’s mouth.

Fork feeding, on the other hand, is much more orderly. Here a fork is used to push food directly into the baby’s mouth. No mess! However many babies do not enjoy the feel of the tines of a fork in their mouth and tend to push the food right back out. This method also does not allow for the baby to get use to different textures or chewing their food.

As with everything, each method has its pros and cons. It is up to you to decide which one is best.

My Baby Isn’t Showing Much of an Interest in Eating!

Many babies start off somewhat slow when it comes to eating, and some even end up not being big eaters at all. If your child is gaining weight and has all their other vital signs, then there is no reason to be overly concerned.

However, if you feel your baby is not eating enough and is losing weight or not gaining weight as he or she should be, you should contact your pediatrician.

There are also some babies who just don’t seem all that interested in eating. They need the nutrition, but they just don’t seem to have the desire for food. You can try warming the baby’s bottle or milk a little. Some babies simply prefer their food warm. You can also try feeding him or her a little more frequently, as some babies just don’t like large stretches of time between feedings.

The important thing is that your baby is healthy and is gaining weight. After all, that’s what really matters.


Your baby’s digestive tract is now fully developed, and the pancreas and liver are functioning. Your baby is putting on weight, and his or her length is about 11.4 inches (5.2 cm) and weight around 8 ½ ozs. (240 grams).

If your baby was born now, he or she would probably survive provided there were no complications due to being born early.

Sources & references used in this article:

Thinking about the baby: Gender and transitions into parenthood by S Walzer – 2010 –

Lactoferrin in infant formulas: effect on oxidation by MT Satué-Gracia, EN Frankel… – Journal of Agricultural …, 2000 – ACS Publications

Melamine in infant formula sold in Canada: occurrence and risk assessment by R Williams – 2012 – Macmillan

Multigenerational transition in family businesses: A new explanatory model by SA Tittlemier, BPY Lau, C Menard… – Journal of agricultural …, 2009 – ACS Publications