Many new parents worry about what, when and how much to feed their baby. Most people know that breast feeding the baby is the number one best choice of food, however, there are a large number of women that choose to feed their baby with formula. Up until the age of four months, breast feeding is very important for a newborn as it will promote health and strength. The initial milk that a mother produces is called colostrum and this is full of antibodies and immunoglobulins, both of these will assist the newborn to be protected against bacteria and viruses.
Baby Feeding up to Four Months Old
As a rule, do not feed any solid food to a baby under the age of five months old. Watch your baby, if they look relaxed after feeding off the breast and they are gaining weight then this is a good sign they are getting enough of the right nourishment. As a guide only your baby should gain about five to ten ounces each week in the first month. In the second and third month they should gain five to eight ounces each week. Between the ages of three and six months old the baby should gain a further two and a half to four and a half ounces each week. Between the age of six months to a year old the baby should gain one to three ounces each week.
Baby Feeding Chart by Age – Four to Six Months
Between four and six months old a baby can hold their head up and make chewing motions. The baby can also show interest in their food and usually seem hungry after eight to ten feeds of breast milk. You can change to formula but only after consulting your doctor first and the baby may also have iron fortified rice cereal in a juice form. After they have started to have this they can then slowly move onto other grain cereals like oats and barley but also in a liquid form. After this stage the baby can have one tea spoon of dry rice cereal that is combined with four or five tea spoons of breast milk or even formula.Baby Feeding Chart by Age – Six to Eight Months
As with the younger babies the six to eight month olds can still be on breast milk or formula. They can also be fed the iron fortified cereals of rice, barley, and oat but now in a semi liquid form. At this age the baby can also have pureed and strained fruits such as banana, pears, kiwis, and mangoes as well as pureed and strained vegetables like carrots, sweet potato and spinach. The six to eight month old can have three to nine table spoons of cereal over two to three feedings.