Three important rules about your baby's first foods

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Three important rules about your baby's first foods

So I've got 3 simple rules about things to do and things not to do when you're starting solid foods for your baby. Rule #1 is let the first meal be a family meal. Share some of the same food together. And don't start that split between kids' meals and family meals. It's far better to enjoy some of the same foods. Number 2 is let the first food be a real food. I like taking an avocado or a banana or a sweet potato, mashing it up with a fork, and mixing it up with some breast milk or formula and feeding that. They get to see it, taste it, touch it, smell it, and see that food comes from food, not from a box. The third one is to start giving a lot of variety. The foods that kids get early on they form lasting preferences for. So do mixes, blends, spices, herbs. Give a wide variety of things. The 3 don'ts. Don't wait 3-5 days between new foods. You're going to hear that from a lot of people, but all that does is train picky eaters. There's no benefit in reducing allergies. Number 2, when it comes to allergies, you don't need to delay beyond 6 months any food to prevent allergies. And number 3 is don't give up. We know that if a baby gets something before they start walking 6-8 times, they're very likely to form a preference for up. Up to 15 times. But 94% of parents will give up before 6 tries. They think, oh, they don't like peas. They don't understand, they learn to like them. They're not supposed to learn to like something the first time it goes into their mouth. It's the things parents care about enough to feed multiple times they learn to like.

View Alan Greene, MD's video on Three important rules about your baby's first foods...


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Alan Greene, MD


Dr. Alan Greene founded his website,, in 1995, cited by the AMA as "the pioneer physician web site." In 2010 he founded the WhiteOut Now movement to change how babies are fed from their very first bite of solid food, and in 2012 he founded TICC TOCC – Transitioning Immediate Cord Clamping To Optimal Cord Clamping. He is an author of several books including Feeding Baby Green and appears frequently in the media including such venues as the The New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, TODAY Show, Good Morning America, the Dr. Oz Show, and is a regular columnist for Parenting magazine. He is a practicing pediatrician and the father of four.

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