Self-weaning: what it is and how to put it into practice

Self-weaning, have you ever heard of it?.In self-weaning from the 6 months of the baby’s life, breast milk remains the main food, but the young begin to share the meal with their parents, choosing to taste what they prefer or from which they are most attracted.

The main difference between classic weaning and auto weaning is immediately evident. In basic self-weaning, homogenised or other ready-made foods dedicated to classic weaning are not used. Instead, we try to bring children closer to the same type of meal that adults eat . Paying much more attention, however, to the ingredients and to follow a healthier diet by the whole family.

This is why with self-weaning it is likely that not only the feeding of the child will change, but also that of the parents . Self-weaning defines a “new” way of introducing solid foods into the diet of the child who slowly learns to know the foods of adults, tasting the foods found on the table.

We think of children who do not like homogenised food and the typical baby food of the classic weaning and when the mother finds herself in front of a child who has no intention of finishing what she has on her plate. This problem with auto weaning does not arise. In fact, the child will not refuse food simply because he will choose what he wants to taste . L ‘ OM S advisable to wait until the sixth month before starting weaning and also the autosvezzamento aligns with this suggestion.

The decalogue of self-weaning

1) Wait for the baby to be 6 months old before starting weaning.

2) Leave the child free to touch, smell and taste the foods on the table.

3) Do not force the child to eat a certain food.

4) As soon as the child shows curiosity about the food of adults, try to make him taste a solid or semi-solid food.

5) Chop or chop the food so that it is easier for the baby to taste it.

6) Wait up to a year before offering the child foods that are likely to cause allergies , such as eggs, cow’s milk and fish.

7) Prepare dishes based on fresh and seasonal fruit and vegetables .

8) Bring healthy and colorful food to the table that can attract the child’s attention.

9) Reduce the use of salt and refined sugar . Parental health will also benefit.

10) Respect the autonomy of the child and observe his innate ability to manage his own nutrition.

Of course, parents will still have to pay close attention to the behavior of the child , who can sit at the table with them during lunch and dinner. In particular, the child may bring pieces of food that are too large for him to his mouth. In this case, always remember to cut the food into small pieces as suggested by the self-weaning decalogue.

Some parents may be afraid of the risk of suffocation . In any case, the baby is not left alone at the table and as in classic weaning it is always under the control of the parents. Each pediatrician should teach parents basic maneuvers for prompt intervention. It could be useful, for greater peace of mind, to watch a video dedicated to how to protect children from domestic accidents and how to help them.

The ideal to reassure parents would be to be followed by a pediatrician who approves self-weaning. Some pediatricians are still very attached to classic weaning, but this approach to feeding children is gradually spreading also in Italy and therefore both parents and experts in the sector would do well to deepen this topic to understand what are the real benefits of self-weaning for the growth of the child.

With which foods to start self-weaning

Now most likely you will be curious to know which foods to start weaning on . The advice in this case, if you think of a 6 or 7 month old baby, is to consider foods that can be grasped with your hands, divided into small pieces , which are neither too hard nor too soft.

Among the recommended foods to start self-weaning are stick carrots, boiled or steamed broccoli flowers, green beans, whole fusilli, slices of fruit such as peach, apricot, pear and melon, pieces of bread that are easy to swallow, making especially attention to the type of crumb.

Among the foods that it would be better to avoid , at least at the beginning, when the child is still small and must get used to the novelty, we find olives, grapes, overripe fruit, too large pasta shapes. Cereal grains and rice are allowed if the child likes to be fed.

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