If you are thinking of starting to introduce solid foods to your baby, there are some signs that can be seen to help you determine when the right time to give MPASI is. You should know these signs, so you don't give them too early.
Characteristics of babies which are ready to MPASI:
- Can hold his head. Your baby should be able to maintain a stable head position to eat his first meal.
- Can sit with support. You may have to lap your baby first, but after that high chairs can be used when he can sit alone.
- Make a chewing motion. Your baby should be able to move the food behind his mouth and swallow it. As your baby learns to swallow the food efficiently, you may notice that he is less likely to drool than usual. Also maybe he already has one or two teeth.
- Have a healthy weight. Many babies are ready to eat semi-solid food when they have reached two times their birth weight. This could happen around the age of 6 months.
- Interested with what you eat. When you are eating, he often tries to take the food and tries to put it in his mouth.
- He has a good hand and mouth coordination. He can see, take, and put food into his own mouth.
Even though you have already seen some signs that your baby is ready to eat his first solid meal, but it would be much better if you wait until the baby is around six months age. Waiting for up to six months to give your baby the first solid meal will protect his health. This can reduce the chances of developing allergies or getting infections from the food, because at the age of six months the immune system and digestion are stronger.
It is also important to wait up to six months old especially if the baby has a history of allergies or celiac disease in the family. Celiac disease is triggered by gluten in wheat.
If you are planning to start giving solid food to your baby before 6 months, you should discuss it with your doctor.