Weaning is when you introduce solid food into your baby's diet alongside their usual breast/formula or combination milk feeds. Weaning is advised to start at 6 months of age. Up to this point, babies get everything they need to grow and be healthy from their milk.
Introducing solid food too early can increase the chance of your baby becoming an overweight baby or child. Being overweight greatly increases the chance of health problems such as diabetes in childhood and later in life. It is also important to wait until your baby can eat food safely to reduce risks such as choking.
It can be difficult to know if your baby is ready to move on to food. They may start to show signs they are interested in your food or be asking for more milk. Before 6 months these are often normal signs that your baby just needs more milk. There are 3 clear signs that your baby is ready to try solid foods and that it is safe to do so;
They can hold their head and sit steadily
They can pick things up and put them in their mouth
When you try giving your baby food, they swallow it instead of spitting it out.
Watch this short animation to find out if your baby is ready yet and follow the links below for more information on weaning your baby.