Home > Babies and Toddlers > Babies > Feeding Your Baby > Starting Solids > How to Tell If Your Baby Likes a New Food
|

How to Tell If Your Baby Likes a New Food

Don't ignore your baby's signals about eating. Don't be deceived by facial expressions, though. If your child makes a face when tasting something new, he may be reacting to the novelty of the experience as much as the new taste itself. So, despite the face he makes, offer your baby a second spoonful. If he opens his mouth for more, you know you have a hit.

When your baby doesn't like the taste of a particular food, or when he has lost interest in eating from a spoon, he will send a clear signal. He might do one or more following:

  • Turn his head away
  • Close his mouth
  • Spit the food out
  • Push the food back out with his tongue
  • Get cranky

Don't give up too soon. Keep in mind that a lot of food will come back out or get pushed out during the first months of feeding. The skill of eating from a spoon takes some time to master. But when nearly all of the food you give your baby starts to come right back out, then you know that he's done.

If your baby refuses food in any of these ways, don't force-feed him. When introducing solids, your aim should be to make eating as fun and pleasurable as possible for both of you. If you try to force your baby to eat things he hates or to eat when he's bored, exhausted, cranky, or already full, you will make eating from a spoon an unpleasant experience: something he will not soon want to try again.

Be as responsive to your baby when introducing solid foods as you would be when introducing a new toy. If he's not interested (or loses interest) in a new toy, you probably won't continue shoving it into his face. Why respond any differently when introducing a new food?

Respect your infant's individual likes and dislikes. If he indicates he wants more of something, by all means give him more. But if he doesn't seem to like a particular food, give him something else instead. Then try the rejected food again in a few weeks. Who knows? His tastes may have changed by then.

The patterns you establish in the first months of feeding may influence your child's attitudes toward eating for many years to come. If you put pressure on him, you will create an air of tension around the act of eating that may last a lifetime. But if you can relax and have fun, your baby will probably do the same.

More on: Babies

|

Excerpted from The Complete Idiot's Guide to Bringing Up Baby © 1997 by Kevin Osborn. All rights reserved including the right of reproduction in whole or in part in any form. Used by arrangement with Alpha Books, a member of Penguin Group (USA) Inc.

To order this book visit the Idiot's Guide web site or call 1-800-253-6476.


stay connected

Sign up for our free email newsletters and receive the latest advice and information on all things parenting.

Enter your email address to sign up or manage your account.

Facebook icon Twitter icon Follow Us on Pinterest

editor’s picks

earth day

celebrate our
planet with
these activities
and crafts.

GO

highlights

Healthy Smile Checklist for Kids
Have better dental check-ups with this free printable checklist that helps keep your child flossing, brushing, and smiling! Brought to you by Philips Sonicare.

Kindergarten Readiness App
It's kindergarten registration time! Use this interactive kindergarten readiness checklist, complete with fun games and activities, to practice the essential skills your child needs for this next big step. Download the Kindergarten Readiness app today!

8 Easter Egg Decorating Ideas
Need some fun ideas for decorating Easter eggs with the kids? Look no further for colorful and cool designs!

7 Ways to Curb Kids' Exposure to Violence
American children are exposed to violence more often than you might think. Learn how to limit your child's exposure to violence and manage the mental health and behavioral effects it can cause.