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Infants, Vitamin, Ideas / How-Tos

Your child’s first 12 months of life are marked by milestone after milestone, from studying find out how to roll over, sit up and crawl to rising these first few child tooth and experiencing “actual” meals for the very first time. One particularly thrilling milestone is the transfer away from easy Stage 1 purees into the extra complicated taste and texture mixtures of Stage 2.

This temporary information covers the highlights of this necessary dietary transition on your child, together with when to introduce Stage 2 child meals, which blends to serve first and find out how to know when it’s time to maneuver on.

What’s the Distinction Between Stage 1 and a pair of Child Meals?

Child meals phases might be complicated as a result of there’s no set customary for labeling these merchandise. Completely different manufacturers might use barely completely different naming conventions (some even provide Stage 4!) and will checklist completely different really useful age ranges for every stage.

No matter branding or particular naming, nonetheless, the principle distinction between Stage 1 and Stage 2 child meals comes down to 2 key traits:

  • Elements: Whereas Stage 1 child meals are produced from a single ingredient, Stage 2 child meals mix two or extra elements collectively. They might nonetheless have fruits and veggies as the first ingredient, however Stage 2 meals typically incorporate meats, legumes and grains as effectively.
  • Texture: Stage 1 child meals are very easily pureed and are soupy sufficient to drip off of a spoon, whereas Stage 2 meals could also be roughly pureed, blended or strained. They preserve a thicker, denser consistency and will embody small chunks on your child to gum round of their mouth. 

Whereas all Stage 2 child meals provide extra superior textures and ingredient mixtures, there’s an excessive amount of selection when it comes to how these meals are made. At Nurture Life, we take the chance to not solely introduce nutrient-rich elements in our Stage 2 child meals supply but in addition to include various flavors that stability candy and savory, new and outdated. We additionally deal with providing all kinds of proteins to make sure your infant expands past fruit and veggies and begins receiving a extra well-rounded meal.

As a result of analysis exhibits that style choice and palate growth begin as early as infancy, we encourage diversified consuming with our artistic Stage 2 blends:

Is My Child Able to Begin Stage 2 Meals?

The transfer from Stage 1 to Stage 2 will rely in your child’s particular person growth. As a result of each child develops on their very own timeline, there isn’t any hard-and-fast, one-size-fits-all “Stage 2 child meals age.” As a substitute, you may consider this transition as a pure continuation of your child’s meals journey, from first making an attempt stable meals in Stage 1 to now exploring their full potential together purees.

Stage 1: Introducing Solids

Most infants begin consuming stable meals round 4–6 months, relying on once they present indicators that they’re prepared for solids:

  • Sitting up unassisted
  • Demonstrating regular head management
  • Shedding the “extrusion reflex” (the place the tongue pushes meals ahead within the mouth moderately than again)
  • Expressing curiosity about what others are consuming

Whereas vitamin ought to nonetheless come from breast milk or formulation throughout this time, Stage 1 meals are necessary for getting your child used to the flavors, textures and sensation of meals in addition to figuring out any allergic reactions or sensitivities. 

Stage 2: Experimenting With Solids

After a number of months of Stage 1 single-ingredient purees, infants will begin expressing readiness for the following part of their consuming journey: extra sorts of meals, thicker textures and bigger parts. To know when to begin Stage 2 meals, be careful for indicators and milestones which will embody:

  • Ending a single-ingredient puree and seeming hungry for extra
  • Having the ability to swallow Stage 1 meals with out the tongue thrusting it instantly again out
  • Having tried a wide range of Stage 1 purees in numerous meals classes, resembling greens, fruits, legumes and grains
  • No indicators or signs of allergic reactions or intolerance to any of the Stage 1 purees

By way of age, many infants begin Stage 2 combo child purees round Eight months, however strive to not fret an excessive amount of over the precise timeline. Similar to with the introduction of Stage 1, your child will let you understand once they’re prepared!

What are the Greatest Stage 2 Starter Meals?

As you progress to Stage 2 child meals mixtures, it’s finest to begin with elements that your child already is aware of and accepts. For instance, in case your child loves single-ingredient carrot purees, strive providing a primary Stage 2 mixture that serves up this vibrant veggie with one thing new—like Nurture Life’s Beef & Carrot. Not solely does this assist with acceptance, nevertheless it additionally helps be certain that your child tolerates every new ingredient you introduce. To ease the transition, you may even combine a number of the new Stage 2 mixture into the outdated Stage 1 standby!

As soon as your baby has adjusted to comparatively delicate blends like this, you may transfer on to extra “grown up” elements like barely bitter veggies (kale, anybody?) or stronger herbs and spices.

How Lengthy Ought to My Child Eat Stage 2 Meals?

The window for Stage 2 meals usually lasts anyplace from 1–Four months, relying on when your child began Stage 2 and once they present indicators of readiness for Stage 3. For many infants, the transition to Stage Three meals (additionally referred to as “finger meals”) will happen round 10 months of age.

Indicators of readiness for Stage Three typically focus on an curiosity in self-feeding:

  • Pushing your hand away once you feed
  • Reaching for the spoon as you feed
  • Taking part in with plates or bowls at mealtime
  • Demonstrating larger hand-eye coordination
  • Mastering (or nearly mastering!) the pincer grasp

Once more, strive to not fear in regards to the actual date; your child’s transfer to Stage Three meals will occur every time they’re developmentally prepared. For extra tips about transferring past mixture purees, take a look at our information to transitioning to Stage Three child meals.

Wherever your child is of their consuming journey, it’s by no means too early to work towards growing a wholesome, well-rounded diet that can final for a lifetime. If in case you have any questions on when to begin Stage 2 child meals or find out how to extra easily transition between phases, Nurture Life’s baby vitamin specialists would love to assist. Simply attain out to us at [email protected]!

Lara Field at Nurture Life

Lara Subject

Lara has been working with Nurture Life since its inception, collaborating with the culinary workforce on the creation of all menus and recipes to make sure they’re nutritionally acceptable and appropriately proportioned for each age and stage of a kid’s growth and offering pediatric vitamin experience to Nurture Life clients. Lara is the proprietor/founding father of FEED—Forming Early Consuming Choices, a vitamin consulting apply specializing in pediatric vitamin and digestive illnesses. Lara has over a decade of expertise in scientific apply at two of the highest ranked pediatric hospitals within the nation, Lurie Kids’s Hospital and College of Chicago Medical Middle. Lara obtained her B.S. from the College of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and M.S. and dietetic internship from Rush College Medical Middle in Chicago, Illinois. Lara actually enjoys the method of consuming (and feeding!), from procuring the elements at varied grocery shops and farmers markets, to organizing her pantry/fridge at residence to make it simple to pick wholesome choices, to getting ready balanced meals together with her kids. Whether or not it’s a decadent deal with to a hearty, home-cooked meal, there isn’t any larger satisfaction for Lara than having fun with meals together with her household.