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Embracing Baby Led Weaning: A Modern Parenting Approach

Updated: Jul 10

Elizabeth Regin returns with more Modern Parenting adventures. This month, she shares her personal journey on baby led weaning with little Victoria and Henri in celebration of National Parents Day on July 28.


Read other Modern Parenting articles by Elizabeth:


Before my first baby was born, my knowledge of introducing solids to babies was limited. I only knew about ready-made meals in pots that you can buy at the supermarket and puree machines at the baby shops.


As I delved into more research, I found a method of feeding that has taken on a trend called Baby-Led Weaning (BLW). BLW is giving your baby solid foods instead of just purees and mashed food. This method has revolutionised the way we approach feeding our babies, and I believe it’s a reflection of how modern parenting is evolving.

 Etienne and Henri enjoying feeding time | Brilliant Online Australia Singapore UK | Brilliant Online
Etienne and little Henri enjoying meal times together!

The Modern Parent's advantage

Thanks to the generous maternity and parental leave policies in the EU,  we modern parents can truly immerse ourselves in the early stages of our children’s lives. This support allows us to explore methods like BLW, where babies self-feed with real food instead of purees. This a unique advantage that many of us cherish and utilise to its fullest.


Victoria and Henri’s solid foods journey

Traditionally, we believed that babies should start with purees or soft foods like porridge but soon discovered the benefits of BLW. It was a transformative experience for both Victoria and Henri.


Watch Henri's delicious BLW experience!


Signs of readiness and the BLW method

For those new to BLW, it’s essential to recognise the signs of readiness in your baby: they should be able to hold their head up and sit in a high chair. Introducing a variety of fresh foods helps them become open-minded eaters, rather than picky ones. Parents now document their BLW journeys on Instagram, sharing recipes and tips, and creating a supportive and informative community. I found databases incredibly helpful for understanding how to serve different foods at various stages - large pieces at six months, smaller pieces at nine months, and normal serving sizes from twelve months onwards.

Victoria's BLW journey  | Brilliant Online Australia Singapore UK | Brilliant Online
Victoria exploring healthy, delicious foods!

Safety First

Education on choking hazards and first aid is crucial. Always being present during meal times is non-negotiable. BLW teaches babies to chew correctly, which many of us might not realise is a learned skill.


Flavour exploration

Don’t shy away from herbs and spices. Constant exposure to different flavours can help develop a baby’s palate. For Victoria, this meant her childcare providers were always amazed at her meals. By twelve months, she was using utensils and eating neatly. Henri, on the other hand,  preferred to be fed until he was around eight or nine months before starting to self-feed and use utensils.


Watch how well little Victoria feeds herself!


Commercialisation of baby foods

The rise of purees and ready-made meals stems from the commercialising of baby products, designed to save parents time. However, BLW encourages us to cook meals ourselves, knowing exactly what our children are eating. While this method is more time-consuming and messy, the benefits far outweigh these minor inconveniences.


Benefits and practical tips

BLW allows babies to eat fresh, healthy food and develop their preferences, making them independent and open-minded eaters. Many BLW recipes are suitable for the whole family - just remember to exclude salt and sugar for the babies. My go-to resource for food information is Solidstarts.com, where I can find detailed instructions on how to serve different foods at various ages.


Convenience and balance

In France, ready-made meals for babies, known as "small pots", have evolved to include organic and bio options, with companies even offering portioned meats for quick meals. I sometimes use these for convenience, especially during appointments with Henri.


Modern parenting is about finding the healthiest choices and balancing them with convenience. Every parent does their best, and that’s what matters most.
Victoria eager to have her meals | Brilliant Online Australia Singapore UK | Brilliant Online
What's cooking, mum?

A memorable experience

For me, BLW has been one of the most fun and memorable aspects of raising Victoria and Henri. Watching their progress and seeing the benefits firsthand has been incredibly rewarding. Happy Parents Day to all the wonderful parents out there, striving to give their best every day.


Here’s to embracing the joys and challenges of modern parenting and making the most of the support and resources available to us. Follow Elizabeth Regin @DolceVitaLuxMom for more Modern Parenting adventures!


For inspiration and recipes, you can check out some of my favourite Instagram accounts:



Happy feeding, and enjoy the journey! 🍎🍌🍓🥭🥦🥒🌽🧀🍗🧇

 

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