General

How much food should my baby eat? A visual guide

How much food should my baby eat? A visual guide


We are searching data for your request:

Forums and discussions:
Manuals and reference books:
Data from registers:
Wait the end of the search in all databases.
Upon completion, a link will appear to access the found materials.

  • Let your baby decide how much to eat

    Do you worry that your baby is eating too little or too much? Your baby will self-regulate her food intake based on what her body needs, so let her appetite be your guide.

    If you'd like a reference point, however, here are photos of how much solid food a baby typically eats in a day. You can also ask your baby's doctor for feeding advice.

    This visual guide shows:

    • Portions for infants who are new to solids (typically 4 to 6 months)
    • Two sample meals for a younger baby (6 to 8 months)
    • Three sample meals and two snacks for an older baby (8 to 12 months) from a menu developed by the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP)

    Your little one may eat less or more than what's shown here. Your job is to provide a variety of healthy foods at regular intervals without pressure, and her job is to decide what and how much to eat.

    Food photos by Karla Martin

  • Watch for signs your baby is full

    Lots of factors – including activity level, growth spurts or plateaus, illness, and teething – will affect your baby's appetite, which can vary daily.

    End feeding when he signals that he's done. Signs of being full include:

    • Turning his head away
    • Refusing to open his mouth for another bite after he's swallowed (resist the urge to encourage your baby to have one last spoonful)
    • Leaning back in his chair
    • Playing with the spoon or food rather than eating
  • Start with small amounts once a day (4 to 6 months)

    When your baby is developmentally ready for solids, typically around 4 to 6 months, talk to his doctor about introducing solid foods. The first bites are mostly about him getting used to the idea of having something different in his mouth.

    • Start with a very small amount, 1 to 2 teaspoons, of a single-ingredient puree.
    • Gradually increase to 1 to 2 tablespoons of food once a day.
    • Follow your baby's fullness cues.

    Popular first foods include pureed mango, banana, chicken, turkey, beef, peas, sweet potatoes, and infant cereal. It's up to you what food to start with, but wait 3 to 5 days between introducing each new food to make sure your baby doesn't have an allergic reaction or food intolerance. (And remember, no cow's milk or honey until age 1.)

  • Transition to two meals (6 to 8 months)

    As your little one gets more comfortable with solids, you can increase the frequency of meals and variety of food.

    • Transition from one to two meals a day, typically by 8 months.
    • Over time, add a second food to each meal. The photo above is an example of a meal with two foods.
    • Once you've worked up to two meals with two foods each, aim for a balance of proteins, vegetables, fruits, and grains in her daily diet.
    • Whenever you introduce a new food, start with a very small amount, a teaspoon or two, to allow your baby to get used to its flavor and texture.
    • Start with a soupy consistency. Gradually add more texture as her eating skills improve.

    Expect her intake of breast milk or formula to go down. She'll start drinking less of it as she eats more solid foods. Provide healthy options at mealtimes, and let her choose how much to eat.

    Note: The jars in all photos are standard 4-ounce baby food jars.

  • Breakfast for a younger baby (6 to 8 months)

    Cereal and fruit make an easy combination for a morning meal.

    Grain: Iron-fortified, whole-grain infant cereal is a popular first grain. At 6 months, a typical daily portion of infant cereal mixed with breast milk or formula might be 2 to 3 tablespoons, increasing to 4 to 8 tablespoons (1/4 to 1/2 cup) by 8 months.

    Fruit: Babies love the natural sweetness of fruits like pears, apples, berries, prunes, and stone fruits. Between 6 and 8 months, a baby will typically transition from about 2 to 3 tablespoons of fruit puree a day to 4 to 8 tablespoons (1/4 to 1/2 cup) of mashed or minced fruit.

  • Dinner for a younger baby (6 to 8 months)

    If you serve a grain and fruit in the morning, consider offering a protein-rich food and vegetable later in the day. Your child may eat more or less than the amounts shown.

    Protein: A baby might transition from eating 1 to 2 tablespoons of meat puree at 6 months to 2 to 4 tablespoons at 8 months, for example. Other good protein sources include cheese, unsweetened plain whole-milk yogurt, tofu, beans, and lentils.

    Vegetables: Between 6 and 8 months, a baby will typically transition from about 2 to 3 tablespoons of vegetable puree a day to 4 to 8 tablespoons (1/4 to 1/2 cup). Try classic favorites like carrots, spinach, or butternut squash, as well as less traditional first foods such as parsnips, beets, or asparagus.

    As your child's eating skills improve, gradually add more texture by dicing or mincing foods.

  • Transition to three meals and add snacks (8 to 12 months)

    By 8 months or so, your baby is likely getting the hang of eating and needs to eat more calories to support his growing body. But since his little belly can't hold a lot of food, he'll need to eat more often. Every baby is different, but this may be a good time to try offering a third solid food meal.

    During this period:

    • Continue to give your baby breast milk or formula.
    • Add morning and afternoon snacks. (Some babies this age are happy with breast milk or formula as their snack, while others gravitate toward solid foods.) Once you've added a third meal and snacks, your baby will be eating or drinking something about every two to three hours.
    • Continue to aim for a mix of proteins, vegetables, fruits, and grains.
    • Introduce coarser and chunkier textures, for example, by dicing or mincing food instead of pureeing it, and graduate to soft finger foods as your baby's eating skills improve.
    • Provide healthy options, and let your baby choose how much to eat.

    To visualize daily portions for an 8- to 12-month-old, check out the following photos of a typical day's menu for a baby this age, developed by the AAP.

    Your child may eat more or less than these amounts. Talk to his doctor for advice.

  • Breakfast for an older baby (8 to 12 months)

    The AAP sample menu for a baby 8 to 12 months features a breakfast consisting of:

    • 4 to 8 tablespoons (1/4 to 1/2 cup) whole-grain infant cereal mixed with formula or breast milk
    • 4 to 8 tablespoons (1/4 to 1/2 cup) diced fruit

    Note: This is an example. Your baby may eat different foods and amounts.

  • Morning snack for an older baby (8 to 12 months)

    The AAP sample menu for a baby 8 to 12 months features a morning snack consisting of:

    • 4 tablespoons (1/4 cup) diced cheese or cooked vegetables

    Note: This is an example of a morning snack, which babies typically add sometime between 8 and 12 months. Your baby may eat different foods and amounts.

  • Lunch for an older baby (8 to 12 months)

    The AAP sample menu for a baby 8 to 12 months features a lunch consisting of:

    • 4 to 8 tablespoons (1/4 to 1/2 cup) unsweetened plain whole-milk yogurt or cottage cheese, or minced meat
    • 4 to 8 tablespoons (1/4 to 1/2 cup) diced or mashed yellow or orange vegetable

    Note: This is an example. Your baby may eat different foods and amounts.

  • Afternoon snack for an older baby (8 to 12 months)

    The AAP sample menu for a baby 8 to 12 months features an afternoon snack consisting of:

    • 4 tablespoons (1/4 cup) diced fruit or unsweetened plain whole-milk yogurt
    • 1 whole-grain teething biscuit or cracker

    Note: This is an example of an afternoon snack, which babies typically add sometime between 8 and 12 months. Your baby may eat different foods and amounts.

  • Dinner for older baby (8 to 12 months)

    The AAP sample menu for a baby 8 to 12 months features a dinner consisting of:

    • 4 tablespoons (1/4 cup) minced or ground poultry or meat, or diced tofu
    • 4 to 8 tablespoons (1/4 to 1/2) cup diced, cooked green vegetable
    • 4 tablespoons (1/4 cup) noodles, pasta, rice, or potato
    • 4 tablespoons (1/4 cup) diced fruit

    Note: This is an example. Your baby may eat different foods and amounts.

  • How much should my baby drink once she starts eating solids?

    Breast milk or formula will fully meet your child's hydration needs until she's about 6 months old. She may start drinking less as solid foods become a bigger part of her diet. Here are typical daily amounts by age – your baby's intake may be different, however.

    6 to 8 months: 24 to 32 ounces of formula, or continued breastfeeding on demand

    8 to 12 months: 24 ounces of formula, or continued breastfeeding on demand

    Water: You can offer your baby water once she starts eating solids, but let her self-regulate how much she drinks. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends giving babies who are 6 to 12 months old 4 to 6 ounces of water a day, but what your baby decides to drink may vary. She may drink more on a hot day, for example.

  • Your baby has the final say

    Keep in mind that these portions are an estimate. The truth is, every baby is different, and there's no set amount of food that's appropriate for every baby at every stage.

    If you're worried about whether your baby is eating enough – or too much – the best advice is to look for and respond to signs that your baby is full.

    Your baby's doctor will chart her weight gain at regular intervals. If the doctor sees a consistent growth curve and doesn't have other concerns, she's most likely eating the right amount of food.

    Hungry for more?


  • Watch the video: How to Use Your Hand to Measure Portion Sizes (May 2022).

    Video, Sitemap-Video, Sitemap-Videos