For 7 Month Old Babies can start to nibble more and need good quality, nutritious meals to support their growing bodies. This article looks at the best first solid foods for your baby, and how they can help with their development. What can you feed a 7 month old? I enjoy the challenge of feeding a 7 month old, but this stage can also be challenging for picky babies. You’re going to have to find something distracting or fun to get them to eat–and that’s not such an easy task.
The benefits of healthy eating are well known. Kids in particular need a nutritious diet that’s low-fat, high in fiber and rich in vitamins and minerals to help support normal growth and development for as long as possible.
Food For 7 Month Old Babies
Baby Feeding at Seven Months
Oh, what a lovely mess! Baby feeding at seven months can be just a little chaotic as small people learn how to eat from a spoon and exert their independence. Because, while being fed a range of lovely purees is pretty special, the average seven month old can’t resist trying to feed themselves as well. Expect plenty of hand and arm waving as your baby tries to match their desire and skill in grabbing onto the spoon and directing it somewhere near their mouth.
What Should I Feed My 7 Month Old for Dinner?
Don’t feel you need to be an expert cook when it comes to your 7 month old’s menu planning. At this age their taste buds are still developing and very sensitive; they don’t have a gourmet’s palate.
Aim for simple preparation of vegetables, fruits, cereals and dairy foods which maximises the nutritional content. For vegetables especially, short cooking times and using minimal water helps to lock in flavour and nutrients.
Red meat is a valuable source of iron, zinc and Vitamin B 12, and even the smallest amounts will provide important nutrients to your baby’s growing body. White meats too, such as chicken and pork, are ideal at this age. Just make sure you cook all meat and animal sourced foods very well.
Helpful Tips for Feeding Your Seven Month Old
- Cook fresh food in batches and freeze individual serves until needed.
- For those times when you need a more convenient option, try to find the most nutritious options and check the back of labels to make sure they are free from any chemicals, pesticides or artificial additives, colours or flavourings.
- Strap your baby into a highchair for meals. This is an age of increasing mobility and preparation for crawling, so restrain them with a five point harness.
- Offer your baby small pieces of food on the tray of their highchair. Good options for finger foods are cut up pieces of (cooked) vegetables, pasta, and fruit.
- Give your baby a spoon to practice with. You can still be their main feeder with a separate spoon, but support their attempts at self-feeding as well.
Should I Continue Breastfeeding My 7 Month Old?
Stick to the guide of breastfeed first and solids after. At this age and stage, breast milk still needs to be the primary source of your baby’s nutrition. Offer both breasts when you feed your baby. A little break between sides may help persuade them to accept the second breast.
Say goodbye to those long drawn out feeding times. At seven months your baby will know just how to obtain a full feed and empty your breasts in a few short minutes. Some babies love to comfort suck and will continue sucking for the sheer pleasure of it rather than to obtain more breast milk.
Try to avoid continual snacking of either breast milk or solid foods. Aim to offer solids within around 30 minutes of finishing a breastfeed. Grouping milk and solids in this way will help to create a couple of hours spacing between feeds and give structure to a busy day.
Should I Continue Bottle Feeding My 7 Month Old?
Keep offering formula before solids at seven months. While solids are undoubtedly important, it’s milk which your baby still needs as a priority right now. They also need the water which is contained in milk. Babies who overtake their formula intake with solids can become constipated and don’t thrive as they need to.
Discard any leftover formula and what hasn’t been accepted within one hour of starting each feed. Milk is the perfect medium for bacteria to grow and it’s important to be conscious of offering freshly prepared formula and not extend feed times.
Mix any leftover formula with your baby’s solids. Doing this ensures they are getting important nutrients and minimises waste. Cereal, vegetables, white sauces and milky solids are all good options of using up formula which hasn’t been accepted at bottle feeds.
Consider if your baby is having too much milk if they’re refusing solids. Some babies love their bottle so much that they’re really not interested in any other food.
What Can a 7 Month Old Eat?
Your baby’s biggest organ lies between their ears. Their brain is quite literally a sponge and will absorb whatever nutrients it can access. Emotional stimulation is another type of ‘food’ for your baby and it is the combination of both which will optimise your baby’s potential as they grow and develop.
Make healthy food choices which will support your baby’s growth. Get into the habit of asking yourself “will this support my baby’s growing body”?
Aim for a colourful range of vegetables and fruits. According to Nutrition Australia it pays to “Eat a rainbow”. Different colours indicate different nutrients e.g. yellow foods (like carrot and pumpkin) contain Vitamin A, while green vegetables contain a range of photochemicals and folate.
Tips for Feeding Your 7 Month Old
- View solids as an “add-on” for now. Although important, they don’t supply the important nutrients and fluid your baby needs to grow and stay hydrated.
- Offer your baby food from your own plate, give them a taste of what you’re eating. As long as it’s healthy food and not a choking risk, your seven month old can have the same foods.
- Role model healthy eating behaviours. You are your baby’s greatest teacher and from you they will learn how and what to eat. Be mindful of your own eating practices and reinforce healthy eating messages by being consistent.
- Aim for fresh foods where possible.
Food For 7 Month Old Babies
When your baby hits the seven-month mark, he/she gears up for some important physical milestones like sitting up, teething, etc. Providing the right kind of nourishment in this critical growth period is very important for the baby. During this time, the baby receives the essential nutritional supplements from both, breast milk/formula milk and solid food. Here are some amazing options for healthy food for a 7-month baby that you can incorporate into your child’s diet.
Best Foods for Seven Month Old Babies
After introducing a few solid foods to your baby at six months, you can slowly diversify the options and incorporate more variety by the next month. Here are some interesting options for solid food for a 7 month baby.
1. Fruit Puree
Fruits are a great source of vitamins, minerals and fibre. Fruits like apple, chikoo, papaya, banana, watermelon, avocado, etc. are great options for a snack or a meal.
Vegetables contain essential multi-vitamins and minerals. Different nutritious vegetables can be given, by steaming them and making a puree. Steamed vegetable wedges can also be fed to the baby as an excellent snack.
Porridges made from single grain cereals make for a great nutritional supplement for babies. Grains like rice, wheat, oats, barley, millets etc. can be processed and powdered to make a porridge mix.
4. Meat Puree
Meat, such as chicken, are high protein and carbohydrate foods that can be introduced to babies in the form of a puree.
Egg is a popular source of healthy fat and protein. It can be given to babies in bite-sized pieces after boiling.
Cheese made from pasteurised milk is widely available in the market. It is rich in fat, protein and vitamins, and babies love it as well.
Kichdi, made out of rice, wheat, or dal, with mild spice and salt is a filling and nutritious meal for small babies. This also serves as their first taste of adult food.
Typically, babies who are seven months old take three solid food meals and two snacks in between. Breastfeeding in the morning and night, with some mid-day feeding sessions are also part of the routine.
Typically, babies consume about a quarter cup of puree or porridge in a single meal. Based on the demand, you can increase the quantity. Babies also consume an average of 800-900 ml of Breast milk or formula milk.
7-Month-Old Baby Food: A Cheat Sheet for Parents
Feeding your baby as he or she grows may pose a confusing and frustrating dilemma. How much baby food should a 7-month-old eat? Can you begin cooking for your child? What are some 7-month-old baby food recipes? Let’s find out.
Just like with adults, every child is slightly different and thus has a unique appetite. Babies are born with the innate ability to self-regulate feeding capacity. In other words, they know when they are finished or full.
You’ve probably already taken note of this during breastfeeding. They’ll latch on when they’re hungry and stop when they’re satisfied. If you’ve had trouble with this, consider looking into how to use a nipple shield while breastfeeding to address latching issues.
You’ll likely be able to tell when your baby is ready for solid food, since they’ll show obvious signs of agitation and hunger after breastfeeding. Usually, this happens at about the 6-month mark, and baby food for a 7-month-old frequently starts to consist of more solid foods. The signs of readiness for solid foods include hand-to-mouth coordination, decreased tongue protrusion reflex, sitting without support, and opening mouth to spoon. You may continue breastfeeding, as well, until you decide an appropriate time to stop.
Perhaps you’ve already been feeding your baby solids for a month or so, but you want to make sure you have your information straight, or maybe you’ve been wondering how many jars of baby food for a 7-month-old is appropriate. You’ve come to the right place. Let’s take a closer look.
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When you’re ready to start feeding your baby solid food, you’ve got an array of options to choose from. These foods help ensure that your baby gets sufficient amounts of the nutrients and vitamins they need to continue down the road of healthy development.
Before you dive into the list, make sure you only introduce a little bit of one food at a time — about 1–2 tablespoons to start is good. New foods should be introduced individually and about a week apart in order to identify any allergies and intolerance the baby may have. It’s best to introduce foods from most bland to sweetest.
If you haven’t already started feeding your child solids, start with the following baby food for your 7-month-old:
- Pea puree: Peas have iron, protein, calcium, Vitamin A, and Vitamin C, which are all important for encouraging and promoting the healthy development of your child.
- Baby brown rice cereal: This cereal is easy to digest and it’s unlikely that your child will suffer an allergic reaction to it.
- Baked sweet potato puree: Adults benefits from sweet potatoes, so it shouldn’t come as a surprise that your baby will benefit from this antioxidant, nutrient, and vitamin blend.
- Banana Puree: Bananas are easy to digest and won’t upset the stomach. However, avoid feeding your child too much, as a lot of banana can result in constipation, which isn’t fun for you or your baby.
- Carrot Puree: Babies usually love carrot puree because of the sweet taste. It’s also packed full of antioxidants and various vitamins and minerals.
- Avocado Puree: This can provide a pleasant texture and introduce good fats into your child’s diet.
If you’ve already introduced solid baby food for your 7-month-old, you may begin slowly presenting more thick purees and foods to your child’s diet, including:
- Pumpkin thyme puree: It’s loaded with iron, potassium, and beta carotene.
- Varieties of veggies: Puree different vegetable combinations, such as spinach with yams.
- Fruits: New fruits may include pears, papayas, and blueberries. Blend them into a puree for easy eating.
Avoid foods that are choking risks, including small fruits, raw vegetables, nuts, candy, gum, and whole grapes. Children under the age of five are at risk of choking on grapes and similarly shaped foods, and parents should cut them in half or quarters.
Benefits Of Healthy Eating For Kids
A healthy diet is important throughout your life, but early on, nutritious vittles are especially important. While no one eats “perfectly,” and foods like sugary sweets are okay in moderation, a diet based on nutrient-rich foods can promote physical and mental health while helping your child feel energized and in overall positive moods.
1. Normal Development
When your child is growing, nutritious foods can help ensure normal development. Children need sufficient amounts of calcium and vitamin D for strong, healthy bones, for example. Children ages 4 to 8 need 1,000 milligrams of calcium. This increases to 1,300 milligrams daily from ages 9 to 18. Most kids can meet their needs for these nutrients through foods such as low-fat or reduced-fat dairy products, which are fortified with both. Fortified cereals, dark leafy greens and salmon also provide calcium.
2. A Healthy Body Weight
Ideal body weight varies from person to person, but eating nutritious foods lends itself to appetite control, making it easier for your child to stay within his recommended weight range. An analysis of data published in Nutrition Reviews in 2015 showed that children’s diets changed dramatically through preschool years, with spikes in added sugar intake that stayed around until adolescence. Eating primarily low-nutrient processed fare was linked with obesity development at midchildhood. Rather than focus on weight with your child, which can fuel poor body image and unhealthy eating habits, cultivate health-promoting habits for your whole family. Make nutritious foods available and seek fun ways to incorporate them into meals and snacks.
3. Stronger Immune Function
Stronger immune function can mean fewer bugs like colds and the flu. Fruits and vegetables can help kids get there. A study published in the journal Lung in 2017 analyzed the diets and respiratory health of children in 11 different Latin American countries. The researchers linked high fruit and vegetable intake with a reduced risk for rhinoconjunctivitis, which causes nasal symptoms, congestion and red eyes, and for the common skin condition, eczema. Routine fast-food burger intake was linked with a higher risk for these types of conditions.
4. Better Brain Function
A healthy diet really fuels the brain, making kids more likely to focus easily and perform well at school. Foods especially helpful for children’s brain function are the same ones that benefit adults. They include fatty fish, such as salmon; eggs, for the memory-supportive choline in the yolk; and peanut or almond butter, both of which supply vitamin E. Vitamin E is an antioxidant that helps the brain use glucose as fuel. Whole grains are additional healthy brain foods for kids, due to their content of B vitamins and fiber.