I’ve always been a proponent of baby-led weaning (baby signals when it is time to stop breastfeeding). Unfortunately for many children, whether on formula or breastmilk, this occurs when solids are introduced. 40% of parents introduce solid food too soon.
Pediatricians suggest that babies should be on breast milk or formula until they reach the age of at least 6 months. The American Academy of Pediatrics first said that 4 months was acceptable, a rule that was advised for 20 years. Evidence supporting the health benefits of feeding babies breast milk caused experts to increase the age to 6 months. Although the group said that babies should be fed only breast milk for those first six months, mothers have the option of turning to baby formula instead.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) conducted a nationwide survey and found that many mothers are giving babies solid food too soon. According to the data obtained from 1,334 mothers, 40 percent gave their baby solid food before they reached 4 months of age and 9 percent started their babies as early as 4 weeks old. A study detailing the results was published Monday (March 25) in the journal, Pediatrics.