An Honest Review of Baby Led Weaning
I’m not a baby-feeding expert. I only have one baby so far, and he’s only nine months old, so we’re still trying things out.
My only qualifications thus far are:
- I did read the book and tried Baby Led Weaning for at least a month. I have also fed my child purees so I can compare the methods.
- My child is basically a goat who will eat anything I put in his mouth, so I probably haven’t messed up too badly as far as introducing solids.
- I’m super lazy so anything I recommend is going to be easy and low-maintenance.
Here are the pros and cons of Baby Led Weaning (henceforth known as BLW) in my experience:
Con: Babies don’t have teeth
Give a baby a piece of apple. Sure, they can gnaw at it and eventually eat some of it. It only takes about a million years.
“Steam it!” you say. Okay, but then be prepared to lose approximately 10 years of your life due to anxiety about your baby choking.
If you have time to sit and watch your baby gnaw a piece of food for all of eternity, go for it. Meanwhile, I’ll be over here napping or watching Netflix or winning the Nobel Peace Prize with all of the time I saved while spoon-feeding my child. Also, if you have a child like mine who wants to eat all of the food right now, he will get frustrated that there’s no food actually going into his stomach. This will make him fussy, he will throw the apple on the floor in frustration, and the whole process starts over again.
Con: It’s a waste of food and money
I guess the food isn’t technically wasted if the dog eats it, but frankly I’m not in the habit of carefully preparing nutritious vegetables for a creature who also eats dead things outside.
Even if you don’t have a willing trash receptacle waiting for every morsel to hit the floor, I’m guessing you won’t be feeding your kid the food that he drops (unless you’re some god or goddess among parents whose floor is actually clean enough to eat off of). BLW basically meant that Ben would eat one eighth of a teaspoon of food, and the rest would go into the trash (or the dog’s mouth). I’m not a big stickler for a grocery budget, but even I can see that’s going to add up.
Con: It doesn’t save time
BLW claims that you’ll save time in food prep, because you can just feed baby whatever you’re having. Turns out that my diet doesn’t consist of mostly unseasoned, steamed vegetable and fruit wedges.
Let’s say, hypothetically, that I’m having a turkey sandwich with chips for lunch. Ben has zero teeth for chewing and a barely developed pincer grasp. How am I serving him what I’m eating? I’m still prepping a separate meal for Ben even if I’m not pureeing it, which doesn’t save me any time at all. And guess what? After I’ve spent…