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Ready for Solids?

Over 12 months

Breast milk/formula
Whole cow's milk (not skim or low-fat; fat is essential for brain growth) replaces formula or supplements nursing  -- about three 8-ounce servings per day.

Watch for
Don't be alarmed if your baby goes on a food jag (only pasta and peas, no fruit for days). While you wait for this "picky phase" to pass, consider the foods she's eaten over the course of a week rather than on one day. Also, around the first birthday growth tends to slow down a bit, so you can expect her appetite to decrease as well.

Start with
Offer a variety of healthy foods three times a day. A rough guide to the amount she'll eat in a day: 4 to 8 tablespoons of fruits and vegetables, 4 servings of breads and cereals (a serving is ¼ slice of bread, 2 tablespoons of rice, pasta, etc.), and 2 tablespoons of protein, such as meat or poultry.

Move to
Get into the habit of eating together with your baby at least once a day, if possible. She'll enjoy the socializing that comes with mealtime and will start to look forward to this routine each day.

You know soda has no place in your baby's daily diet. Be just as cautious with high-fat and sugar-loaded items. By choosing healthy foods now, you'll teach your baby to prefer them later in life.