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Your baby's health is your priority and a proper feeding schedule will ensure his/her good health. Read on to find a complete food guide/chart for babies.

Baby Feeding Chart

Anxiety over feeding your newborn can drive you into frenzy! Most new parents are often worried about how often and how much they should feed their little ones. What more, contradictory advices from friends and folks like feed your baby when hungry or feed your newborns after every two hours can make you feel quite helpless? Coming up with the right feeding chart for your baby can be quite an accomplishment. Babies are highly erratic and vary from each other in more ways than one. So what works for one baby may not work for the other. This surmounts the confusion for the parents who are left unsure about the right feeding chart for their baby and which feeding plan to follow. Read this article to get a clear picture on how to go about making the right feeding chart for your baby.

Food Guide For Babies
Here is a complete food guide for your little one. This chart is meant to be a rough guideline on what and how much to feed your child from birth to 12 months.

From Birth to 4 Months
A newborn baby’s stomach is roughly the size of a grape and requires very little food in the beginning. During this stage of infancy, a baby turns towards nipple for sustenance.

What To Feed
The best recommended food during this stage is mother’s milk or formula food. As your baby’s digestive tract is still developing, solid food is a strict no-no. Also, avoid feeding your child on cow’s milk before 12 months.

How Much To Feed
During this stage, your baby needs to be nursed more frequently if put on breast feeding. Since breast milk digests easier than formula milk, your baby is likely to get hungry faster. A one month old baby needs to be breastfed for seven to nine times a day. As they grow old, the newborn need to be nursed less frequently. While some babies may wail for food after every one hour, others may go for a 2 to 3 hours gap between each feeding.

From 4 - 6 Months
This is the stage when your child shows signs of development. Apart from significant changes in relation to growth and other vital changes, your child will show a considerable rise in his appetite too.

What To Feed
During this stage, you can introduce your child to semi-liquid, iron fortified food, such as rice cereal or other grains cereal like oats or barley, apart from feeding him on breast milk or formula food.

How Much To Feed
You can start with giving your child 1 tsp of dry rice cereal mixed with 4 to 5 tsp of breast milk or formula food. Keep the consistency light in the beginning and gradually thicken it, as the baby grows used to it. You can also increase the feeding duration to two once your child grows fond of the food. In case your child refuses to take in the cereal at first attempt, try again after a few days.

From 6 - 8 Months
This is the ideal stage to introduce your child to solid food. You can continue to breast feed or formula feed your child. However at this stage, you can add other food supplements like fruits and vegetables to his diet.

What To Feed
You can introduce your child to pureed or strained fruits and vegetables like banana, peaches, pears, carrot, potato, avocado, squash etc.

How Much To Feed
You can increase the quantity of cereals to 3 to 9 tbsp in 2-3 feedings, during this stage. For fruits and vegetables, you can start with one tsp fruit and slowly increase it to ¼ to ½ cup in 2-3 feedings. Also, while introducing new foods to your baby, make sure to start with a single variety and wait for three days to ensure that your child is not allergic to that particular variety of food.

From 8-10 Months
At this age, a child shows appetite for solid food and other finger foods. You can continue to breast feed your child along with feeding him on other essential food items.

What To Feed
You can start with small amounts of soft pasteurized cheese, yogurt, cottage cheese, cereals like rice, barley, wheat, oats, mixed cereals, mashed fruits and vegetables, finger foods like small pieces of ripe banana, well-cooked spiral pasta, crackers, small amounts of protein like egg, pureed meats, poultry, and boneless fish, mashed beans with soft skins, such as lentils, split peas, black beans and non-citrus juices like apple or pear.

How Much To Feed
Start out by feeding your child with ¼ to 1/3 cup dairy. For cereals you can opt for ¼ to ½ cup iron-fortified cereal daily. The fruits and vegetables should be kept to an amount of ¼ to ½ cup every day. You can give 3 to 4 tbsp of juice to your child.

From 10-12 Months
This is the time by which your child’s teeth appear and he can swallow food more easily.

What To Feed
During this time you can introduce bite-sized, soft-cooked vegetables, such as peas and carrots to his diet. You can also introduce him to tastier combo meals like macaroni and cheese.

How Much To Feed
You can increase the quantity by ¼ to ½ cup combo foods, ¼ to ½ cup iron-fortified cereal, ¼ to ½ cup fruit and ¼ to ½ cup protein foods.