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Eating Independence

Vastly improved motor skills are a major milestone for your child at 9 months old. Children at this age may be able to transfer objects from one hand to another and pick up small pieces of food already.

3 mins
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By Danial Ahmad , Author
Oct 19, 2015

Vastly improved motor skills are a major milestone for your child at 9 months old. Children at this age may be able to transfer objects from one hand to another and pick up small pieces of food already. As your child learns to grip larger objects with increased dexterity, they may make an attempt at eating baby food with their own spoon, just like you. You can try encouraging independent eating.

This is a little different from your child picking up small pieces of bite sized food. Using a utensil requires different skills. As your child attempts to eat independently, you should encourage him by providing him his own spoon. It will help him associate the spoon with eating, and get him used to holding a utensil. It will also encourage better motor skills. For the first try, guide your child’s hand (and the spoon) slowly to his mouth. Get him used to the movement. Have a second spoon in hand as they may not be able to guide the spoon properly to his mouth. This way, you can feed your child when he is not eating enough, while providing an example of independent eating for them to imitate.

While the bulk of your child’s diet will still be milk based (breast milk is recommended), your child will be able to take in more solid baby food such as infant cereals paired with beans, honeydews, cooked eggs, carrot, potato, rice and even peeled and de-seeded tomatoes. This will provide balanced nutrition that includes vitamins, proteins, and carbohydrates needed by your child. Infant cereals are a great way to introduce solid food; when in a bowl, they can be used to encourage your child to use a spoon. Do avoid sweets and cookies as they are empty calories without much nutrition.

To ensure that big nutrition is absorbed by your child’s small tummies, you can try CERELAC® Infant Cereals which is specially formulated using CHE (Cereals Hydrolysed Enzymatically) technology. This ensures that carbohydrates such as rice or wheat are broken down to smaller components for ease of digestion.

When planning for new baby foods, remember to check with your paediatrician occasionally if your child shows any unusual symptoms. We wish you and your child the best as you continue to learn about each other in this time of growth!

Supplement your child’s favourite infant cereal with diced fruits, vegetables and meat for complete nutrition in every meal. Learn about preparing the perfect meal for your little one with our recipes from the Recipe Section.

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