Ask the SMA Careline® for support on feeding your baby

Call free of charge, 8am to 6pm,
Monday to Friday:
0800 0 81 81 80 (UK)
1800 931 832 (Ireland)

Ask the SMA Careline® for support on feeding your baby

Call free of charge, 8am to 6pm,
Monday to Friday:
0800 0 81 81 80 (UK)
1800 931 832 (Ireland)

Feeding guide for babies

Feeding guide for babies

When it’s time for your baby to move on to solids, meals made up of a variety of healthy foods will help them enjoy a healthy appetite and get used to different tastes. A balanced diet will provide the vitamins and minerals your baby needs to grow. Once weaning is underway, they can eat some of the same foods as you, just follow a few simple guidelines:

  • Limit fibre – Babies need lots of calories for growth but have small stomachs. Fibre is bulky and will fill them up leaving less room for more nutritionally-rich food.
  • Don't add salt or sugar – Avoid salty foods like stock and gravy, then remember to separate your baby’s food before adding sugar or salt.
  • Offer a range of different food – This will help them get the nutrients they need and may avoid them being a fussy eater later on.
  • Fat is important – Fat is an important source of nutrients such as energy and vitamin A so always give your baby full fat dairy products.
  • Allergies and Intolerances - Introduce allergenic foods one at a time to spot any allergies and speak to your health care professional if you have any family history of allergy.

What is a balanced diet for babies and toddlers?

What is a balanced diet?

Your baby’s weaning diet should include the four major food groups – fruits and vegetables, bread and starchy foods, dairy, and meat and proteins. Here are some of the key nutrients and how they support your baby’s growth and development:

  • Protein – Helps form the building blocks for cells, muscles, bone, brain and more. Good sources include; meat, fish, eggs and dairy products, pulses, nuts, seeds and fruits.
  • Vitamin D – Helps the body absorb calcium to keep bones healthy, supporting your baby’s rapid growth, co-ordination and development. Good sources include; eggs, oily fish (such as salmon and sardines) fortified milk and vitamin supplements.
  • Vitamin A – Good sources include: dairy products, fruits, and orange or dark green vegetables such as carrots and broccoli.
  • Vitamin C – Essential for your baby’s general health and immune system. It also helps their body absorb iron, so try to include it at every meal. Good sources include; citrus fruit, kiwi fruit and strawberries, broccoli, tomatoes and peppers.
  • Iron – Helps to carry oxygen around your baby’s body, keeping them healthy and their brain active. Good sources include; read meat and fish, egg yolk, beans and lentils, fortified breakfast cereals, fortified milk, and leafy, dark-green vegetables.
  • Omega 3 and 6 LCPs – These fatty acids are important for the healthy development of your baby’s brain, eye and nervous system. Good sources include: oily fish and fortified milk.

SMA® PRO Follow-on Milk is a good choice as it complements the weaning diet.

What is a balanced diet? What is a balanced diet?
Foods to avoid

Foods to avoid for baby

Foods to avoid
  • Cows’ milk can be added to food but should not be given to your baby as a drink for their first 12 months.
  • Whole nuts are a choking hazard so should be avoided under the age of five.
  • Honey may contain bacteria that can lead to infant botulism, as well as being a sugar, so avoid until your baby’s first birthday.
  • Pâté, raw shellfish and mould-ripened or unpasteurised cheeses carry a small risk of food poisoning so are not suitable under the age of two.
  • Unprocessed bran prevents other nutrients being absorbed, so avoid until your child is five years old.
  • Shark, swordfish and marlin contain high levels of mercury that can affect your baby’s nervous system.