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Baby-led Weaning: Helping Your Baby to Love Good Food [Paperback]

Gill Rapley , Tracey Murkett
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (250 customer reviews)
RRP: 10.99
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Book Description

6 Nov 2008

Contrary to popular belief, there is no research that supports the current mainstream view that babies should be weaned by being spoon-fed purées. Self-feeding allows babies to use their natural abilities to explore taste, texture, colour and smell. It encourages independence and confidence by allowing them to experiment with foods at their own pace and helps to develop hand-eye coordination and chewing.

Baby-led Weaning is a practical and authoritative guide to introducing solid food, enabling your child to grow up a happy and confident eater. It shows parents why baby-led weaning makes sense and gives them the confidence to trust their baby's natural skills and instincts.

With practical tips for getting started and the low-down on what to expect, Baby-led Weaning explodes the myth that babies need to be spoon-fed and shows why self-feeding from the start is the healthiest way for your child to develop. Your baby is allowed to decide how much he wants to eat, how to eat it and to experiment with everything at his own pace.

Baby-led weaning is a common-sense, safe, easy and enjoyable approach to feeding your baby. No more purées and weaning spoons, and no more mealtime battles. Simply let your baby feed himself healthy family food.

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Frequently Bought Together

Baby-led Weaning: Helping Your Baby to Love Good Food + The Baby-led Weaning Cookbook: Over 130 delicious recipes for the whole family to enjoy + River Cottage Baby and Toddler Cookbook
Price For All Three: 25.07

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Product details

  • Paperback: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Vermilion (6 Nov 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0091923808
  • ISBN-13: 978-0091923808
  • Product Dimensions: 2 x 13.6 x 21 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (250 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 376 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description


"It sounds like common sense: after all, would you want to be strapped into a high chair and force-fed spoon after spoon of bland vegetables? It's surely much more exciting to be able to exercise a bit of control over your diet" (Guardian)

"could radically simplify infant feeding" (Daily Telegraph)

"[Baby-led weaning] makes life so much easier" (The Times)

"I see many happy children, who choose their own food independently and eat at their own pace" (Stefan Kleintjes, paediatric dietitian)

"the benefits are great" (Independent)

Book Description

Everything you need to know about baby-led weaning - the latest buzz in parenting circles - from leading health visitor Gill Rapley

Inside This Book (Learn More)
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
587 of 596 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Refreshing Alternative but Blinkered 19 Jan 2010
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This book offers a refreshing alternative to traditional weaning in "stages" with purees then lumps etc. Especially now the official advice is not to wean before 6 months, it is possible to introduce your baby to a range of solids from the start with all the associated benefits.
However, the book is very critical of other approaches and in my opinion tries to oversell the idea. Many traditionally weaned babies are not force fed spoonfuls of pureed vegetables and are offered plenty of finger foods. It also oversells the practicalities of your baby eating the same meals as the rest of the family. Avoiding too much salt means mostly cooking from scratch and so freshly cooking 2-3 meals a day for the family as well as for the baby is no small task and limits the choices for family meals. In addition, sensible times for the baby to eat are often not so sensible for the rest of the family - for example if the baby goes to bed at 7pm and dad gets home from work at 6:30, finding a slot to eat together isn't so easy.
In addition, the book repeats often how safe it is and how it is rare for a baby to choke if they can get food into their mouth themselves and is sitting up properly. However, there doesn't seem to be any scientific research to back up this theory, the book is based on a very small study.
Having said that, we have used many of the ideas from the book and have taken a kind of hybrid approach. We started on mostly soft finger foods rather than purees, such as roast sweet potato, well boiled veg and soft fruits. We eat together when we can and the Sunday roast is a great meal we have shared from very early on in weaning. When she has food that is best from a spoon, we preload the spoon and let her hold it - either on her own or with some support.
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19 of 20 people found the following review helpful
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This book does spend a lot of time telling you how other types of baby feeding are not good. I bought this hoping to learn how I could introduce BLW alongside purees but was very disappointed with the book. If you are of the mindset that BLW is the only way and all other ways are bad then this is for you. If not then you might as well save you money and just research on the Internet.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Can't Stand This Book 18 Feb 2014
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I have read a few baby-related books since having my first child but although most share its "I know best" tone, this is the first one I actually wanted to throw across the room. So smug and irritating, I couldn't bear it! And do you need an entire book to tell you to try to give your baby something more interesting than purees? NO. Look up info online, there's plenty you can find without needing to spend money on this book.
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36 of 41 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Baby Led Warning 12 Nov 2011
I came to baby-led weaning with an open mind. I started enthusiastically, reading information given by local health visitors and also talking to other mums who have taken this approach to weaning. At their recommendation I brought this book. Here's the review:

Some of the claims cited in the book have no substantial scientific research that is published in peer-reviewed journals to justify their inclusion in the authors attempt to persuade parents to use the baby-led approach. I say this as a scientist and a doctor with a PhD. It is stated that 'research' indicates that babies are no more likely to choke when feeding themselves than when they are fed by someone else, yet the authors do not cite the research from which they make this statement. Referencing this would be useful not only to support the authors claims, but in the light of the choking hazard being of real concern to parents when discussing the baby-led approach. If babies are less likely to choke when feeding themselves from the start of weaning, I would ask the authors why, then, am I aware of babies choking when following a baby-led programme? This is not a misinterpretation of the gag-reflex either.

The authors also claim that the baby-led baby is a better eater and less fussy as a toddler. The authors disregard the influence of culture, media, peer-groups and parental eating habits in order to make such generalisations. Again, why do we all know of children who are extremely fussy eaters regardless of how they have been weaned? One baby-led toddler I am aware of, for example, is now only willing to eat malted milk biscuits and drink hot chocolate, others refuse to eat from a spoon and they are now at school - baby-led gone a step too far perhaps?
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88 of 102 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic - a life saver!!!! 6 Nov 2008
This book is a MUST for anyone with a baby who refuses to spoon feed or wants to allow their baby to set the pace for weaning!

I have a 6 month old baby who refuses to spoon feed but will feed himself wih finger food, however grandparents and health visitors have frowned upon this and criticised me for doing it. This book explains the benefit of allowing a baby to lead the weaning process and empowers you to do things your way! I now have answers to people who criticise this way of feeding and now have mealtimes that are much less stressful.

This book answers all the questions I had about baby led weaning but don't expect recipes - you are encouraged to get baby eating the same meal as the family!

Having read this book I no longer feel like a failure for not having a baby who spoon feeds, although the freezer full of purees that I made can be used as a dip with pitta bread!! I am going to pass the book on to my mother in law to read as she can't get her head around not knowing exactly what is being eaten. I have every confidence that the book will win her round - it explains everything so well!!

Best money I have spent on baby books - Annabel Carmel will only come out for finger food recipes!!!!
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Definitely worth considering
Gave this item as a gift to a friend but I understand they have really liked it.
Published 4 days ago by CKC
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant!
Excellent book so interesting I was hooked after the guest few pages! I wish I'd read it years ago before starting traditional weaning!
Published 19 days ago by V2013
5.0 out of 5 stars great book
great book, great practice. my baby is doing fantastically doing baby led weaning and I cant recommend this book enough as it fully prepares you for the process and gives good... Read more
Published 23 days ago by miss sally e harris
5.0 out of 5 stars !!!
This is the book for stress free parents! The baby does the job and it really works! Worth to buy!
Published 29 days ago by Filippo
4.0 out of 5 stars Can't wait for the mess :)
I felt that I did weaning totally wrong with my first born - I listened to advice about one food at a time - pureed etc. Read more
Published 1 month ago by Ms. R. J. Parkes
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent book
This book is very good and really makes sense. It is well laid out, split by age groups. If you are struggling with spoon feeding this book is for you
Published 1 month ago by Tamster
4.0 out of 5 stars Helped me wean my baby
My baby has been weaned using the baby led method. I found this book helpful as it gave me confidence that baby led was right for us and it gave helpful hints for food. Read more
Published 1 month ago by MISS KJ HOLLAND
3.0 out of 5 stars Good but a lot of waffle!
Had most of the information I needed but relentlessly waffled on & reiterated topics in an effort to seemingly fill the book out.
Published 1 month ago by Miss KJA Speirs
5.0 out of 5 stars Buy it
Best baby book I ever bought. Don't waste your time pureeing. This book will answer all your questions and concerns
Published 1 month ago by Rachel Gutteridge
3.0 out of 5 stars Great if you're confident in how you want to feed your child
I bought this book following the recommendation of a friend who is a huge Baby-led Weaning advocate - she loved this book. Read more
Published 2 months ago by A Scot
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