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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic!!!
I bought this book when my 6.5 month old son started flatly refusing any and all purees, I had read a little online and BLW seemed like something worth trying.
This book is a fantastic help, clearly explaining the idea behind BLW and giving helpful info on how to go about it.
we have not looked back and now at just 8 months my little one is happily feeding...
Published on 14 Feb. 2010 by Rachel Graham

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657 of 672 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Refreshing Alternative but Blinkered
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...
Published on 19 Jan. 2010 by UK reviewer


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657 of 672 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Refreshing Alternative but Blinkered, 19 Jan. 2010
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This review is from: Baby-led Weaning: Helping Your Baby to Love Good Food (Paperback)
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. We have never put the spoon into her mouth without her guiding it there so no force feeding. I do batch cook suitable foods for her and freeze them so we can continue to eat seasoned (and convenience) foods and I can feed her when it fits best with her routine and we don't have to wait for our meals around her naps etc.
I love the ideas behind this book but don't like the "all other ways are bad" style of presenting them. All babies are different and this approach, or elements of it, will work for some and not others. My advice, read the book, try what makes sence for you but don't be brainwashed into thinking you have to take the whole package or nothing.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic!!!, 14 Feb. 2010
By 
Rachel Graham (Bristol, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Baby-led Weaning: Helping Your Baby to Love Good Food (Paperback)
I bought this book when my 6.5 month old son started flatly refusing any and all purees, I had read a little online and BLW seemed like something worth trying.
This book is a fantastic help, clearly explaining the idea behind BLW and giving helpful info on how to go about it.
we have not looked back and now at just 8 months my little one is happily feeding himself all sorts of food, including filet steak, all sorts of veg and fruit, chicken fajitas and very occaisionally smoked salmon (small ammounts, v high in salt).
I couldn't have done it without this book, it gave me the confidence to trust my little boy and let him choose what he wants when he wants it, I cannon recommend this book enough, if you want to do BLW this is definately the book for you.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Baby Led Weaning, 7 Dec. 2009
This review is from: Baby-led Weaning: Helping Your Baby to Love Good Food (Paperback)
A friend mentioned this to me and I'm so glad I ordered the book. We are having so much fun with eating. I was not looking forward to making all the meals, pureeing and freezing them, but with baby led weaning we all eat the same things, adapting them only slightly for our wee one. He is really enjoying it as well. It is messy but fun. If you don't get too hung up on how much they're eating at first this is a way to make all meal times really enjoyable. I would definitely recommend reading this book and then you can make up your own mind. The only thing that would have been of benefit was a few more receipes but I believe the author is in the process of publishing such a book.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Would recommend overall, 9 Dec. 2010
By 
Mrs. E. Good (Malvern) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Baby-led Weaning: Helping Your Baby to Love Good Food (Paperback)
We decided to opt for baby led weaning (BLW) after talking to other mums, many of whom had tried baby led weaning themselves and really raved about it. We bought this book, which we have been pleased with overall and would recommend it to others thinking of giving this weaning method a go. However, I would agree with some of the negative points raised by other reviewers. In particular, I would agree that the book is rather long-winded, makes many claims that do not seem to be backed up by evidence (e.g. babies may be less likely to develop eating disorders if they are weaned in this way) and seems rather negative with regards to formula-fed babies.
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17 of 20 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Can't Stand This Book, 18 Feb. 2014
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wiz_frog (London, England) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Baby-led Weaning: Helping Your Baby to Love Good Food (Paperback)
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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97 of 116 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Sensible, caring way to wean baby, 8 Mar. 2009
By 
J. Wilkinson (Hampshire, England) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Baby-led Weaning: Helping Your Baby to Love Good Food (Paperback)
This is the only baby book which I have read that I would whole-heartedly recommend to other mothers, for a number of reasons. Gill Rapley is qualified to give her opinions and has based this book on scientific research. Her written style is very readable. She does not dictate to parents what they 'must do'... this book is written to give parents information that may not be available from their Health Visitor or GP about an alternative method of weaning babies. Making your mind up about whether to follow it is up to you...

But here's why I like her ideas and intend to follow them with my baby. Gill stresses the current recommendation from the World Health Organisation not to start weaning your baby until he/she is 6 months old. Before this they need nothing but breast milk (or formula) whatever you may have heard to the contrary. By the time babies reach 6 months they are usually able to sit unaided and, what's more, are capable of picking up large pieces of food, getting them to their mouths and starting to chew on them. For these reasons it becomes unnecessary to puree or mash the food that baby is being offered.

In my opinion it is much nicer for baby to learn what actual broccoli is like instead of eating a green mush. When you are starting straight into baby being able to try 'normal' food from the family meal (Gill explains which foods are unsuitable due to salt content etc) it means meal times become a social occasion from the very beginning and that baby joins in with you.

Don't be scared that your baby will choke - babies' gag reflex is more easily triggered than that of an adult and that will stop them choking on any large pieces of food. Of course you should always be watching baby while he/she is eating.

It may take quite a few weeks before baby actually swallows and digests much of the food, but this is fine as the main source of nutrition continues to be milk. Babies are able to exercise their natural ability to stop eating when they are full more easily when feeding themselves than when being spoon fed.

This method of feeding removes the 'power struggle' over food between parent and child which can lead to fussy eaters later on. Parents learn not to get stressed by the amounts or types of food that baby eats, just to offer a selection of healthy foods and trust baby to know what he/she needs.

Please buy the book if you are at all interested in these ideas about weaning as Gill Rapley has done a fine job in explaining all about it. Do also take a look at the blog and forum at babyledweaning dot com where hundreds of parents who successfully use this method swap tips and information.
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15 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Our Baby loves Baby Led Weaning..., 28 Dec. 2009
This review is from: Baby-led Weaning: Helping Your Baby to Love Good Food (Paperback)
I found this book by chance whilst ordering food trays as I was preparing to puree my baby's first foods.

Our daughter is just over 6 months and I started weaning her 3 weeks ago after reading the book.

The book is very comprehensive in that it explains the principles behind BLW and the history of the "traditional puree oriented weaning" which enabled us to make an informed decision. BLW is a extremely flexible and can be tailored to the baby's needs.

Our daughter loves eating we started her with vegetables; broccoli, carrots, peppers. It was amazing to see that she was able to feed herself. She looked at the Broccoli picked it up and put it in her mouth, at first the majority of the food she was given appeared to fall out of her mouth to our surprise we found bits of broccoli in her nappy...

Since then, she has eaten, avocado, toast, bread sticks, cheese, kiwi fruit, garlic bread, aubergine, bananas, apples, tomatoes, parsnips, broccoli, carrots, strawberry, pears, pineapple, orange, pizza, pasta with tomato and basil sauce.
All of these and the blender in collecting dust at the back of my cupboard

We are extremely pleased with the progress she has made in these short 3 weeks, her hand eye coordination is amazing, she really enjoys her meal times which she shares with us.

Just be prepared for odd looks and well intentioned advise from parents and others who are not aware of BLW and who worry about your baby not having enough food or chocking, read the book and all this concerns will be erased by the clear explanations within the book.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Great if you're confident in how you want to feed your child, 23 April 2014
By 
A Scot (Edinburgh, Scotland, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Baby-led Weaning: Helping Your Baby to Love Good Food (Paperback)
I bought this book following the recommendation of a friend who is a huge Baby-led Weaning advocate - she loved this book. There is some great information carried in the book, but I personally feel it would be much better if it was a lot shorter and more positive. I find it a little overly critical of other feeding methods, something which generally frustrates me about being a parent - there is more than one right way and being a parent is hard enough without being guilt tripped into following one recommendation over another (especially when only using anecdotal evidence). I would have felt much warmer to the book had it simply focussed on the positives of baby led weaning rather than finding the need to criticize other method. To me they need stronger and thorough evidence to back up their claims before slighting other approaches. As an example, one section is entitled "better nutrition" - This could have been entitled "good nutrition" and simply say something like "some parents food baby-led weaning helped to encourage their child to have a positive relationship with nutritious food as they grew." However, it quotes "anecdotal evidence" which to me is not strong enough - a lot of this evidence doesn't take into account all factors, eg perhaps the parents who chose to use baby-led weaning are more likely to serve nutritious food anyway etc etc. Just like any political campaign, there can be anecdotal evidence to support whichever method you use - whatever way you choose, as long as your baby is happy and healthy, is the right way for you. However, if you can overlook that side of the book, there is some really useful information from chapter 4 onwards to give you the confidence to do baby-led weaning; and some tips of what you can introduce. I also like the section on "Bribes, Rewards & Punishments". Something missed was a tip a friend gave me - "the rule of thumb is to to cut the food into chunks the size of your thumb." This tip was invaluable. After using the tips the book and my friend provided, it was lovely to see my son explore the texture of broccoli, then cucumber etc etc. I would have rated the book a four had it all been in a positive tone, however I still much prefer the River Cottage Baby & Toddler Book (another advocate of baby-led weaning, but also provides options for parents who might prefer another route).
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90 of 108 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic - a life saver!!!!, 6 Nov. 2008
By 
J. Pughe (Hornchurch, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Baby-led Weaning: Helping Your Baby to Love Good Food (Paperback)
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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5.0 out of 5 stars Great for mums who want to enjoy mealtimes, 5 May 2011
By 
Ms. A. R. Mannion (london) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Baby-led Weaning: Helping Your Baby to Love Good Food (Paperback)
We bought this on our Kindle and it reassured me that I was doing the right thing (for my baby and for myself), by not spoon feeding. The only difficulty I have had with babyled weaning, is other people's reactions to it - it is still a revolutionary approach as far as the majority is concerned - however the book has lots of scientific info for you to arm yourself with!

I have some friends who do a combination of baby led and spoon feeding, which seems to work well for mums who feel anxious that the child is not getting enough. My baby girl is now 8 months and I still breastfeed as much as I always did, I don't spoon feed her at all as she TOTALLY refuses! She has grown and developed exceptionally well - has 3 teeth, is tall and has lots of energy - she is crawling and almost walking. These things are not because of babyled weaning - but just go to show that if you choose not to spoon feed, you will not be restricting development and growth. In my entirely unscientific opinion, I believe babyled weaning has helped her development, as food is a wonderful area of discovery for a baby - whose experience of the world is at large limited to hand or mouth sensory explorations - a whole host of which become available to them through food play - with the added delight of taste. She will try everything and enjoys so many foods. she seems to favour vegetables and fruit over meat, which is fine, although she will suck on a piece of chicken or beef from time to time! I cannot tell you the joy of seeing your baby clutching a strawberry for dear life and sucking it until it disintegrates - it's SO satisfying seeing those vitamins going in!

Note on Gagging!
If any of you have concerns that your baby may choke - the answer is simple, just stay at the table with them at all times. It can be slightly disconcerting when a baby has a gagging reaction and there have been one or two occasions when I've panicked - but usually I was at fault - an al dente carrot seemed to be a little ambitious - and I tend to oversteam them now just to be on the safe side these days! My daughter actually seems to gag more on softer foods though - banana, weetabix or mash. I think it's more of a reaction to the feeling, than an actual choke, so try not to panic if this happens, it's a good thing and shows that the baby can bring food back into the mouth if they are having trouble with it.

Overall, the book has lots of information and pro baby led weaning points, which new mums, like myself, need - as after all, we are all concerned that we want to do what is best for our baby, and having a wide source of information is the best way to make the right choice for you and your family.
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Baby-led Weaning: Helping Your Baby to Love Good Food
Baby-led Weaning: Helping Your Baby to Love Good Food by Tracey Murkett (Paperback - 6 Nov. 2008)
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