Quick Guide to Infant Feeding Methods

Complementary Feeding Quick References for HCPs

Quick summary

Review tips for educating caregivers about complementary feeding for infants.

Tips to Guide Parents & Caregivers

  • Guide caregivers to introduce solids in the way that is appropriate for the individual needs of the family (Komninou 2018).
    • Consider factors such as time, cost, access to food storage/ preparation areas, and cooking skills.
  • Keep in mind: many caregivers may combine methods to implement what works best for them and their families. Support flexibility.
  • Provide caregivers with access to food safety information and best practices to help prevent choking, for all types of feeding methods.
  • Encourage caregivers to practice a responsive feeding approach. Help educate parents on common signs of hunger and fullness.
  • Regardless of method, encourage consumption of a variety of nutrient dense complementary foods as recommended in the 2020-2025 U.S. Dietary Guidelines for Americans.
    • About 6 months old introduce:
      • Iron-rich foods (meats and seafood rich in heme iron, iron-fortified infant cereals)
      • Zinc-rich foods (meats, beans, fortified infant cereals)
      • A variety of foods from all food groups, knowing it may take up to 8-10 exposures for an infant to accept a new food