Starting Solids With Twins
I remember being very confused when starting solids, not to mention I was a first time mom starting solids with twins. Besides the requirement to feed solids to two babies, I really struggled with determining how much food I was supposed to feed them. It was fairly easy to find information on determining if your baby is ready to start solids. But, figuring out how much solid food a baby should eat was a challenge. So, in this post I will cover the amount of solids to feed your babies, how to start solids, and the perks, yes PERKS, to feeding solids to twins.
Important Tips For Starting Solids
Before I get into the logistics of starting solids with twins, it’s important to know some general tips on feeding solids. Having now been through the process of starting solids with three kids, I understand why there is not much information on the amount of solids to feed when you start. This is because every baby is different.
The best piece of advice I can provide is to feed your baby until she shows signs of being full. Sometimes a feeding could be two spoonfuls and other times it could more than the entire serving you planned to offer. How do you know if your baby is full? The two biggest signs are your baby eating more slowly and your baby turning her head away from the spoon.
The Amount Of Solids To Start With
Even though each feeding might vary, it’s still nice to have a general starting point for a feeding. In my experience, in the first month, start with the following amounts. You can increase or decrease as necessary.
- Baby cereal: follow package directions for 1 serving – split this amount between your twins
- Baby food container: half container of stage 1 baby food – split this amount between your twins
After one month, you will have the experience to know how much your babies need. As your babies get older, the amount of solids they eat will increase.
What Food Should You Start With?
It’s up to you what to start with for the very first solids feeding. I found it easy to start with baby cereal because you can mix it with breast milk or formula. For the first feeding, make the cereal very, very watery. You will add a lot more liquid than on the package directions. If your baby won’t accept the cereal, try adding even more breast milk or formula.
Another good option is to start with a bland vegetable, like sweet potatoes.
Should Twins Start Solids At The Same Time?
How do you know when to start solids? The typical recommendation is to start solids between 4-6 months old. With my three babies, we waited until 5-6 months to start, depending on readiness signs. So, this begs the question do you need to start solids with twins at the same time? From personal experience, the answer is no. J, had been showing signs of readiness from about 5 months of age. Meanwhile, S was not showing these signs.
My advice is to start solids when each twin is ready. You are probably wondering what this means for keeping twins on the same schedule. We only left a few weeks difference between starting solids. So, keep this in mind. Having your twins on the same schedule will be tough if one twin starts solids at 4 months and the other starts at 6 months. In our family’s case, I think S could have happily gone longer than 6 months before starting solids. However, to keep the twins on a similar schedule we started S around 6 months of age, which was within a few weeks of J starting solids. This worked out just fine schedule wise.
How To Monitor For Allergies
It is important to mention that when starting solids you should wait 2-3 days between introducing a new food. If you plan to buy baby food, make sure you you don’t buy too many different types of food at first. The best strategy is to buy 2-3 containers of about 3 different fruits or veggies to get started.
Starting Solids With Twins
I was pleasantly surprised to find out that unlike breastfeeding or bottle feeding twins, there are actually a lot of perks to starting solids with twins versus starting solids with one baby. Check out the list of advantages here.
- Less likely to waste food – If one of the babies doesn’t like the food you are offering, maybe the other one will. This almost always worked out for us. Some days your baby just doesn’t want to eat as much. With twins, you have another baby you can offer the food to instead of it going to waste.
- Same amount of dishes – Twins share everything! This can include spoons and dishes when they are babies. I found it to be much more efficient to use one bowl and one spoon when feeding baby food to twins. If one of the twins was sick, I would use separate bowls and spoons (always to no avail), but psychologically I felt like I was trying to keep my family as healthy as possible.
- Using the whole container of baby food – During the first few months on solids my babies did not eat an entire container of baby food. Once it’s opened it only lasts 1-2 days. It’s nice to not have to keep track of how long a container has been opened.
- Twins watch each other – This is especially helpful if twins are your first children. They watch their sibling and they are more likely to try food if they see their brother or sister eating it. They also might figure out how to pick up pieces of food more quickly by watching their sibling do it.
One Disadvantage To Feeding Solids To Twins
- Keeping Up – Feeding two babies is a lot of work! One of the twins, was very impatient when she was hungry and would cry when she ran out of food. Plus, she’s a very fast eater. It was tough to cut fruits and veggies to keep up with two babies. As a comparison, our singleton cries for food, but it’s much easier to attend to him because I can focus solely on preparing his food.
I hope this information helps you understand a little bit better about what to expect when starting solids with twins. If you’re looking for more tips check out our post on the top 5 tips for starting solids.
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