Understanding hunger and fullness feeding cues

  • Breastmilk or infant formula is still your Supported Sitter's main source of nutrition.
  • Losing interest in breast or bottle during a feeding may mean he’s had enough.
  • Solid food in the diet creates new hunger and fullness cues for your Supported Sitter.
  • Mouth wide open and a focus on the spoon means he’s hungry.
  • Tightly closing his mouth and refusing any more food signals he’s full.

Breastmilk or infant formula will remain your child’s main source of nutrition. But as you introduce Iron-rich infant cereal and baby food to your Supported Sitter, there’s a new set of feeding cues to learn.

Knowing when to feed

Knowing when to feed is an essential part of your baby's health and development. As his eating skills improve, you’ll quickly get the message when he wants to eat. He is learning new skills and letting you know it.

Supported Sitter hunger cues:
  • Still cries or fusses when hungry for milk or desires food.
  • Opens his mouth wide and leans toward spoon once he sees it.
  • May attempt to grab or swipe at spoon.
  • Smiles at you during feeding as if to say, “I’m still hungry, keep it coming.”

Leaning toward the spoon with a grab or swipe
means keep the food coming.

Recognizing when he’s full

Responding when your baby is full by putting down the spoon can help set the stage for good eating habits, letting your baby recognize his own hunger and fullness cues. As a Supported Sitter, he's learning his own internal cues to eat only until satisfied. Most babies can regulate their own feeding, so you should never force them to finish the bowl.

Supported Sitter fullness cues:
  • Stops sucking or slows down his pace and may fall off to sleep while breast- or bottle-feeding.
  • Releases his latch from breast or bottle nipple.
  • Keeps his mouth closed and may even cover mouth with his hands to refuse any more food.
  • Spits out familiar food or turns his head away from it.
  • Gets distracted and gazes around.
How was the information in this article?
Learning how to eat
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Your guide to starting solids
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A day in your Supported Sitter's diet
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