Weaning your baby off the bottle

Weaning your baby off the bottle

Make the transition smooth to the cup

Lucille Beseler, RDN

Is co-author of Nurturing with Nutrition and a former president of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics representing over 100,000 Nutrition professionals, while also active as a clinical dietitian in South Florida.

Article in collaboration with: Melanie Bazarte, PhD

Getting your baby ready for a cup

By 9 months, your baby should already have been introduced to a cup. Between 10 and 11 months and over a period of 4 to 6 weeks, start weaning by giving your baby one less bottle a day for a week and replacing it with a small amount of formula or water in a training cup, For example:

There is no fast or easy way to remove a bottle from a baby. Some babies are attached to their bottles and need a little more time. Having a goal, a plan, and a starting point will make it easier. For example:

  • Replace the afternoon bottle with a snack, then the morning bottle, and so on. The bottle that is most cherished should be the last to go.
  • Put water in the bottle.
  • Enlarge the hole in the nipple for a few days and then cut the tip off entirely (guard against flooding).
  • Give your baby his milk in a sippy cup––and some time ––and he will enjoy sucking again.
  • Let your toddler pick out her own cup at the store. She can decorate it with stickers if she is old enough.

Adapted from Nurturing with Nutrition by Dr. Melanie Bezarte and Lucille Beseler, RDN

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