Doctor Betti
Dr. Betti Hertzberg Ressler is a Board Certified Pediatrician on staff at Miami Children's Hospital. Dr. Hertzberg developed the toilet training video "Let's Go Potty." She is the co-author of "The Doctor's Book of Home Remedies for Children."

Eating "Real Food"

Question: My son is 11 months old and I am trying to start him on "real" food rather than jars. The problem is every time I try, he vomits. It seems that he doesn't like the textures. He likes to suck on french fries, but then he will vomit. I tried mashed banana and he vomits, mashed potato also. Any suggestions about how I should go about this! Thanks in advance. - Liz

Answer: As creatures of habit (babies included), anything new or different may cause setbacks or refusal. Food is no exception!

I assume that he was doing well with jar baby food. The texture is smooth and very easy to digest. He may or may not have teeth, which may also play a role in the refusal or "vomiting." The molars (used for grinding food) usually do not appear to well into the 2nd year.

Repeated vomiting such as this may be innocent (he vomits, so he can get the food that he really wants), or there may be a physical reason for his vomiting. This is something that should be discussed with your son's pediatrician.

It would be a good idea to make a diary of everything he eats along with the symptoms that occur. In other words, i.e., eats mashed potato--vomits, eats baby jar of desert-no vomiting. Be specific. Also, note any other symptoms such as bowel habits and any weight loss or gain.

Keep in mind also, your reaction to his vomiting. An 11 month old is smart enough to pick up your responses, and if it will give him attention by getting your attention, he is an accomplished 11 month old.

Before any conclusion is reached, please consult with your son's pediatrician.

Also see:

  • Breastfeeding when baby isn't hungry?
  • Can a pediatrician comfortably prescribe and manage ADHD medication or is it better suited to a psychiatrist?
  • Ask Dr. Betti your questions

    This information is not intended to be a substitute for visiting your pediatrician. If you or your child has specific concerns, you should see your doctor for a diagnosis and treatment.