Should You Feed Your Baby On Demand?


Parents want to provide the right nutrition to their infant at times that match his/her physical needs, encourages healthy development, and promotes infant contentment.  But establishing a successful method can be difficult when also trying to learn your baby’s cues and create a routine.  Most experts stand behind one of two types of feeding styles – on demand and scheduled. Learning the benefits and drawbacks of both methods can greatly help parents manage their ideological and practical needs.

Demand feeding:   An on-demand approach to feeding simply suggests that parents should watch their baby for hunger cues and respond by feeding when their baby is clearly hungry.  This style of feeding has moved away from a clock-directed method, and instead encourages parents to “watch your baby, not the clock.”

Many parents who choose the on-demand approach to feeding identify these key benefits:

  • Best for breastfed babies.
  • Babies are not left hungry, and can eat when they need to do so.
  • Mothers learn their baby’s signals and develop a trusting relationship between mother and baby.
  • Breastfeeding mothers often find this method less stressful and more natural.

Parent-directed or scheduled feeding:  As the name indicates, this feeding style means the parents determine when their baby should eat based on a variety of factors, such as sleep schedules, hunger cues, and play time.  Once a routine is established, parents rarely deviate, keeping a consistent schedule.

Moms and dads who choose the parent directed method note the following advantages:

  • Scheduled feedings are the foundation for a reliable routine.
  • The on-demand approach can lead parents to assume all cries and fussiness are the result of hunger cues.
  • Overfeeding can cause an array of issues, including fussiness and gassiness.
  • Mothers who feed their baby often and at short intervals can easily become fatigued, whereas scheduled feedings give mothers more rest and consistency.

No one style is best for every mom, dad, or baby. Finding the right method for you will greatly ease any concerns or stress regarding your infant’s nutrition.  As always, you can count on Bambino’s to provide nutritious baby food to for your baby anytime you need it.  You can see all of our amazing frozen baby food options by visiting our website.