Throughout history and in most cultures women never thought to stop nursing their babies until they are both emotionally and physiologically ready. It was natural (and still is) for a child to be nursed at least two or three years—until all their teeth have developed.
Until the advent of modern technology (bottles, blenders, baby food grinders, etc.) babies before about the age of two or so were fed only mother’s milk. No other food was necessary nor was it available. Baby was unable to chew foods without teeth and mother had not the tools to make the food pureed.
In recent years doctors have advised mothers to feed solid foods to their babies younger and younger. They have told these mothers that their milk is inadequate and babies will have nutritional deficiencies if they don’t stop nursing immediately and start feeding abominations as pureed meats and vegetables (cooked); cooked, enriched cereals; cooked, pureed fruits; etc. Mothers followed this advice and ended up with insecure, overweight, dyspeptic, and sickly babies.
But now, amongst more educated women, the trend is going back toward the natural way of raising our children. Women nurse their children for longer periods and wait until the physiological signs (teeth) and emotional signs (willingness to give up the breast) occur before totally weaning their babies.
In the last lesson I covered feeding baby as well as nursing before actual weaning. Now I will discuss totally weaning the baby from the breast, how to do it, why to do it, as well as feeding a child once it is totally weaned.