Chew on This – Babies Shouldn’t Get Pureed Food says Unicef

Cast your mind back to those nostalgic days of preparing baby’s first real meal…..the love and care you put into cooking a real meal then pureeing it so it’s easily digestible.

Well you did it all wrong according to a BBC report on a new Unicef study. Spoon-feeding babies pureed food is unnatural and unnecessary says Gill Rapley, deputy director of Unicef’s Baby Friendly Initiative. In fact, she says, children should be fed only with breast or formula milk
for six months, then weaned onto solids to improve control over how
much they ate.

After six months, Rapley says babies are capable of taking food into their mouths and chewing it so feeding them pureed food at this time could delay the development of chewing skills.

"Rapley argued that babies fed pureed food had little
control over how much food they ate, thus rendering them vulnerable to
constipation, and running a risk that they would react by becoming
fussy eaters later in life," writes the BBC.
Food for thought, something to chew on? Let the comments flow.

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4 Responses to Chew on This – Babies Shouldn’t Get Pureed Food says Unicef

  1. Denzylle says:

    I know (from experience) that babies can chew on the breast, but that’s not quite the same as masticating food. The current practice of pureeing, then mashing, then just cutting up finger food seems to me to be a sensible way of helping a baby learn how to masticate properly – a toddler needs to know the difference between chewing a cooked carrot and a raw one. It’s also a good way of helping the child learn how to feed himself.

  2. Sharyn says:

    There seems something really natural about mashing up a banana and spooning it into the mouth of a toothless infant. I wonder how much of this study focused on the use of jarred babyfood, with its limited number of flavors and predictably smooth texture? Surely such a limited diet could cause a child to become a fussy eater. It might even result in occassional constipation. I make my child’s purees myself (this morning she had pureed Chilton county peaches and yogurt), and have altered the texture of the purees as she has become a more experienced eater. I hope I’m doing the right thing…

  3. rachel says:

    I need to read that article – But I agree with Sharyn that it must have something to do with jar-pre-made food.
    I know moms that shovel it in. With no care for what the baby is looking like. They also chose formula from birth, so who knows.
    And besides – my guy only did the pureed for a week – if that- he was way too interested in our food. I just gave him minuscule amounts. And steamed the broccoli till it was soft.
    I dunno.
    Interesting.

  4. BC says:

    Hmmm, what about the fact that many children do not have much by way of teeth at 6 months of age? Our children went from breast milk to regular, albeit, pureed or mashed food. There’s nothing like seeing your 9 month old gagging on a bread crust to form a perspective about what might be appropriate.

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