Baby food is for babies? Not exclusively. Hollywood A-listers are eating baby food now. The Baby Food Diet, made famous by Tracy Anderson, is for those who want to control their food portions and curb cravings with pureed fruits and veggies. The diet works for celebrities, but for those who would rather not revert back to their infant days it isn’t an ideal diet.
I asked our resident dietitian Mary Hartley, RD if the serving size of a baby’s jar would satisfy grown adults? She tells us, “No. A little four-ounce jar of pureed baby food ranges from 40 to 80 calories, and so an adult would need many, many little jars if the diet consisted only of baby food.”
The jars of baby food might make reasonable replacements for snacks during the day, but frankly, just eating the whole fresh fruit or vegetable is going to be far more satisfying, as many if not less calories, and none of the preservatives or other additives common to jarred baby food. (more…)
The Baby Food Diet has taken Hollywood by storm but as more Americans who want to lose weight are jumping on the jarred, pureed food bandwagon, nutrition experts and parents are questioning whether the diet is safe and effective.
“Meeting adequate nutritional needs while following a diet that promotes eating small portions of low calorie pureed foods isn’t so easy,” said Toby Amidor, MS, RD, CDN, nutrition expert for FoodNetwork.com and mother of three. “Jars of baby food vary from 15 to 100 calories so it can really be up to the dieter to mix and match various food groups to meet dietary needs.”
While eating baby food alone can put a person at risk for certain vitamin and nutritional deficiencies, there are variations to the diet that can make it healthier, more accessible and more sustainable.
In 2001, the World Health Organization that mothers exclusively breastfeed their babies until six months, but now some scientists are worried that this practice may be harmful. An article published in the British Medical Journal presented evidence that failing to introduce any solid food before six months may increase a baby’s rick for iron deficiency, anemia and celiac disease.
However, Mary Fewtrell of the University College London Institute of Child Health says few mothers are able to follow the WHO guidelines, which were also recommended by the UK’s government starting in 2003. Fewtrell said that most mothers find that their babies want more food than they can provide before six months, and that few mothers feed their children exclusively breast milk before the age of six months. “About 1% were doing it in 2005, although probably more now,” she said. “But only about 20% breastfeed at all at six months. It is not a common behavior.”
A heart-breaking new statistic that all parents should be concerned with has just been released by MSNBC.com: nearly one third of all U.S. babies are too fat.
The long term study was comprised of more than 7,500 infants from across the country who were all born in 2001. By the time the infants were nine-months old, 32 percent were considered overweight or even obese when compared to the standard growth charts developed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. When the children were two-years old, the percentage had increased to 34 percent.
Luckily, just because your baby is a little chunky now does not mean he/she will be an obese adult – if you start making changes now.
Doctors and scientists have long known that formula fed babies gain weight faster, and are heavier, than breast fed babies. It’s been surmised that the differing growth rate has to do with the composition of the formula, which is cow based. Recent studies support this idea.
Researchers know that free amino acids and proteins increase satiety in adults. They wanted to see if infants had the same result. Headed by Julie Mennella, PhD, researchers at the Monell Chemical Senses Center in Philadelphia randomized 64 healthy term infants whose mothers had already chosen formula over breast feeding. The babies received either cow’s-milk formula (Enfamil) or protein hydrolysate formula (Nutramigen) from ages 2 weeks to 7.5 months. By the end of the study, those infants who received the Nutramigen had weight-for-length and weight-for-age scores closer to normal than those infants who received the Enfamil, or an average of two pounds. One of the reasons for the faster weight gain may be the comparatively higher consumption of the cow’s-milk formula despite both formulas containing the same number of calories per ounce, as reported in the journal Pediatrics.
Before my daughter was born I decided to make my own baby food. Several friends had done so and raved about the cost savings, ease and enjoyment. That, coupled with my plans being justified after reading My Two-Year-Old Eats Octopus, inspired me to put a new blender and food processor on my registry. The gift was fulfilled and last month I put it to use for the first time, as my now five-month-old daughter was ready for solids. Solids in the form of pureed, liquified vegetables.
I’m certainly not on a high horse about it, as I’ve unfortunately been accused. Instead, I’m sharing my experience with it because I’m shocked at how easy, affordable and fun it is. Plus, it’s a really healthy option to feed my daughter and expose her as young as possible to fresh foods (and my love of cooking!). Processed, jarred baby foods can mask the true flavor, smell and color of fruits and vegetables. Plus, the pre-made baby foods at the store come in a limited variety and cost, in some cases, more than a dollar a jar (or, a dollar per feeding). I haven’t found zucchini or pumpkin at the store, but my daughter has enjoyed both of those varieties at home.
Watch the video below as I describe my first batch of zucchini, carrots and squash. It’s a six-week supply of food that I paid $7.50 for, and spent two hours preparing. (more…)
UPDATE: If you’re still having trouble contacting Similac, join the rest of us. Luckily, we’ve tracked down the following lot numbers that seem to be on the recall list: 66128RB6, 61251 RB6,
61347RB, 84314 RB, 85454 T2, 86580 T20, 88137T20, 90372T20, 87932T20, 88136T20, 91433t20
Wednesday, September 22nd, 2010 Abbott Laboratories, Inc. has issued a voluntary recall of nearly 5 million Similac products. Have you been affected by this recall? For most of us, there’s still no way of knowing for sure. Similac has setup a website and a phone number (800-986-8850) dedicated to helping consumers find out if their product has been recalled.
That’s a great place to start, right? Unfortunately, their communication lines haven’t been able to hold up to the increasing number of concerned parents; the website is down and the phone line has been busy since three o’clock yesterday afternoon. In my opinion, if Similac wants to keep parents loyal, then perhaps they should keep us more informed. Instead of publishing a list of recalled lot numbers, they’ve provided elusive tools where parents can go and enter their lot numbers into a database. That idea could have worked, but it didn’t and I can’t help but think that someone should have anticipated that.
Have you fed your baby fish today? It’s probably something that many parents don’t really think of much. But if a food science professor has her way, more people will be doing it.
Incorporating fish into an adult’s diet is recommended for several reasons, one of which is those rich in omega-3 fatty acids help prevent coronary artery disease. Experts generally recommend it twice a week.
But why would a baby need fish? Well, there are many other benefits as well. Registered dietitian Susan Brewer of the University of Illinois says that there are two main reasons that we should all feed out baby’s fish: (more…)
The more I learn about what is involved with our food supply, the more I want to make an effort to buy locally grown foods…
BPA, or bisphenol A, is a chemical inside some plastics and most canned foods you eat. What’s the problem with that? The chemical can slowly leach into water or food over time, which creates potential health problems like cancer, disruption to thyroid function, and obesity.
“It’s particularly concerning when it’s lining infant formula cans,” said Shanna Swan, a professor and researcher at the University of Rochester in New York.
BPA is used to keep food fresher longer and prevents it from interacting with metal and altering the taste.
Last month, we told you about nutritionists’ concerns over chocolate-flavored baby food. Mead Johnson Nutrition Co. introduced the flavored beverages for toddlers who are transitioning from infant formula or breast milk. The chocolate and vanilla formulas are milk-based, but contain 19 grams of sugar per seven-ounce serving.
The uproar over the sugar content and some allegedly unproven health claims has not fallen on deaf ears.