Sunday, January 16, 2011

EGG-celent first food

Sweet pea's first food was avocado. Sweetheart's first food was rice cereal. Thank goodness, he didn't like it! I've been doing some research on what babies can eat when, and what the perfect first food should be.

Most pediatricians and childcare books offer the same advice about a baby's first solid meal -- start them first on rice cereal mixed with breast milk or formula. This has been received wisdom for 60 years.

WHY? Because, in the 1950's, baby food companies launched an advertising campaign (falsely) boasting the benefits of white rice cereal. There is no scientific research that backs these claims. None at all. And now, concerned about increasing childhood obesity, some pediatricians want to change how babies eat.

If babies are getting used to the taste of highly processed white rice and flour, it may set them up for a lifetime of bad habits.

USA Today reports:

"White rice -- after processing strips away fiber, vitamins and other nutrients -- is a 'nutritional disaster' ... White rice and flour turn to sugar in the body 'almost instantly,' ... raising blood sugar and insulin levels."

White rice is a refined carbohydrate, a group of highly processed, nutritionally devoid foods that have been linked to increased rates of heart disease, insulin resistance, eye damage and cancer in adults, and are worthless nutritionally for infants as well.

So enough about that. What SHOULD we be feeding our babies? EXTREMELY SOFT BOILED EGG YOLKS. Yes, I know lot's of kids are developing allergies to eggs. But did you know that it is the egg WHITE that they are allergic to?

According to the Weston A. Price Foundation, egg yolk should be your baby's first solid food, starting as early as 4 months, whether your baby is breastfed or formula-fed. Egg yolks from free-range hens will contain the long-chain fatty acids so critical for the optimal development of your child's brain and nervous system.

So this is what I did:

Boiled an egg for 4 minutes. Removed the shell and egg white. The yolk should be soft and warm, not hot, with its enzyme content intact. Sprinkled with a small amount of natural Himalayan salt and fed to Sweetheart with a spoon....and he actually liked it! I did it for him again this morning and tasted it myself and started gagging. I guess if you're used to scrambled, you have to get used to the almost raw kind.

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