It might be time to put down the cutlery and let kids get messy as research suggests spoon-fed babies are more likely to overeat
Babies who are spoon-fed during weaning are more likely to be overweight as toddlers, while babies allowed to feed themselves are less likely to overeat, suggests research from Swansea University. What’s more, if your spooning up your tot’s meals, he’ll probably be a fussier eater, too.
The study looked at 298 babies in the weaning phase who were introduced to solid foods between six and 12 months. Researchers found that babies who were weaned using a baby-led approach, where they were allowed to pick food at their own plates, were significantly more able to stop eating when they felt full. But babies who were spoon fed were eating more and fussier as they got older.
Scientists reckon spoon-fed babies are less able to tell when they’ve had enough to eat because parents are guiding their appetite, and in some cases, pressurising them into eating more puréed food than they need.
Spoon feeding Vs the baby-led approach? Well, whether you’re feeding him or letting him eat by himself, there are benefits to both during weaning. For most mums, a mixt of both techniques works best. Find out the best approach for you.
What feeding style worked for your baby? Leave your comments below.