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Breastfeeding Moms May Give Babies a Taste for Food

Looking for The Lactivist? She's retired. But you CAN still find Jen blogging. These days, she's runs A Flexible Life. Join her for life, recipes, projects and the occasional rant.

Monday, November 28, 2005

A new study builds on past research that shows the foods eaten by mothers during pregnancy and while nursing can have a powerful impact on what foods children will eat as they get older. The theory is that the taste of some foods can be passed to the baby via amniotic fluid and while breastfeeding and that babies then learn to eat a more broad range of foods.

From the Independent Online:

She told a nutrition conference in Barcelona that research around the world had demonstrated the transmission of flavours through amniotic fluid in the womb and breast milk. One French study had shown the children of mothers exposed to anise-flavoured drinks while breastfeeding were less likely to be put off by the taste of aniseed than other babies. Similar research in Ireland found the same kind of results using garlic.
This is an interesting study and something that I think a lot of moms would say they've seen anecdotally. Any mom that has breastfed has run into at least a couple of foods that their little ones either don't like, or can't tolerate. (Pizza from a certain Columbus chain being my downfall...three days of screaming fits before I realized I should stop eating leftovers...) Also, I've known many moms that breastfed whose babies never would warm up to any type of infant cereal. (too bland) My Nora started with avacado and banana instead. Even today, she won't eat anything that isn't "flavorful." Spices, herbs, rich foods, etc...whateve rI eat, she eats.

Another benefit of breastfeeding I guess. Give them broccoli and brussle sprouts now and avoid some dinner battles later? ;)