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Baby Soup

I recently read “French Kids Eat Everything” by Karen Billon and was intrigued by a strategy the French use for developing a baby’s palette: soup. The French strongly believe it is a parent’s responsibility to educate their children about food and part of this is repeatedly exposing them to many flavors at an early age. They start by giving simple soups via bottle to babies between four and six months of age.

The basic recipe is to steam vegetables, then puree them, and mix a small amount with breast milk or formula in a bottle. I’m sure this could also be adapted to a sippy cup if you are not using bottles. Think of it as having “cream of spinach” soup.

I have decided to try this approach with Henry for two main reasons.

  1. It will introduce Henry to new flavors in the familiar liquid form that he is used to. While breast milk takes on the taste of foods the mother has eaten, Henry has only had bottles of formula for over a month. Since our breastfeeding journey ended early, his diet now tastes the same at every bottle feeding. Offering soup to him in a bottle is an easy way to reintroduce flavor variation to his diet. 
  2. Soup by bottle is an early opportunity to begin repeatedly exposing Henry to new tastes so he can start developing his taste buds. Research shows that children need to taste food many times before they can decide if they like it. Parents often assume that a child doesn’t like a food when he spits it out the first or second time he tries it. In fact, he may just need several opportunities to try it out before getting used to a new flavor.
I am going to start Henry with a few ounces of soup per day to experiment with how he responds to new flavors. I'll have a follow-up report in the next post.

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