Will Spoon-Feeding Make my Baby Fat?
If you soak up the media like I do, you might have noticed an alarming headline recently out of the UK: “Spoon-fed babies are ‘more likely to become obese’ because their bodies don’t recognize when they are full.”
To the contrary, there is plenty of research that shows us babies are the supreme regulators of their appetite. Babies are born with an innate ability to self-control their food intake. They are naturally and keenly aware of their hunger and fullness—from the start.
The problem with stating that spoon-feeding causes an infant to become overweight is it’s not the spoon that is problematic.
The hand behind the spoon is the problem.
In a 2012 review article in the Journal of Obesity, authors summarized how parents are key to helping children preserve their natural ability to regulate eating through feeding practices and understanding their child’s temperament. Unfortunately, baby’s natural ability to control eating may be lost due to how they are fed.
To preserve your baby’s natural appetite, tune in to your baby’s hunger and fullness signals, and respond to them—you’ll be less likely to under- or overfeed him or her. If you offer nutritious foods, your baby will be unlikely to look for more than he or she needs. And if you can teach baby to self-feed, and trust your baby to know, intuitively, how much he or she needs to satisfy their appetite, then you and your baby will be on the way to healthy eating and weight, even if you use a spoon.
Playtex has issued a voluntary recall of the Playtex Pacifier Holder Clip, because the product can crack and a small part can break off which poses a choking hazard to small children. No reports of injury have been received. We are taking this action out of an abundance of caution, because the health and safety of the people who use our products is our top priority.
Consumers should immediately take the recalled pacifier holders away from infants and contact Playtex for instructions on how to return the product for a full refund. For questions or instructions on how to return the product for a full refund, please contact Playtex at 1-888-220-2075 from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. ET, Monday through Friday or contact us online.
The recall is being conducted in cooperation with the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) and Health Canada.
For more information, please click here for the CPSC recall notice and click here for the Health Canada recall notice.
Being a parent is hard work, often stressful even in the midst of joy. And if you’re not careful, the pressure and pace can drain you of energy (and patience) when you need it most.
For stay-at-home moms and dads trying to keep it all together, here are tips for conserving your health, energy, and sanity:
• Always eat breakfast. A cup of coffee isn’t a meal. Eat a solid, nutritious breakfast to give you the energy you need to face the day.
• Follow a routine. Don’t reinvent the wheel every morning. Have a regular plan for your days with the family so you don’t stress out trying to think of something new to do. Just don’t chain yourself to the schedule—be flexible when problems and opportunities arise.
• Drink lots of water. You can get dehydrated without realizing it, and suffer from headaches and fatigue as a result. Keep a bottle of water handy and drink from it throughout the day without waiting until you feel really thirsty.
• Get fresh air and exercise. Try to get out of the house for a walk once a day. If the weather is too cold or rainy, at least open a window to get the air circulating in your house and in your body.
• Eat healthy snacks. Don’t run yourself down by starving between meals. Some fruit or a few nuts can help keep you going.
• Connect with people. Get together with some other parents for a playdate. Even a quick session on Facebook can help you feel like an adult again. You need mature conversation to stay centered.
• Take a break. Give yourself permission to let the kids watch a video for a half-hour. You’re not a bad parent for taking time for yourself.
• Get your rest. Have a regular bedtime for yourself, not just your kids. Getting the sleep you need will help you stay healthy and calm
Schools may well teach your children how to add and subtract, but learning the value of money is one lesson that has to come from home. Unless you teach them otherwise, they will continue to think that money grows on trees and that banks just give away cash – until they have to make their own way in the world. While financially indulging your children might feel like kindness at the time, you could be doing them a grave disservice by not teaching them valuable lessons for life. Here are a few ideas on how to teach youngsters the value of money.
1. Children are not born understanding how paid employment and banks work. Explain these things to them simply as soon as they are old enough to understand.
2. Help your children to distinguish between needs and wants.
3. Teach your children the principles of spending and saving money as well as those of making money grow.
4. As soon as they are old enough, give them an allowance of their own to permit them to put principles into practice and learn from their own mistakes.
5. Open an interest-bearing account for your children so that they can watch their money grow.
6. Put aside an allowance for essentials such as clothes to help teach your children how to budget and save for more expensive items.
7. Explain how credit cards and loans work; otherwise your children could grow up thinking that these are “free” money.
For their own good: Inspire kids to apply themselves
Convincing children to apply themselves to tasks like schoolwork and household chores can be frustrating for both of you. Without resorting to bribes or threats, try these simple tips:
• Focus on progress, not perfection. Keep your expectations realistic. If you push your child to be the best quarterback, or demand that your lawn look as if a professional gardener tends to it, the pressure can get in the way of a strong effort. Focus on self-improvement and steady progress.
• Give them a choice. If kids feel they have a choice about what to do and how to do it, they’ll try harder. Point out what talents you think they may have, provide options and opportunities, and be honest about what it would take to excel in any chosen activity.
• Make them feel good. Give lots of praise. They’ll want to do more if they feel good about what they’re doing. But make sure you’re sincere, honest, and specific in your praise. Point out their strengths.
• Use rewards wisely. Sometimes a reward helps children get started in an activity or motivates them to continue when they’re losing interest. But offer rewards only to give them a jump start. After that, replace the reward with verbal encouragement.
• Talk about your own work. When you share your own sense of accomplishment in your work or hobbies, kids may be motivated to work harder so they have their own successes to share with you.
It happened in Missouri, but retailers nation-wide are pulling powered formula off their shelves, and for good reason. A 10-day-old baby died after an exposure to the Cronobacter sakazakii bacteria, which can be found in dried milk and powered formula.
NBC News writes:
The source of the bacteria that caused the infection hasn't been determined, but it can be found in dried milk and powdered formula as well as naturally in the environment and in plants such as wheat and rice.
"Out of an abundance of caution, we are removing the formula from certain stores," SuperValu spokesman Mike Siemienas said Friday. "We will hold these products from sale until we receive additional guidance from regulatory authorities and the manufacturer."
Formula manufacturer Mead Johnson Nutrition Co. said earlier this week that tests showed the batch was negative for the bacteria before it was shipped. A company spokesman did not respond to several requests for additional comment Friday.
The company told investors it plans to retest saved samples from the recalled batch, but the company did not undertake its own recall.
Stores pulling the product from their shelves include Walgreens, Wal-Mart, Safeway, Kroger and Shop 'n Save. While there were no talks of New York stores, there were in neighboring states New Jersey and Pennsylvania.
To get more information about the pulled formulas, click here.
Did you make New Year’s resolutions for yourself? How about some as a family? A new year represents a fresh start, an opportunity to set goals and reset your priorities. Don’t just make New Year’s resolutions for yourself—get your whole family involved. Consider collaborating on these resolutions for the year:
• Eat dinner as a family. Families seem to be busier than ever these days, so making room for consistent togetherness time is even more important. Think about cutting back on meetings (you and your spouse) and extracurricular activities (your kids) so everyone can eat dinner together most nights.
• Build confidence in children’s strengths. Don’t spend all your time pointing out your kids’ mistakes and weaknesses. Children grow up to be successful and self-reliant because they’re sure of their strengths. Give them the confidence to tackle anything.
• Hold regular family meetings. These times should be used to discuss schedules, goals, and even grievances. Family meetings can help everyone in the family reconnect and communicate.
• Make personal resolutions a family affair. If you’ve decided you want to do more charitable work, consider making your personal goal a family goal. Volunteering as a family is a powerful way to build self-esteem and build a sense of community in yourself and your kids.
Head’s up, parents of toddlers and kids! There are car seat recommendation changes in 2014.
Starting in 2014, the new recommendation states that the LATCH system should no longer be used when the child and car seat combined weight is over 65lbs.
This is an amendment to the law instated in 2001 that recommends that all children up to 65lbs remain in car seats/boosters, but that did not take into account the weight of car seats. Car manufacturers cannot guarantee the strength of the anchors when adding the additional weight of the seat, thus the need to modify the law.
How can you be sure you’re meeting these guidelines? Weigh your child, then weight the seat, then add them together. If they’re over 65lbs combined, start using the seat belt restraint versus the LATCH system.
The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that children remain in harness (including 5 point harness or booster with seatbelt) until the age of 8, which prompted car seat manufacturers to design car seats meant for higher weights. Car seat laws vary state-by-state and your specific state requirements for car seats can be found here. Personally, I make sure that I follow North Carolina law and AAP recommendations.
What can you do to ensure your children are being buckled in properly? Have your seat installation inspected at your local NHTSA office.