Monday, January 24, 2011

Babies need solids earlier than six findings?

Researchers look at the past studies in the areas of infant infection, nutritional adequacy, iron intake, allergies and concluded that solid food need to be introduce before six months. Time to break it down.  After reading this from the Natural Parenting Group I had to say something.  

When they look at the studies in regards to infant infection they found that kids who were exclusive breastfeeding (EBF) got fewer infections. No news here.  They did say that the benefit might taper off after three months. Really? I have never heard this before from my mom circles or from any professional. Formula feed babies had the highest rate of infections. Does this surprise us?! Nothing against the moms that formula feed but we have know for some time now that EBF is the best for our little ones.

Then the researchers look to see if breast milk can sustain an infant's needs (nutritional adequacy).  nI my opinion they didn't find anything new.  They stated that breast milk was nutritionally adequate for babies who were EBF for six month. Then they go on and say that if babies got solid foods earlier breast milk may not have been enough for them. This makes no sense! Seems to me that they didn't find anything but because of the pressure to present finding they had to come up with something. 

When they looked to see if babies were getting enough iron all they could say is if you had a low birth weight baby and you plan to EBF then you need to think about an iron supplement and watch out for anemia. This seems like common sense to me. 

Now for the area of allergies. The researcher found that kids who had gluten allergies were more likely to have gotten them before three months or after six months. They stated that kids who started gluten type solids between four and six months have fewer gluten allergies and lower incidence of celiac disease. But the Natural Parenting Group makes a great point that kids now a days seem to have more sensitives then when we were kids. Could this be due to the change of living and all the processed food we consume.  Maybe its from all the chemicals that are surround our selves with. Of course that is all speculation but it gives you something to think about.

So overall, This study doesn't seem to bring us any ground breaking news. EBF is still the way to go! I wouldn't worry about giving your baby solid foods before they are three months. We are make for this and our breast milk provides everything that our little cuties need.  If you baby shows signs of wanting solids between four and six months then you can begin to introduce them.

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