Babies weaned on pureed food tend to end up fatter than infants whose first tastes are finger food, researchers believe. Spoon feeding babies mashed up fruits and vegetables appears to give them a sweeter tooth, a Nottingham University team found after studying 155 children.
Infants who are instead allowed to feed themselves solids tend to favour more satiating carbohydrates like toast. This early self-regulation of what to eat keeps them slim, BMJ Open says.
The researchers found spoon-fed babies were more often obese, although, overall, most of the youngsters in both groups were a healthy weight. This weight difference remained even after the investigators accounted for other factors that might have influenced the findings, such the baby's birth weight, how long they were breastfed for and whether their parents were rich or poor.
Dr Ellen Townsend, who led the research, believes baby-led weaning - where the child is offered a range of chunky foods to grab and self-feed - sets the stage for healthy eating in early childhood.The ages of the 155 children who took part in the study ranged between 20 months and six years.
Sourced BBC news