Varied pregnancy diet linked to happy eaters

Babies more likely to embrace new foods if expectant mums have broad diet

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Keeping a varied diet during pregnancy means your baby will be more likely to embrace new foods.

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Research from French scientists shows that babies in the womb become better accustomed to the foods their mothers eat whilst pregnant.

A group of mothers towards the end of pregnancy were given aniseed sweets and once their babies were born, they introduced them to the aniseed smell. Those babies who had been exposed to aniseed in the womb seemed to react more positively to the scent than others.

Benoist Schaal of Bourgogne University said, ‘During pregnancy the womb is relatively permeable and what the mother takes in goes in a certain dose to the foetus during a time when the brain is being formed, probably with long-term consequences.’

The first few weeks of weaning were also proven to be an important time to introduce flavours and foods to babies to avoid long-term fussy eating habits.

One group of babies were given pureed carrots for ten days, while the other group were given a variety of pureed vegetables as well as carrots. Both groups were then tested with new purees of fish or ham and those with a varied diet were the most open-minded to new foods.

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