Some thoughts and insights

Submission to the Senate Committe on the Obesity Epidemic in Australia

This submission to the Senate was to draw attention to the consolidated case for infant self-feeding as an obesity prevention initiative, simply by supporting development of health self-regulation habits.
The bottom line is that no country has - or will - reduce their obesity rate simply by providing information on healthy diet and exercise patterns.
This hasn't worked in 188 countries in 30+ years because dietary habits set from infancy are the biggest contributor; typical scapegoats of poor diet and exercise are merely exacerbating factors.
Intervention is needed in earliest stages, and self-feeding can makes things so much less stressful for child and parent – if given the right tools for messier foods.

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Self-feeding, Spoon-feeding and obesity

There's lately been a flurry of articles about the much awaited Bliss Study, published October last year. (Just Google "Baby led weaning and obesity" and you'll see what I mean). BLW is all about food as a learning exercise, the exploration of texture and sensation. The baby’s gag reflex is trusted to make sure they’re not swallowing stuff whole, and some start with quite hard foods quite young. Others smoosh around soft stuff, or anything in between. “Self-feeding” means just that. Your bub does the job however suits them, which may or may not include mushing it about. Baby Led Weaning could probably be described as a type of self feeding.

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Fussy eaters all grown up. (Or - why Mashblox means so much to me)

I was staying with George* when I was first inspired to create Mashblox®.

He was even there grocery shopping when I saw that two year old boy dropping and chasing his apple, and we just sat in silence on the bench in the sun while I nutted out how one would make a more convenient, practical, hygienic solution for kids’ tendencies to play with their food and explore the world through their mouths.
It was only when I prototyped the concept that I realised the side effect of allowing children full, playful control of their intake, and started researching benefits of this.
Now George in his early 30s and all he eats is meat, and bread, and cheese. Because I love him dearly, I asked him an honest question why? And because he loves me too, he gave me an open answer: he doesn’t like the texture of anything else.

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Baby Led Weaning and Obesity Prevention

Reading this on ScienceNews.org annoyed me a bit. I just Googled my title “Baby Led Weaning and Obesity” and caught a ream of secondary articles dismissing my hypothesis of overweight and obesity prevention on some pretty selective data. I just chanced to read this one first. It pegs infant self-feeding down as merely “entertaining”, but gives the practice a back-pat for promoting a positive overall feeding experience. It does concede reduced fussiness, but that isn’t a problem unless it is, so I can see why this is so easily dismissed in a single sentence in their last paragraph.

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