Baby has always been a fussy eater, but one range of products that she has never struggled with is Kiddylicious. She’s not a fruit lover, only recently eating an actual apple, but she always gets her fruit fix from Fruit Wriggles and Smoothie Melts! Kiddylicious recently undertook some research that produced some very interesting findings.
Their #insidebabysbrain campaign found that 49% of parents with babies and toddlers view snacking as a negative food habit, despite the evidence showing that it vital for early sensory and physiological development. Of the same parents, 36% admit to enjoying snacks between meals themselves, even though they don’t allow their baby to eat finger foods in between meals.
In this campaign, Kiddylicious have been joined by child expert Dr. Jacqueline Harding. She has looked #insidebabysbrain to give us more information about why snacking is so important for little ones:
“Babies are intelligent: they are information-gathering decisions makers! They are very busy making hypotheses about the world. So, playing with food is the sort of experimental work they do as researchers! From their body movements and facial expressions, we can get a glimpse of what might be going on in their minds – figuring out the taste and texture of foods. What’s it like inside babies’ brain? Well…it’s rather busy –if we were to take a look inside their brains we would see that it is flooded with neural transmitters that induce learning and plasticity. In other words, they are very receptive to new experiences and want to learn. This is all very important when it comes to opportunities to learn through the senses. Babies are born with around 30,000 taste buds coating their tongue, throat, cheeks and even the roof of their mouth, so they experience food in a completely different way to adults (who have just one third of this). The safe introduction of a variety of tastes and textures (as advised by your health visitor and doctor) can assist with sensory development”
This makes so much sense! To help us parents understand the benefits of snacking, Kiddylicious have made this great video.
You can also download the free guide here.
So how does snacking on finger food help babies achieve these sensory and physiological developmental milestones that happen around 6-8 months of age;
- Improved head and neck control – safe swallowing.
- Hand-eye co-ordination – learning to self-feed
- Jaw movement – enabling babies to suck, bite and munch on foods, even before teething.
- Taste-bud development – allowing them to recognise which flavours they like and dislike (which is essential for exploration and food acceptance).
- Practice using all the mouth, lip and jaw muscles – helps oral development and speech.
- Improved tongue control – can help babies to learn how to chew, swallow and move foods from side to side in their mouth.
The nutrition that your baby receives during their first 1,000 days (from conception to two years of age) can have a significant impact on their health and wellbeing, which can last a lifetime. The introduction of finger food snacks can play an essential role in this developmental milestone for babies.
To celebrate snacking and the launch of the #insidebabysbrain campaign, the lovely folk at Kiddylicious have given me a hamper full of snacks to give away to one lucky reader. Enter via the widget below; the more options you complete, the more chance you have of winning!
The hamper includes;
1 x Blueberry Wafers (1 box of 10 sachets)
1 x Banana Wafers (as above)
1 x Carrot Wafers (as above)
1 x Blueberry Fruity Puffs (one box of 6 sachets)
1 x Banana Fruity Puffs (as above)
1 x Strawberry Fruity Puffs (as above)
Disclosure: This is a collaborative post.