- In This Feature
- Fact or Fiction
- Myth #1: Baby's First Food Must be Rice Cereal
- Myth #2: Babies are at High Risk for Food Allergies
- Myth #3: If a Baby Refuses Food He Doesn't Like It
- Myth #4: Babies Know Exactly What They Need to Eat
- Myth #5: Commercial Baby Food is Preferable to Table Food
- Myth #6: Parents Should Only Offer a Small Variety of Bland Foods
- Myth #7: If I Feed My Baby Well, It Doesn't Matter What I Eat
Myth #3: If a Baby Refuses Food He Doesn't Like It
An allergy is one thing, but what about a food that your baby simply refuses to eat? Perhaps your culinary adventurer adamantly refuses to try green vegetables.
"There's a lot of good research to show that children are notoriously stubborn about new foods," says Dr. Kleinman. It's often necessary to introduce the unpalatable food multiple times. Leann Birch, head of the Department of Human Development and Family Studies at Penn State, published a study on food preferences in children. In it, she found that parents must present a food six to eight times before a baby will accept it.
Don't force it, but don't give up easily, either. You really do know more about nutrients, vitamins, and calories than your baby does, and he's counting on you to persist.