We are not birds. So when I saw actress Alicia Silverstone feeding her toddler son like one, I couldn't relate.
Silverstone has come under fire for posting a video on YouTube doing just that. The practice is called premastication or pre-chewing. She chews her son's food and feeds it to him from her mouth to his.
Yuck. I can't imagine a situation where I would do that.
Like Silverstone, I come under fire for how I feed my children. I had so many people, relatives included, who fought me for still nursing after two months. I've been publicly dressed down for not letting my toddler eat cake when he wouldn't eat his dinner first.
Premastication is different, however. Apparently, pre-Gerber mothers have been pre-chewing for centuries during the transition stages from breast milk to solid food. One study from the U.S. National Library of Medicine suggests that poor moms who don't pre-chew have higher instances of kids with poor nutrition.
Could it be that moms who can't afford baby food jars have to feed their kids more milk and formula rather than meat or other solid foods?
Personally, I'm a big fan of kitchen power tools. We have all kinds of Ninjas, blenders and Cuisinarts that chop and crush and pulverize.
I pick asparagus out of the garden and buy other veggies when they look fresh. I steam them, purée them and freeze them in little ice cube trays. When my child is hungry, I nuke a cube with a little rice cereal and voilá. Largely thanks to things that plug in, our kids can eat what we eat.
No matter how much I sympathize with a mom who is trying to do right by her kid, I just can't get my head around pre-chewing my kids' food. Yuck.
The Center for Disease Control says the practice can transmit diseases, such as HIV, AIDS, hepatitis B, and group A strep. Yuck, yuck, yuck and yuck. Why take a chance?
Ms. Silverstone, I applaud you for using your teeth to do what you think is right for your son. However, if you don't mind, I'm just going to stick to using choppers that say "pulse."