Author Topic: BLW and cavemummas  (Read 2075 times)

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Offline Shdef

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BLW and cavemummas
« on: June 15, 2014, 14:14:28 pm »
I just talked to my granny's best friend who is in her 80s and has spent 50 years with tribes, observing and inventing a written language for the different ones. I asked her about BLW and she was actually quite offended at the new approach. She is from Namibia and the idea that babies should only feed themselves and mess around and play with their food really isn't what ancient and current tribes do traditionally.

Tribal mums weren't animals who couldn't use tools, people have used mortar and pestle to puree and fire to cook and spoons to feed their babies for thousands and thousands of years. And not at some 'mark' like when they could sit up and do it themselves, but quite the opposite sometimes.  :-\

Also, playing with food and throwing it about is not what was ever encouraged in societies where food was scarce, but now it is somehow seen as this 'tribal' thing?

This new 'No spoons, no purees' approach, because that is what cavemumms did, as she didn't have a blender is quite insulting and unfounded. Based on a book that presents no evidence, like Gill Rapley's.  :-\

Offline *Liz*

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Re: BLW and cavemummas
« Reply #1 on: June 15, 2014, 14:36:27 pm »
Interesting Steffi.

Certainly hard to believe puréed food has no role after all those years hey???

I think early finger food as well is my favourite approach personally.

Offline Shdef

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Re: BLW and cavemummas
« Reply #2 on: June 15, 2014, 14:40:04 pm »
Most people like both. And most people always have  ;D

No need for radicalism.

Offline MasynSpencerElliotte

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Re: BLW and cavemummas
« Reply #3 on: June 15, 2014, 14:58:18 pm »
Thh I have never heard of that link with blw and ancient/tribal times (hmm makes me wonder about other cultures - surely they weren't/aren't all the same? Something to google when (if ;)) I have a spare moment!).  I did a mix of the two with all my kids when they started showing they were ready to eat and it has worked fine - that to me is the benchmark - whether it works for me and my baby!
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Offline Shdef

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Re: BLW and cavemummas
« Reply #4 on: June 15, 2014, 15:26:59 pm »

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Re: BLW and cavemummas
« Reply #5 on: June 15, 2014, 16:13:56 pm »
The only thing I have concern about in general about feeding babies, is when babies hit, I don't know, maybe the 8th month plus mark, maybe a tad older, and start to drop their milk intake a bit in favor of solids. I know a lot of people then suggest, on many sites, to back off on the solids and allow their milk intake to come back up. Really not sure what the point of that is in an older baby, when after the year mark, most people would be happy to have them eating off the family table anyway, per se. If their milk intake is deemed to be an issue, might be easier to incorporate it into their food anyway, rather them try to encourage more bottles, more breastfeeds etc. Just my thoughts anyway.

Offline *Liz*

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Re: BLW and cavemummas
« Reply #6 on: June 15, 2014, 16:28:03 pm »
^^^ never made any sense to me either!

Offline creations

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Re: BLW and cavemummas
« Reply #7 on: June 15, 2014, 17:14:35 pm »
I never considered BLW to be new, radical or tribal, that's certainly not the reason I chose to do BLW, but then I never read the book so perhaps all that is in a book I never read.  I never saw the need to read the book, it's just finger foods which was being suggested in feeding guidelines in the UK to be introduced at 6 months anyway. I did however read little bits here and there about the theory and actually it really put me off of reading the book - something about only BF babies can self feed ??? That got my back up because I couldn't BF past 4 weeks and really didn't want to be told that my baby couldn't eat finger foods just because I'd failed at BF as though this disqualified him from picking up food and putting it in his mouth.
I think the playing with food has become something quite different from my idea of exploring food. I wouldn't have had DS throw or waste food, but I do agree with exploring food. Children in some societies/households get involved with food prep, picking, collecting, farming, shopping, sorting, chopping, cooking etc far earlier than children in other societies, the 'norm' is very different depending where one is from. That sort of exploration of food is IMO healthy whilst tossing it across the room is not.


Offline MasynSpencerElliotte

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Re: BLW and cavemummas
« Reply #8 on: June 15, 2014, 20:29:42 pm »
That link doesn't work Steffi...and to me blw and the "food before one" rule are two different things? I could feed my kid straight purees and still adhere to that (or not as the case may be!). Personally I think the saying is helpful just so a person doesn't get worried or hung up on pushing solids and if it is a case where baby drops milk intake drastically then it only makes sense to me that a nutrient dense food like bm or formula should have a bit more importance than solids.

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Offline *Ali*

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Re: BLW and cavemummas
« Reply #9 on: June 15, 2014, 22:48:13 pm »
I didn't even realise there was a link being made between tribal/cavemama feeding and BLW. I always think of BLW as a modern approach in light of what we know now about it being better to wait until babies' digestive tracts are mature enough to handle solid foods and therefore they don't need their food mushing at this older age.

I think of people of olden times feeding tiny babies mush simply because at 8wo or 3mo or whenever they started trying to feed their infants supplementary food that is all they could handle and they simply didn't know better because they didn't have access to the research we have these days.

The milk being most important to me makes sense because breast milk is the best source of food for a baby under one in terms of the ratios and density of nutrients. No solid food is comparable. Before 12mo babies simply cannot eat solid food in sufficient quantities to get the balance of nutrients they need plus their digestive systems are designed to cope better with breast milk until they are more mature. Solid food is complementary but should not replace the milk before 1yo. Babies don't know what they need to grow optimally. They may be happy to eat fruit or rice or even doughnuts all day but that doesn't mean it is the best thing for them. That is why the WHO recommend ensuring sufficient milk intake and cutting back on solids to do so if need be. If people are BFing as the WHO recommends then it is difficult to incorporate that milk into solid food unless you are a successful pumper which then introduces an opportunity for potential bacteria etc. to get into the food supply. Plus mixing breast milk with other foods or refrigerating, freezing or heating etc. can alter the composition of the milk. That is why it is preferable to feed directly from the breast where possible.

Obviously only some of those things apply to FF but the one about having the optimum level of nutrients would be a major one that still hold true.
« Last Edit: June 15, 2014, 22:59:35 pm by *Ali* »
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Offline Shdef

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Offline *Ali*

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Re: BLW and cavemummas
« Reply #11 on: June 16, 2014, 08:00:42 am »
Still says the blog doesn't exist when I click on it...
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Offline anna*

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Re: BLW and cavemummas
« Reply #12 on: June 16, 2014, 08:12:05 am »
So is the problem that doing finger food only is 'wrong'? Or that attributing BLW to some ancient wisdom is wrong? Or both? (PS if anyone has any magic tips for how to prevent babies from playing with food, it'd be great to hear them). I think it's fair enough to say that if you're spoon feeding your baby that it's not *strictly* baby led. Equally, that doesn[t make it wrong, right? ;)





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Re: BLW and cavemummas
« Reply #13 on: June 16, 2014, 08:13:44 am »
(for the record, Stan was fed on purees and finger foods. Audrey wouldn't let me put a spoon anywhere near her - couldn't even give her meds with a syringe - so she did nothing but finger foods from day 1. Audrey was also early potty trained. "Ancient wisdom"? Daresay many would have started and finished much earlier than I did. Baby led? Not at all.





Offline MasynSpencerElliotte

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Re: BLW and cavemummas
« Reply #14 on: June 16, 2014, 08:26:45 am »
Still says the blog doesn't exist when I click on it...

Just realized the filter is changing the word "sh!t" to poo* - I think that is why because I googled and found it.
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Offline weaver

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Re: BLW and cavemummas
« Reply #15 on: June 16, 2014, 09:22:13 am »
BLW worked a treat for us.  Neither of mine would've gone for being spoon-fed, LO2 refused any plastic near her mouth, not bottles, nothing.  Both have a great attitude to food.   The reality is that they depended on BFing for most of their nutrients to one and somewhere beyond, and I suspect that would also be a factor in more traditional societies.

I've read widely on the topic and have never heard anyone say anything about it being 'tribal'. I am deeply suspicious of any argument based on the idea that something the writer sees as 'primitive' is by definition either better or worse.   It definitely would not convince me to adopt (or not adopt) a diet, or anything else, for my children.
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Re: BLW and cavemummas
« Reply #16 on: June 16, 2014, 09:24:02 am »
Thinking that 'tribal' mums didn't spoon-feed their babies purées is a bit arrogant.  :-\

And assuming that 'BLW only' is the ONLY and BEST way doesn't have any evidence to be better in any way.

Also, 'finger foods' aren't really new, so I don't actually 'get' the BLW hype  ???

Babies refusing spoons is different though. Scotty always loves both, and that is fine, too.


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Re: BLW and cavemummas
« Reply #17 on: June 16, 2014, 09:32:47 am »
I don't really understand what this thread is about, Steffi.  Are you trying to start an argument?  Or looking for people's reactions?

In case you misunderstand me, I do not agree with people who view 'tribal' people as 'primitive' or somehow 'more authentic' than we are.  I don't see what you are characterising as 'arrogant', if indeed that remark is aimed at me.  I think speaking and writing of 'tribal' peoples by "Westerners" is usually paired with patronising, condescending, idealising and objectifying attitudes which simplify their existences by taking out random aspects of context.  As I said above, I am deeply suspicious of it.
*Anne*, loving mama to a honeybee (2010) and a sweetpea (2012).  BF for 4 proud years.


Offline Shdef

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Re: BLW and cavemummas
« Reply #18 on: June 16, 2014, 10:02:08 am »
No, it wasn't aimed at anyone, personally. I just don't get the hype or the notion that this is the only right way. But then, you don't see that notion on BW anyway, as it is quite balanced.

Nah, was just talking about some friends who recently got a bit judgemental about mums who like to cook and spoonfeed their little babies.

Offline Erin M

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Re: BLW and cavemummas
« Reply #19 on: June 16, 2014, 13:17:08 pm »
I think the spoon thing is an individual baby preference -- I had 2 that would gladly take a spoon and one that would have nothing to do with them.  But yes, back to the idea that we need to do what works for our kids. 

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Re: BLW and cavemummas
« Reply #20 on: June 16, 2014, 15:13:43 pm »
I think most parenting books are written in such a way as to suggest that their approach is the best. Surely if they didn't think it was any better than other methods they wouldn't be writing a book about it.

Finger foods are not new no. BLW is more about the fact that pureeing and mashing is unnecessary when babies can eat most foods in their more natural state just like an adult would.
« Last Edit: June 16, 2014, 19:57:44 pm by *Ali* »
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binxyboo

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Re: BLW and cavemummas
« Reply #21 on: June 16, 2014, 15:50:03 pm »
^^^^^ That!

Offline RyansMum

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Re: BLW and cavemummas
« Reply #22 on: June 18, 2014, 19:35:31 pm »
It's amazing we have survived for so long huh? :P

I think you have to do what is right for you and put down the majority of the books. I spoon fed and did finger foods. Luckily he took to it all and is a fantastic eater to this day liking far more than his Mum ever did! It's all about money at the end of the day. They want to sell books, everyone has an opinion. While of course there are advances that are good and right, assuming everything before was wrong or bad is nonsense. It has brought even more judgement on parents.