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The Taste List

3 September 2010

Back when M was only about 3 months old, I ripped a page out of Parents magazine (November 2009, page 40). It was part of an article about Dr. Alan Greene’s then-new book Feeding Baby Green. I can’t find hide nor hair of it on the Parents website. Some of what was in that article is also in this article in the NYT.

The part I wanted was actually a sidebar to the main article: The Taste List. I don’t know if this information is in the book as I haven’t actually checked it out of the library to see (APL didn’t own a copy when I looked way back then).

The Taste List is a list of the 21 plant families that Dr. Greene recommends that you have your baby try before age 1.

Here are the 21 plant families from the list along with the examples given:

  • Mushrooms: shiitake, crimini, oyster, portobello
  • Bromeliads: pineapple
  • Woody trees: bananas
  • Cruciferous vegetables: broccoli, cauliflower
  • Myrtles: guava, cloves, allspice
  • Umbrellifers: carrot, celery, cilantro, dill
  • Heath plants: blueberry, cranberry
  • Legumes: black beans, chickpeas, lentils, peas
  • Gourds: cucumber, pumpkin/winter squashes, watermelon, zucchini
  • Composites: Artichoke, lettuces, sunflower seeds
  • Sesame: sesame seeds
  • Lilies: asparagus, chive, garlic, onion
  • Rosy plants: apple, apricot, blackberry, cherry, peach, pear, plum, raspberry, strawberry
  • Grapes
  • Citrus plants: grapefruit, orange, lemon, lime
  • Nightshades: eggplant, peppers, white potatoes
  • Laurels: avocado, cinnamon, bay leaves
  • Amaranths: spinach, Swiss chard, beet, quinoa
  • Loosestrifes: pomegranate
  • True grasses: barley, oats, brown rice
  • Bindweeds: sweet potato

Before M turned one, I managed to have her try 18 of the plant families. Since her birthday, she’s tried and liked freeze-dried pomegranates. I still need to try her on citrus and remember to give her some sesame seeds.

The main difference in Dr. Greene’s beginning feeding advice that what is currently commonly seen is not to worry about allergies unless you have a family history of them. He says that feeding your baby the same food over and over again just makes them bored at the time they are mostly open to trying new tastes. If they react to something, he says that it is relatively easy to track it down at this stage and to not worry about it until it happens.

Given that I feel like some of K’s picky eating is/was exacerbated by how we introduced food to him, I had already decided to make sure that M transitioned to table food much more quickly than he did. Reading that article, and especially that list, made me feel like I had a more concrete plan. Thankfully I found the dang piece of paper around a month after we started M on solid foods! We eat a varied enough diet that I had no trouble coming up with the foods for her to try from what we were eating already.

I don’t know how picky M will be about her food in 2 or 3 years, but I feel like I’ve done something that will at least help lessen it.

One Comment leave one →
  1. Lora permalink
    20 September 2010 11:55 pm

    Why is it that I think you wrote this post just for me? Actually, I ripped out the same article and had it posted on the fridge until I got completely frustrated with Gaelyn having some sort of gastric reaction to just about every thing I’ve her. I’m not sure I completely agree that your slow introduction of foods to K make him picky. I used the same method as you with Liam. In fact I think I started him later and introduced slower and he’s just not that picky. Although I am also aiming to be able to check off as many of those catergories by the time Gaelyn reaches a year. At almost 9 months with reflux she’s eaten out of 9, with a dispropotionate number of rosy plants and gourds.

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