Jo Travers, otherwise known as The London Nutritionist, answers all our Scummy Mummy queries.
Baby-led weaning is fun and interactive. It can be a great bonding experience for parents and babies. But it can also drive you mad! It can take hours for the baby to eat anything, and this can often leave them hungry and grumpy.
Also, there are some lovely foods for babies that don't lend themselves to this style - porridge, for example. It's lovely to occasionally do some messy finger-painting with porridge, but it's also nice to get some of it in their mouths with a spoon. In practice, I think a mix of traditional and baby-led works best.
Personally? I got my daughter to realise she actually liked lettuce by playing the who-can-crunch-the-loudest game. Now she just eats it and I don't have to play the game anymore. Result!
Game playing is good and works quite often. Another game that's popular in our house is the pretend-you-are-a-giant-eating-trees one with broccoli.
Is it OK to bribe kids to behave at the table, finish their plate and so on with the promise of pudding?
It's not ideal, because the food you want them to eat can become seen as the barrier standing between the child and the ice cream. This can lead to resentment of the carrots / sprouts / brown rice or whatever it is. No one likes that kind of barrier, especially kids.
Having said that, it does work surprisingly well.
They are both good. Fruit juice has other stuff like folate, potassium and vitamin C. Fruit Shoots offer a tasty alternative to water that isn't really too full of chemicals.
I would keep juice for mealtimes, when the extra saliva produced helps lower the impact on teeth and additional food helps lower the glycaemic load of the sugar. Use Fruit Shoots for hydration at other times - there is loads of evidence to say that many kids don't drink enough.
Bake biscuits sweetened only with grated apple and make your own hummus to have with homemade oatcakes.
Just kidding, I know nobody does that. Yes, it's OK to buy snacks, but remember that the purpose of a snack is to provide some energy and nutrients to keep hunger at bay. Some of those weird crisps seem to be mainly air, which serves no purpose - other than pacifying, obviously. And just for the record, using food as a pacifier is not good!
Where possible, choose things that tick off two of the five food groups - carbs, protein, dairy, fruit and veg. For example, hummus and crackers = protein and carbs. Cream cheese and carrot sticks = protein, dairy and veg.
Yes. They are a great source of protein, they are really easy to cook and kids love them.
But check the ingredients list for things that don't sound like food - not all fish fingers are not all created equal.
In terms of sustainability, possibly (although that's not my area.) In terms of nutrients, probably not. In terms of chemical residues, maybe.
Carbs. Five fist-sized portions of wholegrain carbs spread evenly throughout the day. Aim for between one and one-and-a-half portions per meal.
How much wine can we drink? What about while breastfeeding?
I'm not sure how much wine you can drink, but I'm guessing you can hold your own.
Joking aside - try to stick within the guidelines of 2-3 units a day, with at least couple of consecutive alcohol-free days per week.
Some alcohol does make it into breastmilk, but no one is quite sure of the effect this has on the baby. Typically the concentration of breastmilk alcohol will be the same as your blood alcohol level. But remember that babies are a lot smaller, so the effect is magnified.
Stick to one drink though as more than this pushes up the time it takes for the alcohol to get through your system. Eating alongside drinking tends to slow the increase in blood alcohol level, and is better for your liver.
Is it really so bad to eat an entire packet of chocolate Hob Nobs in one sitting?