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Why It's Good (and Bad) to Start Early

New data that shows that diets full of fruits and rawvegetables, especially broccoli sprouts and blackraspberries, could prevent or slow the growth of some commonforms of cancer. And there's a surprising new way to getyour baby to like vegetables (hint: Start EARLY) But be careful about SOMETHING ELSE you couldgive your baby a taste for!

Want your baby to learn to like fruits andvegetables? Ifyou?re breast feeding, start eating them yourself!

Researcher Julie A. Mennella says, ?The best predictor ofhow much fruits and vegetables children eat is whether theylike the tastes of these foods. If we can get babies tolearn to like these tastes, we can get them off to an earlystart of healthy eating.? Can they taste them in breastmilk? Scientists think they definitely can. "It's abeautiful system," says Mennella. "Flavors from the mother'sdiet are transmitted through amniotic fluid andmother's milk. So, a baby learns to like a food's taste when the mothereats that food on a regular basis."

But if you drink while you're pregnant, your baby may get ataste for booze, and that ISN'T good. Young people whosemothers drank when pregnant may be more likely to abusealcohol because, in the womb, their developing senses cameto prefer its taste and smell. The developing nervous systemof infants adapts to whatever mothers eat and drink.Researchers discovered this by finding that young ratsexposed to alcohol (ethanol) in the womb drank significantlymore alcohol than non-exposed rats.

Art credit: freeimages.co.uk

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