Little Miss / Our Life Now / Parenting

French Food Rules

I found this the other day and had to share with you all. (forgive me for not crediting the source, I really can’t remember where I found it, if you know, please share so I can give credit! It might be from the book, French Children Don’t Throw Food…)

It’s pretty interesting to me since we did Baby Led Weaning with our Little Miss. The baby-led weaning method of weaning appealed to us so much, once we understood what it was about, and strangely enough a lot of the things we loved about it are on this list, the French don’t call it baby-led weaning though, they just call it eating or meal time!

We wanted our daughter to have a healthy relationship with food as she got older, and it seems she does, most of the time. As a toddler she has a very good appetite but like most toddlers, she sometimes gets tired and distracted when at the dining table. She also doesn’t eat everything we put down to her, we do tell her to try it though and she does. I’m confident we follow these rules…all besides one – Number 7!!! I’m sure I’ve told you all before, our Little Miss eats all the time and it seems she never gets full, though, I’m sure when she is in school she isn’t thinking about food. The school day is loooooong in France, so it’s got me thinking that maybe she just snacks at home when she is with me, and if this is the case then there really is something in these French Rules on Food.

What are your thoughts on this? Do the French have something here with these rules? Are you French and DON’T follow these rules? Do you already do this with your kids? Are you struggling with your child and their diet? Are some of the things on the list more important that others?

Let me know!

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5 thoughts on “French Food Rules

  1. Yup! That’s how it is with a lot of families (and not at all in some) but it does depend like anywhere. I think there is a massive change in attitude to food from 18m onwards in France and it does fit in really nicely with BLW.

    When BiP started going to the Nounou (Daycare at Nanny’s home) at 14m she was shocked that BiP ate normal food and not puree and she asked with fascination at how I got BiP to eat veggies – Urrr I gave them to her?

    Now BiP is at the creche, in the older group (18m-3yrs) they all sit down for a meal together that is 4 courses with loads of variety and veges etc … they insist all the kids stay at the table and eat together.

    Whilst they aren’t forced to eat what’s in front of them they are made to taste everything which I don’t argue with at all. It’s interesting how in collectivity they are so much better behaved and open to the idea! (But I must note that there does seems to be a little bit more mashed stuff on the plate than I’d like)

    Funnily from 6m-12m I was chastised repeatedly for BLW as it was “dangerous”

    • Its fascinating to me that the French are so shocked with BLW from 6 months, when it’s so in line with how they treat food and dining. I’ve had a few interesting reactions too when Little Miss was younger.
      I do love that Little Miss will sit down at lunch, (when she is able to stay in school over lunch time, fingers crossed it’s soon!!) with her little friends and eat a proper meal. I think BLW has set her up quite nicely for this transition.
      Aren’t we the smug parents now!! (this is the only thing I’ll ever allow myself to be smug about!)

  2. So interesting, thanks for sharing! I totally agree with that list! Children can only develop a sense of taste when they try everything. But I am with you on point 7, snacking is OK if the snacks are healthy.
    The other day, I read an article with my English class about what they call the “French paradox”. Meaning that the French eat all the stuff that in the US everybody is trying to avoid like cream and cheese and pastries (yummm!!!), yet obesity is not an issue in France. The article stated that at school, children would have proper 4 or 5 course menus, and of course, they have to sit down while enjoying their food. It makes sense since it is a fact that our brains only realize we are eating when we sit down for it. Also, we keep better track of what we eat. I noticed that a lot of people with weight issues always claim they don’t eat much, but then you see them snacking junk food all the time and everywhere.

  3. Pingback: Round Here {Week 4} | HJ Underway

  4. I think these are great rules for anyone! It certainly shows how important it is to have our own healthy eating habits before we can teach children anything about it. Easier said than done!

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