March 29th, 2012
10:35 AM ET
The reaction to actress Alicia Silverstone's mouth-to-mouth technique for feeding her 10-month-old son Bear Blu was "gross!" for some, but others were left wondering what the big deal is.
The video clip, which Silverstone posted on her website, The Kind Life, has since gone viral. It depicts the mom of one mashing up some of Bear's meal in her mouth before spitting it into his. The video itself was taken a month or two ago, "when he was a bit wobbly," Silverstone wrote. "Now he is grabbing my mouth to get the food!"
While her tales of feeding time have undoubtedly put Silverstone in the "quirky celebrity mom" category - one that's already filled with stars like Mayim Bialik, who's not into diapers, as well as those who've named their kids as creatively as possible - it's also raised questions of whether it's healthy.
Chimed in CNN.com commenter Sunnysout, "Sometimes I think we need to just leave celebrities alone with their stupid baby names and gross ways of feeding their young. If the kid doesn't have teeth, he shouldn't be eating something that another person has to chew for them. Use a blender. I swear, sometimes it's just about being different that they seek. This is straight up gross...It would absolutely make me want to puke to chew my food then swap it to my child."
But others point out that it's not that unusual, particularly in other parts of the world.
"[P]remasticating food was how our ancestors fed babies (before blenders). It's actually more natural than modern times and some anthropologists think this is how the human kiss came to be," said commenter Mr mister.
Added commenter Odds, "It's unlikely that this form of feeding could cause any harm to the child, and quite likely that it will make the food easier to digest. It may seem unusual in our modern world, but there was a time before foods came pre-packaged and ready for a baby to eat. How do you suppose mothers fed their children during those times? Or did you imagine they went straight from breast-feeding to eating the same foods as adults?"
Commenter Teddi followed suit, suggesting that "If the thought of this reviles you, do some reading folks. As an aside, not everyone trusts commercially prepared baby food, that's why many use food processors and blenders. In today's society, this is not the worse thing that a parent could do to a child. Remember the Casey Anthony case?"
However, commenter Debbie wasn't totally on board: "I'm all for innovation, but it seems a little off. When our children were about 13 months old, we'd take whatever we were having for dinner (pot roast w/vegetables, for example) and roughly pureed it with a small amount of water. My children were benefiting from nourishing meals and also getting used to not having baby food. Since the first part of digestion actually begins in the mouth, Bear is not getting the full benefit of the nutrition she's trying to give him. Got to give her points for trying, but it's kind of self-defeating since she is actually removing much of the good stuff (vitamins and minerals) with her chewing it first."
But with her website's audience, at least, Silverstone seems to have a supportive audience. While some found her method charming and cute, others said they've already employed the mouth-to-mouth feeding method themselves.
Commenter Angelica McBeath wrote on Silverstone's site Tuesday, "I did this with all three of my girls. It just seem so natural to me. I would chew, they would eat. For all of those that are concerned over hygeine. Dont be. Its your child, do what you feel is right...Love so much that you shared this!!!"
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