What Others are Saying

First Bites is the book I wish I had when my children were babies. Hilary Bernstein’s background in journalism and passion for healthy living shines through on each page as she shares her extensive research, her own experiences as a mom of two, and stories from other families as well. While Bernstein gives valuable (and eye-opening!) information concerning the dangers of many of the pre-made baby food products available in our grocery stores, she leaves readers feeling empowered rather than helpless with her tips for making homemade baby food and ideas for cutting costs on healthy ingredients. Bernstein writes, ‘Remember that God has entrusted you with your little person. Fill your babe with plenty of nourishing foods.’ First Bites is a push in the right direction for the mom who wants to nourish her child in the best way possible, and give him or her a lifetime of healthy eating habits.

- Kristy, Amazon review

I really enjoyed Hilary’s collection of information, and definitely recommend it for any new mamas, or not-so-new mamas who are looking to go a little more crunchy (and healthy).  It would make a great gift as well! I just have a couple cautions as you read this book: first, if you are not breastfeeding (for whatever reason) you may want to skip on to the solid food chapters.  There is a quick section on how to choose a formula, but I imagine most of the information about formula would be upsetting for any mama who is formula feeding.  Secondly, Hilary is a Christian, and has a long chapter about a biblical design for feeding.  I know religion is not everyone’s thing, so just know that it pops up now and then.  If you don’t like it, you can skip that part.

- Victoria, Green Idea Reviews

Bernstein’s book is a well-written, down-to-earth view of the biblical perspective on healthy eating. This is an easy, quick read, and Bernstein is so personable and relatable. … Read this book. It will give a biblically based view of how we should feed our families. This is a very welcomed view, not just a fad ‘green’ book for the sake of being popular. Bernstein uses Scripture to show how healthy eating is important for ourselves, and is important to God.

- Lissa, Amazon review

As the mom of a 3-month-old and 3-year-old, I am really concerned with how to give them the best start health-wise, but usually find all the information out there about how to do so confusing and inaccessible. This book, First Bites, is fantastic. Not only does the author explain the scientific facts behind each of her recommendations very clearly, but she also uses examples to back up her recommendations from real moms facing the same issues we all face. I really felt after reading the book that I was clear on what I needed to do to make sure my kids are as healthy as possible – what to avoid, and what to focus on – and why. The author’s writing style is also very welcoming- she uses examples from her own life and shares her experience with her own children – which I really enjoyed.

- Carrie, Amazon review

I love how Hilary addresses the topic of nursing.  This can be a challenging topic since mothers who don’t nurse can be defensive, and mothers who do nurse can be self-righteous.  The facts about how important nursing is and how bad formulas are, are shared with grace and compassion.  Not everyone can nurse, for a variety of reasons.  And those who are able but choose not to for reasons known only to them, are not automatically terrible mothers.  But every mom ought to know the truth, and be able to make informed decisions.

- Heather, A Mother’s Calling

A great part of the book was all the testimonials from real moms.  These touched on everything from baby-led weaning to breastfeeding to formula feeding.  They really make you feel like you aren’t alone on the “Am I feeding my child the best way I can?” path.  

- Melissa, Adventures with Captain Destructo

Bernstein walks expectant and new moms through the nutritional maze of choices confronting them. She describes the differences of breastfeeding and formula feeding and explains how making your own baby food is not only healthier than store-bought but often cheaper as well. She also offers tips on how and when to introduce new foods and discusses the effects additives can have on behavior.

“Sometimes people feel pressured to make big changes right away,” she said, “but if they take away one thing from the book, I hope it’s that they understand taking small steps will lead to bigger changes. You have to start somewhere, and every small change will make a difference. It’s not something that has to happen all at once.”

- Judy, The Gazette

Want to hear what others are saying about First Bites?

First Bites has changed my life! Not only does Hilary Bernstein offer simple solutions to what we should be feeding our children, but she also explains why! Who knew eating natural, healthy foods could be this easy and affordable? Bernstein’s down-to-earth writing style incorporates humor, encouragement, and research-based information and is certain to inspire all readers. A gem of a resource and a MUST READ!

- Jen, Amazon review

Bernstein sheds light on some real food issues that are important not only for your kids- but for everyone. Perhaps my favorite thing about First Bites is Bernstein’s flexibility. She understands that every baby is unique – and therefore every baby will have his or her own unique feeding schedule and preferences. She provides evidence based information on breastfeeding over formula feeding, but she is also certain to add that she is in no way trying to judge a formula feeding mother. She also reassures parents: If you can’t make every healthy choice every single time, don’t fret. She gives realistic advice on making small changes, one step at a time.

While firm on evidence-based feeding, Bernstein realizes that every family will have their own distinctive challenges in their quest to nourish their babies. This is a big deal, especially when breastfeeding vs. bottle, organic vs. not, and allowing the occasional junk food or not can turn into major mommy wars. Thank you, Ms. Bernstein, for addressing baby-feeding issues with both truth and grace.

- Abigail, The Birth Bug

Though I’ve read many blog posts and articles on similar topics, I really appreciated her realistic approach. We are parents who want to provide the best for our children but our ideal is not always what is possible.  Some women would like to breastfeed but are physically unable. Give yourself grace!

Hilary gives helpful information on how to choose the best  formula for your child. And who wouldn’t want to be able to afford buying all organic produce? For most of us this isn’t possible. She knows we are parents with busy lives and limited incomes. She’s one as well. That’s why she (and Kelsi and I) stress the importance of starting small. Making just one change can have a big impact in the health of your family.
 
I also greatly appreciated the personal stories that are shared throughout the book. Real moms sharing THEIR stories. These stories along with Hilary’s practical tips on a variety of topics including when and how to start solids, budget friendly baby food tips, and simple and healthy hints to make in your family’s life make it a great book for any mom.

- Gretchen, Cheeky Bums Blog 

I decided to read First Bites as a refresher before I begin introducing solid foods to my son, the youngest of four. Wow! Instead of being just a ‘refresher,’ Bernstein’s book has reeducated this mama, and compelled me to rethink my choices when it comes to nourishing my little ones. She equips and encourages readers with the wisdom and knowledge they need to start making healthier, more wholesome choices for their children. Chock full of testimonials from real moms, First Bites embraces each mother’s passion for wanting to give their children nothing but the best and gives those moms practical, how-to information and advice. It is a must read whether this is your first time around the block … or your fourth!

- Anne, Amazon review

My family is on a journey of eating real foods and a large part of this is making sure that my kids are eating healthy. Well, healthy eating starts first in the womb and then when you are breastfeeding and introducing solids. Hilary gives an excellent step-by-step guide on everything you need to know about your baby’s first year. I highly recommend that all new moms pick up this book!

- Jami, Young Wife’s Guide

First Bites by Hilary Kimes Bernstein is a must read for every new mother. Finally! A book that tells you the real truth of what’s in food and what God really intended for your baby. … Kimes talks about feeding your baby, from in the womb to the toddler years. She goes into the benefits of breastfeeding, and then backs it up with biblical principles. Some might get offended with her straight-forward talk about the whole issue, since it’s such a sensitive topic, but she’s not trying to offend. Kimes is just pointing out hard facts about breast feeding verses formula. … But this book is not just about infancy! My children are ages 2 and up so I was really looking forward to the toddler years in this book. Kimes’ methods of explanation are exceptional.

- Janine, Classics Defined

I had the pleasure of reading a new eBook, First Bites: How to Instill Healthy Eating Habits During Your Baby’s First Year. Hilary Kimes Bernstein, of the green blog Accidentally Green, shares with us her mistakes and triumphs feeding her two children through their first years in her new book.

This is a book that I wish I had read before I had children. It not only shares the importance of breast milk (which I lacked information) but about which foods are ideal as starter foods, and how to progress your toddler into healthy eating habits.

This book is also an easy read, which is great for parents who have a lot going on! Hilary is quick to make her points and offer suggestions, and the book is easy to understand.

- Katie, Living Crunchy

 My favorite part of the eBook is all of the information on artificial colors found in processed foods and how they can affect young children. Who knew a pack of fruit snacks could be behind my four-year-old’s tantrums? I also really like the hints that Hilary gives to help you get your children on the right path to eating healthy. … First Bites reflects that Hilary is an experienced journalist. This eBook is not only well-written, but is well-researched. There are 27 chapters jam-packed with information to help you make the best choices in regards to feeding your child. It is well worth the $9.99 price tag.

- Joanie, Simple Living Mama

I loved the use of Bible verses to support healthy eating and healthy lifestyle choices.  It was just a great way to bring food choices into a Biblical perspective.  God does care about what we eat, and how much or how little food we have. Our bodies are temples for him and we should treat them accordingly. Hilary has done her homework and this book is well-researched.

- Leslie, Simply Better

She does a fantastic job of breaking it down, then backing it up with information as to what and why different things are best, and things to absolutely avoid. … I really appreciated having the information right in front of me with the backup research that I don’t have the time to look for. All in all, a great book to help you put your child on the right path for healthy eating, especially if you’re a first time mom or dad.

- Jessica, Life in the White House

What do you think?

E-mail your own reactions to firstbitesbook@gmail.com.

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