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Article
November 17, 1928

THE SELF SELECTION OF DIET IN INFANCY

JAMA. 1928;91(20):1552. doi:10.1001/jama.1928.02700200050018
Abstract

In nature, the various species of animals appear to thrive on food chosen by instinct. The food materials thus selected cover a wide range. Their variety is attested by the fact that some species are herbivorous, some carnivorous, and others omnivorous; yet somehow the result of their different eating habits seems to be nutritive success. These familiar circumstances have often prompted the inquiry whether the instincts of man are not fundamentally better guides in the selection of a diet than are the changing prescriptions designed by the so-called nutrition experts. Formulation of dietaries has become far more restrictive for the adolescent than for the adult. The preschool age, after the period of weaning, is particularly subject at present to definite food prescriptions. Yet many years ago Pereira wrote:

The natural appetite I believe to be an index of the wants of the system; and ought, therefore, to be consulted, to

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