Mom raised her baby very differently and the result was shocking. Health and wellness coach Shannon Cooper decided to raise her newborn baby in a way other parents find very unorthodox. After all, no kids come with a manual.
However, Shannon took a drastic decision not to feed her baby girl Grace, even a gram of sugar or carbs, as part of one particular healthy eating plan. Naturally, this decision took the media by storm with both positive and negative feedback, even by medical experts.
As the old saying goes, you are what you eat. No one knows this better than Brisbane, Australia resident Shannon Cooper. She has spent much of her adult life working to understand what types of different foods do to the human body. According to Shannon, food can either be fuel for our bodies or it can be pure poison. And that’s a motto that she lives by.
This would lead her to make a decision that would affect others around her and some would find this decision downright controversial. So you’ve probably heard the saying, you are what you eat, but have you ever heard the saying that you are what you eat ate? This is another concept that Shannon Cooper strongly believes in. It’s not just what we eat that affects us. The foods that the animals we eat ate can also strongly affect our bodies.
For example, a free range hens eggs can contain up to 19 times the Omega three content than that of caged hens. The same can be said for free range cattle. In light of this, Shannon had an outlandish idea. To put this notion to the test. Shannon Cooper has lots of experience in food and healthy eating.
She got into the field at a very young age and pursued a degree in agricultural science, a specific strand of biology that focuses on the growing and treating of plants that are due to be used for human consumption. So when Shannon had a baby girl named Grace, she had a lot of decisions to make about just how she was going to raise Grace. Shannon, of course, wanted her daughter to be as healthy as possible, but her lifestyle led to a surprising decision. Shannon is an expert when it comes to health and wellness. She even works as a health and wellness coach.
So when it comes to food, she knows what she’s doing. Her entire life revolves around the human body and what we put in it. So when Shannon Cooper decided to start a family, it only made sense that she wanted to be involved in the health of her family and help out the best way that she knew how with food. But no one would have guessed just how it would affect her daughter. Grace wasn’t about to have any normal childhood.
Shannon made a decision that she would make very strict choices regarding the foods that she was going to feed her daughter. In fact, she put her newborn daughter on an exclusive diet. Before you start thinking that Shannon put Grace on a diet because she was overweight, think again. Shannon put Grace on a Paleo diet just as she had done for herself. She’d been on the Paleo diet for much of her adult life.
Shannon, who is a selfproclaimed gut health enthusiast, wasn’t about to feed her daughter baby food out of a jar as it was overly processed and preserved. No, she opted for something much more healthy and natural to feed her daughter. The Paleolithic diet, also known as the caveman diet or the Stone Age diet,
advocates eating only foods that the Paleolithic Peoples were able to Hunt and gather for themselves, meaning eating lots of meat and fish, as well as fresh fruits and vegetables. Shannon Cooper learned about the diet back in 2010, and it completely transformed her life, since the entire diet promotes eating more natural and unprocessed foods. But to Shannon, the diet became more of a lifestyle.
But just how would this lifestyle affect such a young child? Paleo became a lifestyle for Shannon due to her past health issues. For years, she suffered from food allergies and felt like the food she was putting into her body just didn’t make her feel good. It was as if the food was poison and not fuel. The food that Shannon Cooper was once putting into her body was making her feel unwell.
This was quite the opposite of what it was supposed to be doing. So she started looking into changing her diet to feel better and have more energy throughout the day. However, what works for one doesn’t necessarily work for the other. For Shannon Cooper, the Paleo diet worked. She felt better, had more energy, and overall felt healthier.
The diet advocates avoiding sugar, carbs, preservatives, processed foods and other additives. But the most controversial foods that the diet requires one to avoid are dairy products, grains and legumes. According to the medical experts, the Paleo diet certainly has its pros and cons. The main idea behind the diet is to eat like our caveman ancestors did. And lots of experts agree that our ancestors ate healthier than we do in modern times.
Our caveman ancestors ate around three times more produce than that of the typical American. They ate more fiber, protein, Omega three fatty acids, unsaturated fat, and more vitamins and minerals. They also ate far less saturated fat and sodium. While this might have worked for the caveman, Shannon Cooper was about to learn if this diet was healthy for a modern baby. So given how adamant Shannon was about it, you might be asking yourself, what’s the downside of the Paleo diet?
Well, one thing that Paleo diet enthusiasts tend to overlook is the fact that our Hunter gatherer ancestors weren’t models of pristine health. Our Paleolithic ancestors suffered from a number of parasites, infectious diseases, and also hardening of the arteries. While we can all agree that over processed foods aren’t good for us, the Paleo diet also forbids eating grains, legumes and dairy foods. So were Shannon Cooper’s efforts actually harmful? While the experts may have differing opinions on the Paleo diet, it’s obviously working well for Shannon.
She is full of energy and feeling great, so she made the decision that she would also raise her own daughter on the diet. In search of answers, Shannon Cooper went to consult with a doctor about the diet and whether it would be safe for a growing child. Unfortunately, not much information exists on the topic and her doctor cautioned her about putting her daughter on the diet.
Shannon decided that she would raise her daughter on the Paleo diet from day one, but she was forced to allow for one important exception to the rules of the diet, something that would make sure her daughter would receive all the nutrients that she needed to grow. Shannon indeed decided that she would put her daughter on the Paleo diet just like herself.
But the one exception that she would allow was breast milk. For the first few months of Grace’s life, Shannon decided to breastfeed her. Considering that babies can’t eat things like raw vegetables and meat, Shannon made a wise decision that you might think was pretty obvious. But not all parents who put their children on the Paleolithic diet necessarily allow for breast milk. Besides, for this exception, Shannon still needed to be briefed by her doctor on other serious risks.
Would she be ready to take that all in numerous recipes exist for Paleo DIY infant formulas, but according to experts, not all of them, if any, are safe for newborns. One nutritionist even went as far as to say that one DIY formula by celebrity chef Pete Evans can cause permanent damage and possibly result in death.
Luckily, Chef Evans was forced to change the recipe prior to his book’s publication, as it didn’t meet legal standards to be called formula, nor was it safe for infants. The original recipe contained extremely high levels of certain nutrients that babies simply cannot digest. Once weaning babies off breast milk, parents generally moved to the mass produced last jars of baby food we all know so well.
But baby Grace wasn’t going to be fed peas in a jar. Instead, her mother would be making her food. Shannon Cooper never believed that feeding Grace processed mush in a jar was an option. She felt that she wanted her daughter to receive her nutrients from natural and healthy foods that she prepared herself, so she knew exactly what she was feeding her daughter. The thing is, many parents Cook and prepare their baby’s food, but would Shannon’s Paleo ingredients be as healthy for baby Grace?
Shannon prepared Grace’s meals according to the Paleo diet guidelines, but even before that, she had been feeding her daughter healthy food even while she was still breastfeeding. She made sure to give her daughter small plates of vegetables and organic chicken.
The food that Shannon Cooper made was free of unnatural processing sugars and preservatives, which in itself is much healthier than other commercial baby foods available on the market. But what Shannon didn’t know was the unexpected effect that the diet would have on little Grace, Grace’s mother. Shannon regularly uploaded photos of her daughter and the meals that she prepared her on Instagram.
In one Photo, Grace can be seen happily chomping down on a piece of broccoli, a food that most other children would shy away from. By 13 months old, Grace was already eating meals that were much healthier than foods that adults eat. But one question remained. Was Grace getting all the nutrients that she needed? And what would the long term effects of the paleo diet have on a growing little girl?