Kellie Martin explains how she feeds Maggie

11/30/2007 at 04:37 PM ET

In the latest issue of People, actress Kellie Martin, 32, explains how she feeds her daughter Margaret ‘Maggie’ Heather, 13 months on Tuesday.

I try to cook everything myself. That way, I don’t throw away any containers and I know exactly what she eats. It doesn’t have to be time consuming. I steam vegetables and freeze pureed portions in ice cube trays. I pop them out the night before for next day’s lunch. It’s easy, healthy, and Maggie loves it.

Favorites are zucchini, butternut squash, pureed sweet potatoes and pear oatmeal muffins.

[I feed her] 100% organic food, whole grains, and absolutely no sugar. I hope if I give her a good start, she will make healthy choices later in life. She loves when we put on music and cook together.


Source: People, Dec. 10th issue, p. 124

Photo by Christa Renee.

204003488Maggie sits in a Svan high chair in cherry ($250).

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mary on

Life with no sugar is soooooooooooooo boring..

Pam on

But Mary, there’s really no reason a child that age needs sugar. All my son had at that age was some of his birthday cake and occasionally some diluted juice.

I applaud Kellie – I stopped making my own food when my son was about 10 months. I agree with her that I liked knowing EXACTLY what he was eating.

Maria on

Pam – You are right, there is no reason that kids need sugar, but as long as portions and frequency are appropriate, there is no reason they can’t have a little bit here and there either.

madison on

Actually, sugar is in just about everything we eat with the exception of water and meat. Sugar is in fruits, vegetables, dairy products, grains etc. I’m all for promoting a healthy diet, encouraging healthy choices later on etc – but the ‘absolutely no sugar’ thing isn’t quite right.

m on

Wow, my son is 10 months old and will no longer eat baby food or let me feed him. She must have a mellow baby who will eat puree. I agree with Kelli Martin but I wouldn’t freak out if he drank juice or ate a cookie. So many mothers are fanatical about these things. Most days I would be happy if he ate anything without a fuss.

sarawara on

We eat all organic/ whole foods, too. My kids are the least picky eaters I know. They beg for fruits and vegetables. I grind grains and bake bread every morning. We have almost no meat and absolutely no sugar (unless it’s honey).

Honestly, on the few times I’ve let them have sweets (birthday parties for friends, etc.) their personality was 180 degrees different; my sweet boys became monsters who couldn’t control their emotions. They’d both suffer from ADD problems if they ate sugar.

They breastfed for over a year, and ate some purees between 10-12 mos. but wouldn’t eat any purees after that; they wanted finger food.

The 22 month old who stays with us while her mommy works still eats only purees. She doesn’t swallow well. I think each kid is different with when they are ready for different textures. I think the important thing is that she’s eating pureed fruits and vegetables which is healthier than most snacks marketed to children.

lis on

Personally I think a good balance between the two is the ideal way to go — not talking about Kellie’s child (she’s quite young) but some of the older ones mentioned in the comments. It can get frustrating with either extreme when the child becomes older.

Not all of us have the ability to make all of our food from scratch, but it sure is nice to be able to appreciate it when we can have it. I’ve met too many people who were raised solely on processed food and they have no taste for homemade foods.. but there’s nothing wrong with eating a healthy diet and having some sugar here and there or packaged food either.

nicolie on

While I commend Kellie on wanting to teach her daughter healthy eating habits, she should also keep in mind how this will affect her socially as well. Nobody wants to be the “carrot kid” at birthday parties (the ones who bring their own bags of carrots because they can’t have birthday cake). Plus, would she still have time to do all of this steaming, pureeing, freezing, and spoon-feeding if she had, say, a 2-year-old and a 4-year-old as well?

J on

Nicole do you know anyone who makes their kids bring veggies to a party to eat instead of cake and a few goodies? Just because the baby is eating veggies and fruits now mostly, doesn’t mean she wont be allowed to indulge in a few goodies now and then.

Plus, a two and four year old is old enough to feed him/herself. 🙂

jen on

Maggie is wearing a Ralph Lauren dress.

Mimi on

I think that it’s great to feed your children healthy (I rarely let my one-year-old have sugar), but not every woman has TIME for it! I work a full time job, then go directly to nursing school, and by the time I get home at 10 p.m., the LAST thing I’m going to do is steam vegetables, puree them, and blah blah blah! And you know what? My daughter is a great eater, is healthy, and likes to eat her (canned)veggies and non-organic fruits.

Good for you, moms who have the time for this…moms who don’t? Don’t feel bad about it. Our babies are fine, too.

brannon on

J – funny you should ask that. Was at a party earlier today where there were 3 (out of about 15) children who had bags of veggies with them to eat when the other kids had cupcakes. One was an allergy and the other two parents were just anti-sugar. Additionally, as a teacher, you’d be surprised how many kids must do this! I’m all about keeping sugar from my son (for my own sanity) but I definitely know where the “carrot kid” term came from and will not subject him to that. TO each their own ….

kay on

madison, “no sugar” is just shorthand for “no added sugar”, which most packaged/processed foods have a ton of. I would think that should have been obvious.

madeline28 on

As a child psychologist, I can assure you that, contrary to popular belief and common myth, kids don’t get ADHD from eating too much sugar. It’s a deeper problem and we must not throw the term around like you did.

daisybug on

I don’t ever really remember having that much sugar as a kid, except holidays. I applaud Kelly as well for having her child grow up right. It really does make a difference if you help your child learn at an early start how to eat right.

Later in life her child will be able to make good decisions and be able to fall back on healthy foods more than depending on bad foods.

And I agree, just because Kelly is feeding Maggie healthy foods, doesn’t mean that she won’t be eating sweets when she’s older 🙂

sinclair on

“Actually, sugar is in just about everything we eat with the exception of water and meat. Sugar is in fruits, vegetables, dairy products, grains etc. I’m all for promoting a healthy diet, encouraging healthy choices later on etc – but the ‘absolutely no sugar’ thing isn’t quite right. “

I think she is referring to REFINED/processed sugar. I’m sure she’s intelligent enough and aware that sugar is in all foods.

Sami on

Madison- I think by “no sugar” Kellie probably means nothing with any added sweetener. You can see from the specific things she mentions feeding him that she doesn’t seem to have an issue with sugars in whole foods.

Although I actually do know someone who not only didn’t give her son any food with added sweetener but also no fruit until he was over 2 years old. The father was very obese and she was worried her son would develop a sweet tooth. That seems a little extreme to me.

Southern girl on

Well…since we are on the subject of sugar :-)…
I have three kids…two of mine can have a “sugary snack” and be ok as long as it’s in moderation, my middle child, however, goes bonkers even with just a little sugar intake…weather you want to give your kids cake, veggies, whatever…I think it’s each parents choice, but…I used to help out @ my son’s school and there was a child who brought cookies, chips, and chocolate EVERY DAY for lunch…no sandwich, soup, or anything remotely healthy…he also got ice cream money EVERY day…so like I said, it’s each parent’s choice…but I think those kinds of situations are on the verge of neglect…putting no effort into your child’s nutrition is neglectful, imo.
Anyway, I commend Kellie for making her own food…wish I had the time & patience for it!
That baby girl of hers is adorable!

Meeshelle on

I wonder if Kellie feeds her daughter strictly 100% organic foods because of her own sister’s death due to Lupus. Women and girls are more likely to be diagnosed with the disease. Genetics play a role too. However, studies have shown that an organic diet may help change that. I found more interesting facts about this by simply googling lupus and your diet. Definitely makes me want to eat more healthfully…especially with the holidays nearing!! xox

hkdiaz on

I’m all for eating healthy, but there is a middle ground. I know lots of kids who were raised on “absolutely no sugar” and either went buck wild sneaking around eating it, or who developed an unnatural fixation on it as they grew up…you always want what you can’t have!

madison on

I made the comment above that the ‘no sugar’ part wasn’t right since there are sugars in just about everything we eat. That comment seemed to annoy several people. While that was not my intent, I would like to admit now that I get annoyed when people make sweeping statements like “I am on a no carb diet” or “My child is on a sugar-free diet” because they aren’t true and they mislead others to thinking that carbs/sugars are the enemy, which is just not true. That is why I made the comment. They are our fuel. There are good carbs/sugars and bad carbs/sugars. And its not right to assume that everyone knows that – because many people don’t.

breezde on

I was anti sugar with my daughter when she was that age too but it can’t last forever. She has a raging sweet tooth even though I was stirring baby food into plain yogurt until she was 2. Now we still don’t keep any candy or cookies in the house (or chips or anything else too tempting, it’s not just about sugar) but I don’t freak out when she has some candy somewhere and she definitely gets birthday cake! I think the most important thing to do is teach them to like natural sugars like fruit and to read labels and avoid the things with HFCS etc.

Jaclyn on

To each his or her own, right? I love the idea of making baby food from scratch, but not everyone has the time for it. I will at least for baby #1 for the first year while I’m on mat. leave, but not everyone is that lucky.

My only other comment, is that it has been proven that eating healthier with less processed foods & refined sugar does help to alleviate the symptoms of ADD, ADHD, & autism spectrum disorders. I don’t think Sara meant to say that the food was the cause, but rather could be a trigger for some children. 🙂

Cindy on

How adorable is this baby girl, I ask you? Wow. Lucky Kellie.

On the sugar/baby issue? She is doing her daughter the greatest service by starting her out on a healthy lifestyle. If Maggie(love the old-fashioned names)sticks to this course she will be a healthier adult. Let’s not forget that there is a huge problem in this country right now concerning childhood obesity.

Great job, Kellie!!

Rebecca on

That’s an interesting thought Meeshelle, that could very well be why she’s so interested in her child’s diet (not to mention with the childhood obesity epidemic going on.)

I find a lot of the negative comments on here to be interesting as well. It seems to me that a few people that have commented feel slighted in some way because Kellie is talking about what she chooses to do for her child. Just because she is willing, and able, to do more for her child than you are doesn’t mean that you should get all prickly about it.

Making baby food with an older child isn’t something that’s soooooo difficult. Get the older child involved! Steaming veggies isn’t that hard, you can do it in the microwave! You can set aside a few hours a month and make a whole month’s worth of baby food. It’s not that time consuming or hard. It seems that we as a society are used to the mainstream baby food in jars and anyone that dares deviate from that norm is weird or obsessed.

Kudos to Kellie for being so vigilant of her child’s diet!

NB on

She is totally right. Every pediatrician I have ever spoken to has said no sugar (if any) before 2. In case none of you are aware of what sugar does I will give you the low down. Sugar causes inflammation both internally and externally. It is one of the main reasons many people age poorly because it causes the skin to lose elasticity, sag and subsequently wrinkle. Sugar is highly addictive and causes internal chaos. It harms our organs, disrupts our hormones, it can lead to diabetes, heart disease and more. It gives us highs and lows and then leaves people begging for more and that is only the beginning. This is why it can be so disruptive to young children. Consider their body weight and metabolism, very scary. They don’t drink tea, coffee or soda so why harm your kids with this poison. Sugar in either refined or unrefined (turbanado) form is harmful. Try getting your kids used to fruit, particularly berries. Much better in the long run.

Audrey on

I remember watching Oprah and seeing a little 3 year old girl watching her weight and diet because she didn’t want to get “fat”, she would go as far as pointing out fat people on the street and saying how ugly they were.

We don’t know if Kellie means no sugar at all, or no added sugar, but I think a little sugar in moderation would not hurt a child at all, I think it would be so very cruel to take a child to a birthday party and not let them eat any sweets. All I am saying that I have had weight problems all my life and I wish my parents would have moderated what I ate more as a child. But you don’t have to be a health freak to be healthy.

Renee on

Good for Kellie and I’ll be honest…I don’t see the problem here.*Sign* Will people ever decide that not everyone parents the same and be okay with that? Just because Kellie doesn’t want her daughter eating cakes,etc. doesn’t make her a bad parent. In fact her daughter will probably thank her later when she has good health. I think some people are being overdramatic about this…

Christina on

Oh my word, is that not the cutest picture ever?!? Both Kellie and Maggie are adorable there!

Jan McDonald on

Kelli – I was watching Face on the Milk Carton – an old movie you made and there’s a place in it when the mother is showing her a scrapbook of pics when she (the part you played was younger) and the pictures are exactly like ones I have of my daughter at that age. It’s the actual picture. Why is this and would you please let me know where these pictures came from – please respond