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Why is Rice cereal SO BAD?

post #1 of 54
Thread Starter 
We've just recently started ds on rice cereal- organic whole grain brown rice. I was going to wait till he was a bit older- he's 4 1/2 mnths but he's so ready to "eat" now.:

He loves it (even just mixed w/h2o) and doesn't spit it back out. We've noticed that when we give him it right before bed he goes down so much easier and sleeps more soundly- something we were having issues with. He still nurses to sleep the same amount of time, he just is less restless after falling asleep.

As you can see in my sig I am not a newbie here and I did start all my other dcs on rice cereal at about 4-5 mths (per dr's rec) and none of them have food issues and they all have varing body types now and then. But I'd never heard of rice cereal as being bad for babes till I read it here a few months ago.

So why is it bad? and what is your OP on should I stop and switch to whole (mashed) friuts and veggies till 9 months or older? I am not going to stop all together because it seems to be helping his sleep, he's so much happier and its only once a day. Oh he is BFed.

TIA
post #2 of 54
First- all medical organizations say nothing but breastmilk (or its replacement) until 6 months now. So I would not be feeding ANYTHING else yet.

Second- is baby sitting unassisted? Lost all tongue thrust? Grabs food and puts it in their own mouth? Those are all readiness signs that I would want to see met before starting solids.

Third- when spoon feeding purees and baby cereals adults spoon faster than baby would put it in (obviously) This puts more food in than they are really ready for.

Fourth- solids shouldn't be used to answer hunger or fill the belly in the first year- that's what breastmilk (or its substitute) is for. At a year 75% of nutrition should still be breastmilk.

Fifth- what solids ARE for in the first year is introduction to new tastes and textures. Rice cereal tastes like little and has little texture.



-Angela
post #3 of 54
What Angela said! I think for me a biggie the self-feeding aspect. Besides any of the downsides to rice cereal being a first food, it's nearly impossible for a 4.5 month old to spoon feed themself. That right there would tell me he's not ready -- and when he was, I would offer small pieces of whole foods.
post #4 of 54

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Edited by GoestoShow - 12/10/10 at 6:22pm
post #5 of 54
Babies guts don't seal until sometime around 4-6 months of age. So, until 6 months, no solid food should be introduced as it can lead to other health issues down the road.

Rice cereal (most) is fortified with inorganic iron. This iron is not easily absorbed (estimates are around 4%) and it blocks the absorption of iron and other nutrients from breastmilk.

Grains require amylase to be digested. The human body does not start producing amylase until 18-24 months. Therefore, any grains can be hard on their body to digest. Breastmilk does contain small amounts of amylase, but this is to aid the baby in digesting the milk, not additional food.

Grains are also coated in phytic acid because they are seeds that are meant to be consumed by animals, survive in their digestive tract, be pooped out, and then grow. Phytic acid is an anti-nutrient that is hard on the body and keeps it from being able to digest and absorb the nutrients in grains. Unless grains are properly soaked or sprouted, the phytic acid remains in place. Baby cereal is not properly soaked or sproated.

Before Gerber came to be, no one would have thought that feeding rice cereal would be a good idea. It came along with the marketing for formula. Substitutes for real nutrition (breastmilk or whole foods) are never as good.

Solid food in a baby that young is taking the place of breastmilk. Babies go through a growth spurt around this age and if their need for additional food is met with solid food instead of increased nursing, don't expect your supply to keep up with his growing and changing needs.

That's my 2 cents...
post #6 of 54
That is fascinating, Evie's Mama! I knew introducing grains wasn't a good idea until much later, but I didn't understand the science behind it. Thanks
post #7 of 54
Thread Starter 
Thank you for your replies- Evie's mom that's the info i was looking for on rice cereal.

I will be switching to fruits and veggies then. and leaving grains and such out. I have not doubt my milk supply will be fine as well as my lo. I have bfed 5 other dc and had no difficulties till much later when they'd go on strikes. and yes I know he is ready i trust my experience and babe on this one.I was just wondering why exactly rice cereal and cereals in general were bad for los.

I am not asking to debate if he's ready for them or not- I'm experienced enough to know when babe is ready and have successfully started 5 other los at around the same age, some of which weren't and I stopped and waited awhile for and the others were fine. he's ready and will eat anything you give him- even whole foods- he'll take "bites" off soft foods and chew and swallow. this is ready. yes he can sit unassited, has lost the thrust reflex, and we wait for him to open between bites and he leans into it.

And thank you again.
post #8 of 54
Have you checked out www.wholesomebabyfood.com ? It has alot of great ideas for good first foods. We started my older son with avocado which is alot more nutritious then rice cereal. We waited on grains until 8 months (though we didn't start at all until 6 months).
post #9 of 54
We gave our daughter some organic rice cereal at 9 months. I wasn't going to do it at all but everyone in the house was ill and it had probiotics in it .. she had a slight fever and a runny nose so I gave in to DP. She loves it. And honestly, I won't give her anything I won't try myself. We both tried it and honestly, if she doesn't finish it, I do.

Anyhow, she grabs it with her fingers and sucks it right off I do spoon it out for her because she does seem to like both options. But she tells me when she's ready for another spoonful. She will hit her tray (I'm not sure that "hit" is the best word but neither is "pat") or move her mouth forward, saying she is ready. If she doesn't want the spoonful she will either move her head away or not open her mouth.

Also, by the time we got the cereal, she was already trying solids. She could already pick them up by herself and put them in her mouth and eat them. She loves trying new foods. And I don't make the cereal an everyday thing. It's a once or twice a week thing. Maybe. But her rice milk? That she has everyday. She loves it. And it's nice and cold.
post #10 of 54
Quote:
Originally Posted by racie0417 View Post
Have you checked out www.wholesomebabyfood.com ? It has alot of great ideas for good first foods.
Nothing to add to this thread, but what a great link :-) And some other really great information in here too!!
post #11 of 54
Quote:
Originally Posted by Drummer's Wife View Post
That right there would tell me he's not ready -- and when he was, I would offer small pieces of whole foods.
Hi, Why would you offer whole foods before rice cereal? ( I'm learning to prep for my 4 mo DS future with food

Penny
post #12 of 54
Quote:
Originally Posted by Penny4Them View Post
Hi, Why would you offer whole foods before rice cereal? ( I'm learning to prep for my 4 mo DS future with food

Penny
It's really hard for babies to feed themselves rice cereal. AND food in the first year is for experimenting with taste and texture- since rice cereal has little of either, why bother?

-Angela
post #13 of 54
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Penny4Them View Post
Hi, Why would you offer whole foods before rice cereal? ( I'm learning to prep for my 4 mo DS future with food

Penny


This is the info I really liked when I posted this thread in the 1st place! Told me the WHY?


Quote:
Originally Posted by Evie's Mama View Post
Babies guts don't seal until sometime around 4-6 months of age. So, until 6 months, no solid food should be introduced as it can lead to other health issues down the road.

Rice cereal (most) is fortified with inorganic iron. This iron is not easily absorbed (estimates are around 4%) and it blocks the absorption of iron and other nutrients from breastmilk.

Grains require amylase to be digested. The human body does not start producing amylase until 18-24 months. Therefore, any grains can be hard on their body to digest. Breastmilk does contain small amounts of amylase, but this is to aid the baby in digesting the milk, not additional food.

Grains are also coated in phytic acid because they are seeds that are meant to be consumed by animals, survive in their digestive tract, be pooped out, and then grow. Phytic acid is an anti-nutrient that is hard on the body and keeps it from being able to digest and absorb the nutrients in grains. Unless grains are properly soaked or sprouted, the phytic acid remains in place. Baby cereal is not properly soaked or sproated.

Before Gerber came to be, no one would have thought that feeding rice cereal would be a good idea. It came along with the marketing for formula. Substitutes for real nutrition (breastmilk or whole foods) are never as good.

Solid food in a baby that young is taking the place of breastmilk. Babies go through a growth spurt around this age and if their need for additional food is met with solid food instead of increased nursing, don't expect your supply to keep up with his growing and changing needs.

That's my 2 cents...
post #14 of 54
Babies guts don't seal until sometime between 4 and 6 months of age, sometimes a little bit longer. This means that SOME babies are ready at 4 or 4.5 months old, as evidenced by the ability to sit unassisted, loss of the tongue thrust reflex, etc.
post #15 of 54
For what it's worth, dd (11mo.) and I both LOVE cream of rice and cream of wheat for breakfast. DD started eating solids at one week shy of 6 months. She started with avocado and banana and all that jazz for all the reasons already stated above. She can use a spoon on her own now (as long as I load it) and she regularly eats organic cream of brown rice. Sometimes with fruit in it sometimes with goat yogurt, sometimes plain.

All this to say that part of learning and experimenting with textures should include mushy bland stuff. I don't claim it should be the only food or substitute for BM but I don't think it needs to be completely avoided as a rule either.

post #16 of 54
Quote:
Originally Posted by Evie's Mama View Post
Grains require amylase to be digested. The human body does not start producing amylase until 18-24 months. Therefore, any grains can be hard on their body to digest. Breastmilk does contain small amounts of amylase, but this is to aid the baby in digesting the milk, not additional food.

Grains are also coated in phytic acid because they are seeds that are meant to be consumed by animals, survive in their digestive tract, be pooped out, and then grow. Phytic acid is an anti-nutrient that is hard on the body and keeps it from being able to digest and absorb the nutrients in grains. Unless grains are properly soaked or sprouted, the phytic acid remains in place. Baby cereal is not properly soaked or sproated.
.

Evie's Mama - I'd like to read more about this. Could you let me know the source for the information on grains? Thanks!
post #17 of 54
Quote:
Originally Posted by paulamc View Post
Evie's Mama - I'd like to read more about this. Could you let me know the source for the information on grains? Thanks!
We're mostly Traditional Foodies, so a lot of my research comes from Nourishing Traditions by Sally Fallon and the Weston A. Price Foundation. Although I will put it out there right now that I DO NOT agree with a lot of what they say about feeding babies, I just agree with their research about food itself (which is where the info on grains comes from). For feeding babies, I prefer Real Food for Mother and Baby by Nina Planck.
post #18 of 54
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ruthla View Post
Babies guts don't seal until sometime between 4 and 6 months of age, sometimes a little bit longer. This means that SOME babies are ready at 4 or 4.5 months old, as evidenced by the ability to sit unassisted, loss of the tongue thrust reflex, etc.
Hi, What do you mean by "seal"?
post #19 of 54
Quote:
Originally Posted by Penny4Them View Post
Hi, What do you mean by "seal"?
I have read about this on kellymom I believe. As I understand it the intestines "leak," until they are sealed, around 6 months. That is, bits of food matter that should not escape the intestines escape, and the body defends itself against what it perceives as a foreign body with an immune response. Thereafter, the body may continue to recognize that food as an allergen.
post #20 of 54


 

Quote:
Originally Posted by CrunchyChristianMama View Post

Babies guts don't seal until sometime around 4-6 months of age. So, until 6 months, no solid food should be introduced as it can lead to other health issues down the road.

Rice cereal (most) is fortified with inorganic iron. This iron is not easily absorbed (estimates are around 4%) and it blocks the absorption of iron and other nutrients from breastmilk.

Grains require amylase to be digested. The human body does not start producing amylase until 18-24 months. Therefore, any grains can be hard on their body to digest. Breastmilk does contain small amounts of amylase, but this is to aid the baby in digesting the milk, not additional food.

Grains are also coated in phytic acid because they are seeds that are meant to be consumed by animals, survive in their digestive tract, be pooped out, and then grow. Phytic acid is an anti-nutrient that is hard on the body and keeps it from being able to digest and absorb the nutrients in grains. Unless grains are properly soaked or sprouted, the phytic acid remains in place. Baby cereal is not properly soaked or sproated.

Before Gerber came to be, no one would have thought that feeding rice cereal would be a good idea. It came along with the marketing for formula. Substitutes for real nutrition (breastmilk or whole foods) are never as good.

Solid food in a baby that young is taking the place of breastmilk. Babies go through a growth spurt around this age and if their need for additional food is met with solid food instead of increased nursing, don't expect your supply to keep up with his growing and changing needs.

That's my 2 cents...

I'm waiting to introduce grains to my LO too. I have heard a lot of this info before and it makes sense to me, but I'm looking for some research that says this to show to my mom and MIL who are asking about it. Especially the part about not being able to properly digest grains until 18-24 months! Anyone know where to find info about this? I've actually found some doctors on the web saying quite the opposite- that rice cereal is quite easy for babies to digest, but I don't buy it.

 

Thanks!
 

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