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Is Rice cereal good for babies?

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 
When, if ever, is it ok to give my son rice cereal? He is 10 weeks. I have read that it is ok to start at about 6 months. is this true?
post #2 of 8
I prefer to skip the rice cereal as I don't believe that it has much to offer (either in nutrition or food experience). If iron levels are a concern (like in babies who weren't ebf) then I'd rather go with an iron rich food. Dd's first foods were things like chicken and beef. We also delayed solids for quite awhile so it wasn't until 7 or 8 months or so until she had any solid food and at that point it was very small quantities. Since she was so old the purees were of very little interest to her (I doubt rice cereal would have been either).

Dd most just ate what we ate, spices and all. She's been my least picky eater (with ds we followed all the usual mainstream type advice and I have a hard time getting him to eat a variety of things - even at almost 5 years old).
post #3 of 8
6 months is when you can start feeding solids (some say 4 months but 6 is better) I skipped the cereal and went straight for veggies and fruit.
post #4 of 8
no, rice cereal is not good for babies.

If you use the search option, you should find other helpful discussions on just this. There are several reasons as to why it's less than ideal - including from a digestion standpoint.
post #5 of 8
I gave my little one rice cereal but not for long. In my opinion it's just an uneccesary filler. I eventually got rid of the cereals and went to veggies, homemade broths, and other nutrient dense foods.

It's exciting to start feeding your baby "real" food but my best advice...and in the harsh words of my mom over the phone one night..."you kids feed your babies way too soon, 6 months is way too early if they're not even interested...just wait until she wants it"

I followed her advice and started feeding my little one at 9.5 months -- when she wanted it.
post #6 of 8
The iron in all commercially available rice cereal blocks the absorption of the lactiferron (iron) in your breastmilk (it does have a small amount, but it's so absorbable!), so rice cereal is terrible for babies. Both my girls played with a bit of food off and on from 8 months, till getting serious about eating around 11 and 12 months. If you're way into rice cereal in 6 months or so, there are Japanese recipes that cook brown rice for 8+ hours, but meat, yogurt, avocados and other high protein goodies are what we started with.
post #7 of 8
The standard mainstream advice is to start with baby cereal at six months. The argument is that the iron is necessary for babies. This was true thirty years go and more, when scientists hadn't yet figured out how to get absorbable iron into formula, and babies were only very rarely breastfed in this country. It's really not true anymore. Breastmilk has less iron, but it is in an highly absorbable form. Other than the iron, rice cereal is mostly just starchy filler with some synthetic vitamins added. And there's evidence that grain foods fed too early are not healthy for the gut.

It is true that it is safe to introduce solid foods around six months, but many babies wait even longer, and that's fine and probably best. And once you do begin, fruits, vegetables, and foods high in healthy fats and protein are healthier options.

Our favorite first foods: ripe banana mashed with some breastmilk, or chunks of very soft ripe banana that baby can pick up, applesauce, ripe avocado, egg yolk, baked pears spiced with cinnamon, plain unsweetened yogurt, sweet potatoes.

If you really must use cereal, try to find a whole-grain version, or just puree fresh cooked rice and mix it with breastmilk. Less processed.
post #8 of 8
With my 1st son I went by the book on EVERYTHING. On the day he turned 6 months I started him on rice cereal. My 2nd son was a totally different story. That' when I got really involved with MDC. He started on actual REAL solid foods around 8 months. He got chunks of banana, chunks of cooked sweet potato, chunks of boiled apple, chunks of avacado. In terms of colds/flu's he's defenitely been my healthiest of my two children.

So yeah, 2nd son never had rice cereal, 1st son did but if I could have a do-over, I would've totally nixed the rice cereal and started finger foods when he was ready.
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