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Rice cereal- Yes or No? whats your opinion?
January 29, 2013 at 8:19 PM
Hello ladies! So I have a 4 month old baby boy who I'll admit loves to eat and lately the past couple weeks feel like I can't get him off my chest! Lol so my mother starting suggesting I feed him rice cereal to 'satisfy him" n that she fed it to me and my 3 brothers all at 3 months and he'll be fine blah blah. I'm kinda iffy about it, not sure if its something I want to do, spoke to his doc and he said it would be ok to start him on cereal too if I desired. Was wondering if any other mommies do/have feed cereal to your LOs or if u don't and what your reasons for choosing to or not too?


  • MommyO2-6631
    January 29, 2013 at 8:23 PM
    If you're bfing the iron in the boxed cereals can inhibit the absorption of iron from your milk and cause baby to be anemic. Also the aap suggests waiting until closer to 6 months. 4 months is a growth spurt and he'll likely return to his normal feeding habits in a week or so. And rice cereal does not equal sleeping better. It can backfire! Big time!
  • mollysmom328
    January 29, 2013 at 8:28 PM

    No cereal.  I felt it wasn't necessary (and yes, mine nursed all the time but did with food too)  It's a filler with no good nutrition for a baby.  I also wait until at least 6 months.

  • KylersMom8-16-7
    January 29, 2013 at 8:28 PM
    This! I'll post some other things that will help with the decision in another reply.

    Quoting MommyO2-6631:

    If you're bfing the iron in the boxed cereals can inhibit the absorption of iron from your milk and cause baby to be anemic. Also the aap suggests waiting until closer to 6 months. 4 months is a growth spurt and he'll likely return to his normal feeding habits in a week or so. And rice cereal does not equal sleeping better. It can backfire! Big time!

  • Junebaby18
    January 29, 2013 at 8:29 PM
    It has no nutritional value to it. All the iron in it is fake and if you're bf, the iron in it will make the iron in your milk to not absorb properly.
    Solids should never be given to a baby under 6 months as they still have an open gut and that could set him up to have allergies in the future.
    Cereal is empty calories and it will fill him up and not have enough room for the more nutritious breast milk.
  • KylersMom8-16-7
    January 29, 2013 at 8:29 PM
    Reasons for delaying solids

    Although some of the reasons listed here assume that your baby is breastfed or fed breastmilk only, experts recommend that solids be delayed for formula fed babies also.

    Delaying solids gives baby greater protection from illness. Although babies continue to receive many immunities from breastmilk for as long as they nurse, the greatest immunity occurs while a baby is exclusively breastfed. Breastmilk contains 50+ known immune factors, and probably many more that are still unknown. One study has shown that babies who were exclusively breastfed for 4+ months had 40% fewer ear infections than breastfed babies whose diets were supplemented with other foods. The probability of respiratory illness occurring at any time during childhood is significantly reduced if the child is fed exclusively breast milk for at least 15 weeks and no solid foods are introduced during this time. (Wilson, 1998) Many other studies have also linked the degree of exclusivity of breastfeeding to enhanced health benefits (see Immune factors in human milk).

    Delaying solids gives baby’s digestive system time to mature. If solids are started before a baby’s system is ready to handle them, they are poorly digested and may cause unpleasant reactions (digestive upset, gas, constipation, etc.). Protein digestion is incomplete in infancy. Gastric acid and pepsin are secreted at birth and increase toward adult values over the following 3 to 4 months. The pancreatic enzyme amylase does not reach adequate levels for digestion of starches until around 6 months, and carbohydrate enzymes such as maltase, isomaltase, and sucrase do not reach adult levels until around 7 months. Young infants also have low levels of lipase and bile salts, so fat digestion does not reach adult levels until 6-9 months.

    Delaying solids decreases the risk of food allergies. It is well documented that prolonged exclusive breastfeeding results in a lower incidence of food allergies (see Allergy References). From birth until somewhere between four and six months of age, babies possess what is often referred to as an “open gut.” This means that the spaces between the cells of the small intestines will readily allow intact macromolecules, including whole proteins and pathogens, to pass directly into the bloodstream.This is great for your breastfed baby as it allows beneficial antibodies in breastmilk to pass more directly into baby’s bloodstream, but it also means that large proteins from other foods (which may predispose baby to allergies) and disease-causing pathogens can pass right through, too. During baby’s first 4-6 months, while the gut is still “open,” antibodies (sIgA) from breastmilk coat baby’s digestive tract and provide passive immunity, reducing the likelihood of illness and allergic reactions before gut closure occurs. Baby starts producing these antibodies on his own at around 6 months, and gut closure should have occurred by this time also. See How Breast Milk Protects Newborns and The Case for the Virgin Gut for more on this subject.

    Delaying solids helps to protect baby from iron-deficiency anemia. The introduction of iron supplements and iron-fortified foods, particularly during the first six months, reduces the efficiency of baby’s iron absorption. Healthy, full-term infants who are breastfed exclusively for periods of 6-9 months have been shown to maintain normal hemoglobin values and normal iron stores. In one study (Pisacane, 1995), the researchers concluded that babies who were exclusively breastfed for 7 months (and were not give iron supplements or iron-fortified cereals) had significantly higher hemoglobin levels at one year than breastfed babies who received solid foods earlier than seven months. The researchers found no cases of anemia within the first year in babies breastfed exclusively for seven months and concluded that breastfeeding exclusively for seven months reduces the risk of anemia. See Is Iron-Supplementation Necessary? for more information.

    Delaying solids helps to protect baby from future obesity. The early introduction of solids is associated with increased body fat and weight in childhood. (for example, see Wilson 1998, von Kries 1999, Kalies 2005)

    Delaying solids helps mom to maintain her milk supply. Studies have shown that for a young baby solids replace milk in a baby’s diet – they do not add to baby’s total intake. The more solids that baby eats, the less milk he takes from mom, and less milk taken from mom means less milk production. Babies who eat lots of solids or who start solids early tend to wean prematurely.

    Delaying solids helps to space babies. Breastfeeding is most effective in preventing pregnancy when your baby is exclusively breastfed and all of his nutritional and sucking needs are satisfied at the breast.

    Delaying solids makes starting solids easier. Babies who start solids later can feed themselves and are not as likely to have allergic reactions to foods.
  • KylersMom8-16-7
    January 29, 2013 at 8:33 PM
    Infant sleep and bedtime cereal.

    Macknin ML, et al. Show all

    Am J Dis Child. 1989 Sep;143(9):1066-8.

    Department of Pediatrics, Cleveland Clinic Foundation, OH 44195-5045.

    Abstract We studied whether feeding infants rice cereal before bedtime promotes their sleeping through the night. One hundred six infants were randomly assigned to begin bedtime cereal feeding (1 tablespoon per ounce in a bottle) at 5 weeks or at 4 months of age. Caretakers recorded the infant's sleep from age 4 to 21 weeks for one 24-hour period per week. Sleeping through the night was defined as sleeping at least 8 consecutive hours, with the majority of time being between the hours of midnight and 6 AM. The results were also reviewed changing the requirement from 8 hours to 6 hours. There was no statistically significant trend or a consistent tendency of one group to have a higher proportion of sleepers than the other. Therefore, feeding infants rice cereal in the bottle before bedtime does not appear to make much difference in their sleeping through the night.
  • birthymom4
    January 29, 2013 at 8:34 PM

    Babies eat because they need real nutrition...not infant junkfood
  • KylersMom8-16-7
    January 29, 2013 at 8:35 PM
    Risk Factors for Shorter Infant Sleep Duration

    Early introduction of solid food, television viewing, and maternal prenatal depression were associated with shorter sleep duration.

    To determine early-life risk factors associated with shorter sleep duration during infancy, investigators followed 1676 pregnant women at eight obstetrical offices in Massachusetts until their children's second birthdays. Mothers reported average 24-hour sleep duration during the past month for their infants at ages 6 months, 1 year, and 2 years.

    In multivariable regression models adjusted for sociodemographic factors, maternal prenatal depression (measured on a validated screening tool), introduction of solid foods at age <4 months, and infant television viewing were significant risk factors for shorter sleep duration at age 1 year (0.36 fewer hours/day for maternal prenatal depression, 0.39 fewer hours/day for early introduction of solid food, and 0.11 fewer hours/day for each 1 hour of television viewed per week) and at age 2 years (0.38, 0.22, and 0.09 fewer hours/day, respectively). Number of household members who smoked and breast-feeding status were not associated with sleep duration.
  • KylersMom8-16-7
    January 29, 2013 at 8:37 PM
    What’s wrong with infant cereal?

    So glad you asked!

    It’s not traditional.

    In the Food Renegade’s nutritional philosophy, tradition has weight. After all, we’ve survived anywhere from 7,000 to 77,000 generations on this planet (depending on whose science you believe). If we didn’t know how to adequately nourish our children all that time, how did we even get here?

    And guess what? Traditional cultures didn’t (and don’t) feed their young babies infant cereal. Among the few cultures who fed their babies a gruel of grains, their practice radically differed from what we do today. First, they only introduced the gruel after the baby was more than a year old. And second, they ensured that the gruel was mildly fermented by soaking the grains for 24 hours or more.

    Babies can’t digest it.

    In order to digest grains, your body needs to make use of an enzyme called amylase. Amylase is the enzyme responsible for splitting starches. And, guess what? Babies don’t make amylase in large enough quantities to digest grains until after they are a year old at the earliest. Sometimes it can take up to two years. You see, newborns don’t produce amylase at all. Salivary amylase makes a small appearance at about 6 months old, but pancreatic amylase (what you need to actually digest grains) is not produced until molar teeth are fully developed! First molars usually don’t show up until 13-19 months old, on average.

    Undigested grains wreak havoc on your baby’s intestinal lining. It can throw off the balance of bacteria in their gut and lead to lots of complications as they age including: food allergies, behavioral problems, mood issues, and more.

    What does this mean? Don’t feed your baby grains (or even highly starchy foods), until all of their first molars have emerged. This means no rice cereals, no Cheerios, no Goldfish, no oatmeal, no infant crackers. It means that when you sit down with them at a restaurant, you shouldn’t placate them with the free rolls.

    Feeding your baby grains displaces other, more important nutrients.

    If you feed your baby cereal or other grains, you’re doing more than simply sticking them with an indigestible food. You’re feeding them an indigestible food in place of something more nutrient-dense. You’re feeding them something their body can’t really use and starving them of the nutrients they need to grow a healthy brain, nervous system, and bone structure.
  • MalakbelLacuna
    January 29, 2013 at 9:27 PM
    it is void of nutrition. It is best not to start babies on any solids before six months.


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