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Thread: Benefits of infant cereal

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
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    Default Benefits of infant cereal

    I just wrote a post about a possible allergic reaction to the rice cereal that I've started my little guy on. Which got me thinking, what's the reason that it's recommended by a lot of health care professionals to start with single grain cereals, as a first food? A public health care nurse that I recently talked to said that it's now recommended to start with cereals, then meat, then veggies, then fruit. She said they've been seeing a lot of babies becoming anemic by the age of 1, becasue they're not getting enough iron in their diets, which has me a little worried about his iron intake if he doesn't eat the fortified cereal.

    Thoughts? How would he be if I just started him off with green veggies and pureed meats?
    Mommy to L - May 7, 07' , B - February 7, 09' , and R - August 18, 12'

  2. #2
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    Feb 2009
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    MI
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    Default Re: Benefits of infant cereal

    The added iron is why infant cereal is recommended but you can get iron from other places - someone here should have a great link of iron rich foods you can use.

    That said, DD has had rice cereal and loves it - she must be a carb-o-holic like her mom ! but I prefer other, natural iron sources for her.
    I'm Melissa, DD (01/12/2009) weaned at a little over 2 1/2 years

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
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    8,272

    Default Re: Benefits of infant cereal

    Baby cereal is usually recommended because they are iron fortified and an *easy* way to get iron into LO's diet.

    My DS never liked baby cereal & never liked being spoon fed. I think he had maybe 3 spoonfuls total of baby cereal.

    We did baby led solids (baby self-feeds) and concentrated on foods that were nutrient dense and also high in iron.

    Back with links (unless someone beats me to it).
    Lynn
    DS1: bf 7/2006 -> 4/2009; multiple food allergies
    DS2: bf 9/2009 -> ???
    ; multiple food allergies
    Breastmilk Donor - http://hmbana.org/index/donatemilk
    Click HERE to learn about baby led solids (BLS) / baby led weaning (BLW)

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Benefits of infant cereal

    Lynn
    DS1: bf 7/2006 -> 4/2009; multiple food allergies
    DS2: bf 9/2009 -> ???
    ; multiple food allergies
    Breastmilk Donor - http://hmbana.org/index/donatemilk
    Click HERE to learn about baby led solids (BLS) / baby led weaning (BLW)

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
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    8,272

    Default Re: Benefits of infant cereal

    Lynn
    DS1: bf 7/2006 -> 4/2009; multiple food allergies
    DS2: bf 9/2009 -> ???
    ; multiple food allergies
    Breastmilk Donor - http://hmbana.org/index/donatemilk
    Click HERE to learn about baby led solids (BLS) / baby led weaning (BLW)

  6. #6
    Join Date
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    Not around here as much :(
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    12,132

    Default Re: Benefits of infant cereal

    We never have done the infant cereals - none of the kiddos are anemic. I always had a "wait and see' attitute, in that if a problem arose, we'd handle it then. Preventative medicine is one thing but giving kids stuff that they don't need "just in case' is another
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  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
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    Default Re: Benefits of infant cereal

    sarah was anemic and it had more to do with her being born early then not eating fortified cereal.

    That iron is very hard for your body to absorb.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
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    1,081

    Default Re: Benefits of infant cereal

    Infant cereal is fortified with iron and easy to use. But babies have to eat quite a bit of it to get enough iron from it.

    Meat is a more natural source to get iron from - the baby doesn't need to eat as much of it as the cereal to get what they need and the iron is better absorbed from it. Liver is even better (baby animal liver that are grass fed).

    I posted a thread called World Health Organizations recommendations for complementary foods in this section - the document linked has a ton of info. I think is worth reading to understand infant nutrition and foods.
    Mommy to:

    Emmalynn Marie
    Born at 37 weeks on 12/22/06
    5lbs 1oz 19 1/2in

    Owen Charles
    Born at 29 wks 6 days on 01/17/09
    2lbs 14oz 15in
    In NICU for 2 months


  9. #9
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Posts
    71

    Default Re: Benefits of infant cereal

    We're doing BLS but we also do some cereal because Oscar loves it, and since I eat oatmeal, I figured that was something resembling "real" food (unlike purees) and I want him to get used to a variety of textures. Because of the iron issue, I do use the baby cereal version of oatmeal (Earth's Best Organic Whole Grain Oatmeal) which is iron-fortified, and I mix it with some fruit that I've mashed with a fork to be chunky (usually banana).

    We do a small amount of cereal and fruit for breakfast, then BLS for dinner. Everyone has different views about what is best for babies at this age, so I think you just have do your research and do what you think is best for your lo.
    We made it one year!
    Loving
    and blogging about it all here

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