Infant Rice Cereal by Tonya
(Tempe, AZ, United States – Professional Nanny and Foster Parent)
I have personally been in childcare of some kind for over 20 years. I have dealt with birth to Kindergarten many times over and have mostly cared for infants. I have overseen and even counseled parents in baby’s first foods. I have a tendency to believe in the old fashioned “give rice cereal” theory. I have cared for over 100 babies between daycare nurseries, nannying, and foster care. Not once did any of these children suffer consequences that were negative. They were normal and healthy, and their pediatricians often remarked at their healthy appetite. Not one of the babies suffered from allergy or from constipation. The real key is to wait until the baby is between 5-6 months old before introducing any type of solid food.
(They are babies for only a short time, and I think that we should not be rushing the baby to eat solids. Enjoy them as you feed the bottle for the first 5-6 months, then, if you have enjoyed and cuddled them while feeding the bottle, you will have a much happier eater from the highchair. Don’t rush it!)
I enjoy the feeding time whether from the bottle or the spoon and when the baby eats in a good mood, the food will digest easier.
Have you ever had a stressful day at work and your tummy hurts that night after dinner? Don’t blame the food source! Stress plays a huge part in a body’s digestive system…it’s the same for the baby. If you are stressed out as to what, how, when, where, etc. that a baby eatings habits are concerned or if you are stressed out about a child’s eating habits at the table, then you are more apt to see the child’s digestive system up in knots no matter what foods are given to them.
As I mentioned above, I have even had foster infants in my care that when they came to me they were malnourished and fussy. It took me 3-5 days in each situation under a pediatricians care daily to turn the tide, and I did it with feeding…you guessed it…rice cereal.
All of my babies that were mentioned above are now very healthy children, teens, and adults themselves with good eating habits. None of them have turned out to have any oversion to healthy meats, vegetables, fruits, dairy, and grains. Some of them now have their own children and feed them just as I fed, also, no problems there either!
I must say, though, that as I said above, these children were all under a pediatricians watch. ANY baby started on ANY solid SHOULD ALWAYS be under a pediatricians care and watchful eye to check for any inbalances or the WIC Government Assistance for low income families also helps with nutrition issues for ages birth to Kindergarten. Either of these options should be taken, and always watch for abnormal occurances in your baby or child when giving any type of new food for allergic reaction.