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1454858 tn?1306787978

OT: great rice cereal debate

I posted things in the playgroup areas, but there isn't much acttivity there.  Response time is slow ( all the new moms are prob too busy ;)  )

Anyway,  When my now 6 yr old was 6 weeks old, I put rice cereal in her bottle with her formula.  I just used a little bit & she was a lot less fussy & slept a lot better.

Now I have a 7 week old, who I sometimes think I can't stuff enough formula in her.  She is a BIG eater & wants more quite frequently.  My doctor said to give her as much as she wants, but sometimes it is 6 ounces!  She eats every 3 - 4 hours.  Sometimes she will have a 4-5 oz feeding & then an hour later want more!  I do try the binkie to see if she just wants to suck.  No, this kid wants food.

My question is.... How many mothers out there used or still use rice cereal in the bottle with newborns??  I hear now experts say they shouldn't have it until they are about 4 months due to mainly digestive reasons.  I didn't know any of this information 6 yrs ago when I had my daughter.  Back then everyone (friends & family) told me to give it to her.  I still hear mothers who swear by it for a much happier baby & mommy (better nights)

How many of you do this or plan to???  what are your thoughts??
13 Responses
287246 tn?1318573663
Ahhh, well you will def get varying answers on this one.  I have never really had this problem myself.  I have always breastfed.  Not that that necessarily makes a difference in your question though.  But I do know myself.  If I had a baby that I just couldn't satisfy food wise, I'd give it a try.  I do remember with one of mine.  I had to start supplementing when she was like 4 months old because she wasn't gaining enough weight.  Someone did suggest I put cereal in her bottle to help her sleep better at night.  It didn't seem to do anything either way, so I didn't continue.  It didn't hurt her.  It just didn't do anything so I decided I wouldn't bother with an extra step that wasn't working anyway :)

I know that people will bring up digestive reasons as to why NOT to give the cereal right now.  But once upon a time, by the time the child was 2 month old, cereal was just given.  I think my biggest concern is that it might constipate your baby.  If you do decide to try the cereal, I would def only do a little bit and maybe try only at night.  I would then watch her very closely to make sure that she doesn't have any other digestive issues with it.  IDK...I don't have a lot of experience w/ the cereal thing so my advice is limited.

134578 tn?1546634665
Here is from another website:

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Although many grandmothers and neighbors may swear that a little cereal in their newborn's bottle helped him sleep better, the American Academy of Pediatrics does not recommend introducing cereal and other solid foods until four to six months of age. Before that age, young infants need only breastmilk or formula.

In the first couple of months of life, a newborn generally feeds every 2 hours. If you are breastfeeding, offer up to 10-15 minutes on each breast; for formula feeding, offer about 2-3 ounces at each feeding. As your newborn gets older, she will tend to eat more at each feeding. If your infant produces 6 wet diapers a day and is gaining weight regularly, then she usually is getting enough food calories. Discuss your infant's feeding and growth with her pediatrician at each check-up.

Once your infant is between four and six months of age, she may start showing signs of readiness for solid foods. These signs include being able to support her own head, having good tongue thrust (can push food out of her mouth) and showing interest in the foods you are eating. When you feel your baby is ready and your pediatrician gives the go ahead, you can then start feeding her rice cereal, by mixing the cereal flakes with her breastmilk or formula. The familiar taste will help her accept the new food and rice cereal tends to be less allergy-provoking than some other foods.

_________________________

If you do give rice cereal, don't give it yet.  And don't give it in the bottle, there is said to be a risk of the baby aspirating it into the lungs, and getting pneumonia.

Think of it this way -- rice is all carbohydrate.  Carbs burn off faster than protein, which means the baby gets hungry sooner, since some of the limited room in the baby's tummy (that would otherwise be full of protein) is being used instead by the emptier calories of the carbs.  Possibly the baby would sleep a little sooner if carbo-loaded, but it does not last as long as an all-protein diet.

I would certainly wait, and feed the rice cereal only on your doctor's specific recommendation.  It tastes nasty, also.  Your baby might prefer oatmeal, when the time comes.  :)
889551 tn?1416188083
I used rice cereal per my daughter's pediatrician. She has severe reflux and if the formula wasn't thickened, then the entire bottle would come up. She also had a milk allergy and was on special formula. I haven't had any problems out of using rice cereal with Lexi. She's a healthy weight and is able to keep her food down, so that's what we use. She's been on it since 4 weeks old and it doesn't seem to fill her belly totally full. Anyways, it doesn't seem normal to me for a seven week old to be eating that much. I would call your pediatrician or make an appt to have it addressed. They'd be able to better tell you what you should do.
1194973 tn?1385507504
I never put anything in my daughters bottle. Far too heavy on their little bellies to try and digest. If you really want to try a thicker formula, they make a formula that has added rice to it.
287246 tn?1318573663
My personal opinion is that all babies are different.  Nicole's post is a good example of when it has HELPED a baby that otherwise couldn't keep her food down.  

I would see what your ped says.  If they do have this formula w/ the rice added, might not be a bad idea to try.  But if it were really that bad, I doubt they would be adding it to formula.

I am certainly no expert, but again, I think all babies are different and can have different needs.  There are exceptions to the rules sometimes.

Good luck!
889551 tn?1416188083
They do make a formula with rice cereal already in it. It's called Enfamil AR and they sell it everywhere they sell regular formula. Unfortunately, we can't use this formula because Lexi has allergies and is just now able to tolerate soy.  She was on Alimentum for six months and is now on the soy and doing okay with it now. She can't go on regular formula for a while.  Enfamil AR is marketed for babies with reflux as it thickens in their bellies and allows them to keep their food down. It would have been ideal for us, but we have other issues to tend to in the feeding department. If Lexi hadn't had the rice cereal she would be severely underweight. She wasn't gaining adequately after my breast milk dried up and we switced to formula. It was like I said a combo of her allergy to the milk and the severe reflux.

All babies are different. I've heard where some reflux babies want to eat to soothe their throats. It might be something you should look into with your ped to see if she has reflux.
1035252 tn?1427231433
I used to be vehemently opposed to it because it's empty calories...but I know so many success stories that now I just have a neutral stand on it. I never did it with either of mine...my daughter, when she breastfed, would eat every 1 - 1/2 hours..and on the bottle, every 1 1/2-2...for months, day and night. My son ate every 2 hours during the day for the first 4 months as well....he couldn't seem to eat enough, but I knew that every bottle of formula was fuel for his little mind - the cereal wasn't. I tried it one evening hoping to get him some satisfaction (although he would go 4-6 hours at night from the very beginning) and he was screaming for hours after....so I waited until he was 7 months before he got his first rice cereal, whereas my daughter got her first rice cereal (in a bowl) at 4 months and did just fine.


But on the flip side...some babies, it helps. Does it hurt? not really, but it's not nutritional so if you CAN find another way, that's best USUALLY...but some babies just need it, ESPECIALLY those with reflux!
1454858 tn?1306787978
I don't think reflux is a problem.  At 7 weeks we have only had 3 big spit -ups.  I just can't seem to satisfy her sometimes.  Should she be eating so much???  I ALWAYS try her binkie to make sure it isn't just a sucking thing.

I swear she gives me the "hairy eyeball", glaring at me as if to say, "how dare you give me this dried up nipple.  I wan't food!"  ;)

She was 8 lbs 14 oz at birth.  3 weeks ago she was 10 lbs 13 oz.  I don't know if her being on the larger side makes any difference.
889551 tn?1416188083
Some babies have what you woul call "silent reflux." It never quite makes it out of their mouth, but sometimes you can hear it coming back up and see them swallow. Reflux may not be the culprit, I personally always feed on demand...even with a bottle. If it concerns you I would def speak to your ped. Otherwise if she's hungry I'd just feed her. But in my experience, it didn't really make her sleep better at night.
1194973 tn?1385507504
It's normal for some babies to eat more than others. My niece was eating 7 ounces every 1-2 hours. If she's bigger, it's also natural that she'll want more to satisfy her. If she's eating it all and not spitting the entire thing up, I'd feed her milk and not substitute.
1330108 tn?1333680904
I was told to give my daughter rice cereal at a young age for reflux and I refused because it is linked to a huge increase in obesity and I don't want my child to be at risk for that because of something i did. Instead i found natural remedies and I eliminated all dairy from my diet. Anyway to answer your questions I personally would not give my baby rice cereal especially at a young age especially in a bottle. When we started cereals I did oatmeal, MUCH healthier for her. They make baby oatmeal which is same consistency as the rice cereal. Do I think mommys are bad mommys for doing rice cereal? No but it is not a decision that I am willing to make to feed rice cereal. I also always feed on demand, no schedule just however much she wants when she wants. I breastfeed
Avatar universal

My son was a big eater too. It was non stop I would put a teaspoon or so in his bottle started about 3 weeks and he was fine. I put it in his bottle until he was off it when he turned 1


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