How early to start baby on cereal?

Tausha - posted on 02/27/2010 ( 90 moms have responded )

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My daughter is almost 2 months, and shes been eating so much formula that we started her on just a little bit of rice cereal. She actually takes it pretty well and likes it, it also keeps her fuller during the night so she only gets up once. Do you think it's to early to start her on the cereal already? If so, what age?

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Rene - posted on 04/08/2010

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Don't compromise your baby's health for a few more hours of sleep at night! Seek the advice of your childs pediatrician for your questions or concerns about your child. If you don't agree with the information they give you, get a second opinion.

Feeding rice cereal in bottles can cause your baby to choke and breath it in to their lungs. It can also cause bowel problems. If they have problems eating it from a spoon, then they probably are not ready! Babies that use cereal to control their reflux are closely monitored with the amount and potential side effects. Saying that your parents fed you rice cereal in a bottle and you came out fine is like saying that using an item that was recalled for killing or hurting a baby is fine because it didnt kill or hurt any of your kids. It says that 76 moms responded to this and out of all of them I read one that has a child with bowel problems. Just because something bad hasnt happened to you or anyone you know from it, doesnt mean that it cant or wont happen. If rice cereal was ok to put in a bottle... then they would make rice cereal for bottles. Sorry if I sound like a B word but Im looking at my 3 month old and cant imagine giving her something that I know might harm her. Wishing you all the best!

Becci - posted on 03/05/2010

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It is far too early to start on cereal. The World Health Organisation recommends waiting until 6 months but the companies make it appropriate from 4 months. You also shouldn't give it to them in a bottle as it can clog up the bottles and be bad for their teeth when they come through.
She is only 2 months, she's not expected to be sleeping through the night. Give her time to be a baby.

Have you tried hungrier baby milk?

At least try talking to your doctor/health visitor first.

Dorte - posted on 03/05/2010

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All research I see recommends delaying starting solids. Most recently I saw a study that links starting solids early (before 6 MONTHS) to obesity. Babies at this age eat often, it is what they are supposed to do. Feeding them things that are harder for them to digest will make them sleep longer, but that is not necessarily a good thing.

Myra - posted on 03/05/2010

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If you can't fill the tank, it's time to try. My 21mo old started at 5wks old, and my 5wk old started at 4wks. It's not "time" based on feeding charts and recommendations, but a full tummy is non-negotiable no matter what age...minutes old, or 100 years old. For mine, the magic number was 36oz/day for 10 days (to make sure the amount was not in correlation to a growth spurt). Up to 36oz is normal until they get to 4 months old, so once they hit 36oz of milk a day, I started cereal. It was a hard decision for me...not one I took lightly since I'd done the reading on why it isn't recommended until 4-6 months of age, but keeping a full tank is more important if the cereal works fine.



The "give them more" method is what I did first with both of mine. They would be hungry, take so much milk, they'd spit up - making the hunger worse - and end up taking even more. It's true you can't over-feed them at this age, that they only take what they need, however, milk on its own is not very filling for a lot of babies. I wouldn't recommend trying cereal until yours starts taking 36oz/day since that is the highest "normal" cutoff amount. My 5wk old sleeps 4-5 hours at a time at night when she has cereal, so it isn't always true that cereal makes them sleep through the night.



You do what needs to be done...it's what parents do. If you feel something is right, the best thing you can do is follow your instinct. Many will say you're wrong, many will say you're right, but at the end of the day, that doesn't matter. Worst thing you can do is to not do something you know is right because others tell you it's wrong. If it wasn't right for your child to go on cereal, they wouldn't tolerate it yet.

Ashley - posted on 04/14/2010

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not all drs have the same opinion..not all mommies have the same opinion..do what you think is best..i started my son this week on 2tsp of rice cereal in his bottles to help with spit up and its working and he seems much more satisfied after feedings. in a few weeks im going to try giving him the same amount with a spoon to see how that goes..ask your friends who have kids..and in the end..do what you think is best..you dont have to go strictly text book..my son is almost12 weeks now and is not over weight and completely healthy..so if you want to add the slightest amount to the bottles id start a tsp at a time and go from there..cant hurt to try..also if they do get constipated adding an ounce of diluted pear juice does the trick to fix that as well..one bottle with it once a day does the trick :)

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Claire - posted on 04/20/2010

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I wouldn't do the cereal yet. Try Enfamil AR it has added rice starch and is better that just putting rice in the bottle because it is made to still meet all the nutritional needs of your growing little one, Rice just fills them up

Crystal - posted on 04/20/2010

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I started my son (who's now 7) at 2 months based on his doctor's advice. He has no food allergies and is not overweight. His sister (now 3 1/2 months) did the same. She does just fine with it! Each baby is different and you are going to get TONS of advice from everybody. Just remember that it's your baby and whatever works for you and for her is what needs to happen.

Erica - posted on 04/19/2010

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Listen - I have three kids and I have always used rice cereal in the bottle. Even as young as 2 months with my second child. Right now I have ababy who is 3 months and is taking cereal in her bottles. I reccommend it. Dr's only say not to use it because they have to. Guarantee you when the dr's at home being mommy or daddy I bet they put cereal in their babies bottles... It's not going to hurt them - if the baby starts throwing up or having a hard time going to the bathroom then maybe reconsider the amount or how often you put the cereal in the bottle. I ususally do a teaspoon or so in each 6 oz bottle...

Amy-jordan - posted on 04/19/2010

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the hungier baby milk dusnt work on my son eitha but he doesnt get bellyache or anythin he just has it the same as stage 1 so i gave him baby rice aswell coz he was havin between 6/8oz every 3 hours, he's bin on the rice since he was 5 weeks an really enjoyed havin it an it hasnt done him anyharm he's havin good BM and doenst get sick on it. xx

Joannah - posted on 04/19/2010

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my son is now 14 weeks old, been sleeping through the night since 4 weeks old but has he's now on 7 fl oz 4 times a day which seems to keep him full, am i doin the right thing, ive tried the hungrier baby milk but he gets badly constepatid on it and suffers with belly ach on it, what else could i do at his age???

Amy-jordan - posted on 04/19/2010

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my little man was 5 weeks wen he started on cow&gate baby rice with his tea time feed, he's now 3months old and on jars of baby food :) he loves it xx

Sarah - posted on 04/18/2010

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my oldest was 3 months when we gave him food my middle was the same and my youngest is three months now and we have started her on rusks she not to sure on the spoon thing in her mouth but she likes the taste i think it depends on the b=child and you will know your baby well enough to know when they are ready 4 food

Alexis - posted on 04/18/2010

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I started my daughter on it when she was 3 months and she is perfectly fine she is now almost 4 and she is exactly where she is supposed to be.she is not obese or anything..Bottom line I dont see a problem..maybe just start off by giving her a half of scoop..?

Carrie - posted on 04/17/2010

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If you read the labels on the cereal and baby food it says you should not be starting it untill your baby is atleast holding there head up and sit supported, im pretty sure there are no babies doing that at 2-3 weeks old. There is no need to rush things.. if yu feed them formula and there still hungry feed them more dont do things there not ready for.

Imogen - posted on 04/08/2010

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What I forgot to add is my Grandfather IS a doctor. I would not do anything if he said that it was an absolute no no as he knows his stuff. But he also said that years ago weaning a baby at six months was the norm as we did not have the kind of things we have today. Every child is an individual and you know your baby better than any one else. I personally would not put rice in a bottle. There are signs that babies are ready...e.g. if they take from the spoon easily, if they do not spit their food out etc. I gave my daughter it because she was not content, not because I thought it would mean she would sleep 12 hours a night. For me thats a bonus.

Imogen - posted on 04/07/2010

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My daughter is 3 months old and is on pureed fruit on a morning and at tea time. She is breast fed and has a long feed before and even has a feed after too. I have plenty of milk (I usually express in the middle of the night) and she feeds on demand during the day which is a LOT of the time. She now sleeps through (which did not happen with either of my other two children, who were both weaned by four months and neither of them slept as well as my daughter). She doesn't have tummy ache, has normal bowel movements and plenty of wet nappies. The only thing I do insist on is no gluten. The fact that she cries for it and recognises her bowl says it all!

Katie - posted on 04/06/2010

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That is intresting cause my daughter is like everyone else and not staying full eating every four hours but last time I was at the doctors he said we will talk about solid foods at 4 months and we went to the store to look and the oatmeal said 4 months. I guess if it doesnt hurt them and keeps them full it doesnt matter!

Samantha - posted on 04/06/2010

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The reason they say to wait until 4 months is because later on they can develop food allergies. My mother in law started giving my son cereal at 2 months and baby food at 4 months with out my knowledge and he now has food allergies. We don't know 100% if that is what caused the food allergies, but if she would have let me be mom and wait until i felt he was ready there is a possibility things could be different now.

Kenya - posted on 04/06/2010

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There's nothing wrong with giving your baby cereal they get hungry like everyone else. I started my son on cereal right after he turned 2 months and he loves it. All babies are different so just monitor your baby after the first couple of days and see how they feel and how they poop to determine is they can handle it or not.

Aleynel - posted on 04/06/2010

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hey mines is 3 month and i started givin her cereal when she was 2 1/2 and the doctor told me to stop givin her cereal because she was to small and she could of have problems latter on.. she told me that at 4 month i could start

Jody - posted on 04/06/2010

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Well its 100% safe my daughter has reflux and medically speaking its the best thing for it because I was freaking out when they told me to put her on cereal with my first I waited til almost 5 months but its safe and trust me I am way over protected and nuts when it comes to going by the book medically I did my research but also in my opinion don't go giving it to your child just for sleep and you cannot give the amount of cereal its says to give that young thats not appropriate my daughter is 9 weeks gets 1 tsp per bottle the box of gerber rice calls for 1 tbsp per oz huge difference my advice is don't assume anything always listen and ask doctor first Good luck I average about 4 hours of sleep a night It gets better!

Teresa - posted on 04/05/2010

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I started Angelina on cereal 2 weeks ago...at 2 months. She did not like it so my Dr. suggested putting it in her bottle at night. It really worked! The only problrm is that it tends to bind her so I have been countering that with a little bit of baby fruit. The pears seem to work the best and that she LOVES!!!!

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well iv given her the recomended of 1 spoon of baby rice mixed with 10 spoons of baby milk and she gobbled the lot so lets see how she does lol x

Alissa - posted on 04/05/2010

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My daughter just turned 3 months on the 3rd and has been on rice cereal since she was 2 months. I only give it her before bed, her last bottle for the night i put like an ounce of cereal in it and she sleeps all night! I think it should be fine.

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my daughter is 3 months on hungry baby formula i was going to start her on baby rice but was afraid as it says 4 month plus do you think she will be ok with it as she is almost 13 weeks and were only starting 3 weeks earlier then recomended?

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Our son had an issue with spitting up - not just a little, but with almost every feeding, he was spitting up just about everything he ate. We started adding half a scoop of cereal to his 4-ounce bottles, and his spitting up decreased to little dribbles down the chin occasionally - he stays fuller for longer and is much happier. We didn't do it to help with his sleep - he still gets up once or twice a night. It simply settles his stomach more. Keep it to a reasonably low amount, and it should help.

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what is hungrier baby milk? I've never heard of it. Where can you get it in Mississauga, Ontario?

Hoo - posted on 04/04/2010

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my son now already 12wks.. he now drink 5oz every 4-5 hours.. and night time he will wake up 2 times for milk... thinking to add some rice cereal for him.. can anyone tell me, do i need and how much if give and wht kind of rice cereal should i give?

Jackie - posted on 04/04/2010

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Ive been feeding mine on rice cerel for a while now I dont even measure I I just put 2 ounces of her formula and water mix in and pur the cerel until I think its the right thickness. She usually eats it all and sleeps through the night but if she doesnt finish it thats fine to. It really helps with getting them to sleep through the night longer

Hayley - posted on 04/04/2010

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My little one is almost 3 months old now, she is sleeping from 8pm thru til 5/6am just on formula so sleeping isnt a problem. I will be waiting til 4 months to give her baby rice or ceral but if she wasnt sleeping so well I would prob be considering it now. I'd say trust ur insticts when deciding when to feed cereals, all babies are different and some really just dont get full on milk.

Michael - posted on 04/03/2010

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for those who are saying "he'd keep eating until he spit up." The babies are probably just trying to comfort nurse, but you can't really do that with a bottle like you can with the breast.

I've noticed that with each baby my breastmilk lets down faster. we had some spit up issues with my son because he'd overeat. and now with my daughter i can't really let her comfort nurse because she gets too much in her system.

Michael - posted on 04/03/2010

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omg people. that is waaaay too early to be giving cereal. babies wake up during the night for a reason. it's normal. i know we all want our sleep, but filling your baby's bottle with rice cereal causes them to overeat which is not a healthy trend you want to start.

essentially when the tongue thrust reflex (sucking reflex) goes away - your baby is READY for solid foods. rice cereal counts as a solid even if it's "liquidy". when that reflex goes away it means that the babies intestines are ready for digesting solid foods. before that they're more porous to absorb all the nutrients that breastmilk supplies.
your baby really doesn't NEED solid foods at 6 months. you can wait until they have the pincher grab reflex down and start giving them soft foods to chew on.

just because other mommies say it's okay, doesn't mean it's healthy.

Brittany - posted on 04/03/2010

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i just took my baby to her 2 month appt. and the dr. said dont start babies on any of that stuff until 4 months bc it can cause digestive problems and food allergies.

Shannon - posted on 04/02/2010

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I keep seeing people say it's hard for babies to digest the rice....I had to go against my husbands wishes...my son just wasn't filling up and he's 3 months now and he doesn't seem to mind at all but he doesn't have and digestive problems nor constipation. I'm going to go with it depends on the child. Colin seem's perfectly fine. He has normal bowel movements and normal wet diapers. My brother and I were both given rice at 2 and 3 months and there is ABSOLUTLY no prolems with us. Again I am thinking it depends on the child...but YOU are the mother YOU decide what to give your child.

Jamie - posted on 03/21/2010

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I started my son on cereal at 2 months also. His poo was getting way to hard and i was worried about constipation so i would only give him cereal bottles at night. Then I tried the new enfamil formula rest full night and it worked about the same without the hard poo. you should try but a mothers intuition is always right so do what you feel is good for your baby

Natalie - posted on 03/18/2010

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im a first time mum and i would not even think of giving my 2 month old lil girl rice cereal or any other solid food yet, all the doc's and books and midwife's say its not safe untill 6 months! it will mess with their digestive system and thats not a good thing, at this age most babies dont sleep all night but some do, infact my lil girl does and she does not have anything else but formula and sleeps 9 hours!! she is only 2 months, she on 6 oz if she gets much hungryer thn ill put her up to 7 0z and so on . why dont you just try giving your daughter more formula or try hungry baby food. its much better for her at this age.

Otilia - posted on 03/18/2010

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ive been giving my 2 month old cereal since she was 5 weeks old she now sleeps through the night which is great ppl have told me to wait untill shes older but she was going through formula like crazy and i dont get wic so it was expensive for me to keep buying cans of enfamil every week at 15 bucks a piece i was loosing alot of money now that she has the cereal and the formula she stays fuller longer and sleeps through the night. so id say give ur baby cerela it will help alot with keeping ur baby fuller and sleeping through then night

Stephany - posted on 03/18/2010

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I think as a mum you need to make your own decisions, i have 5 and my first 4 were not fed any solids until 4 months, number 5 is 8 weeks old and has days of seeming to be super hungry and days of lots of sleeping. He is exclusively fed on the breast.
Babies are totally geared to wake for feeds often, even if you look at the animal kingdom, if wildlife carers take in baby animals, they will all tell you they have to feed them every 2 hours 24 hours a day. Babies (apart from a few exceptional ones) are not designed to sleep through the night or only feed 4-5 times a day. Their digestive systems and their kidneys etc are not capable of dealing with solids until 4 months at least.
Try other milk formulas first, accept that some babies wake often, and if need be then see if they just need to sleep in your arms every now and then. I see lots of mums who barely hold their infants unless they are giving them a bottle, and i also see a lot of infants who have theirs bottle propped up in the pram into the infants mouth. Babies need lots of physical contact and lots of cuddles. Again, look at the animal kingdom, all mammals have their infants with them 24/7 until close to weaning age.
Often things that are bad for us, do not do us any harm until many years later.

Jeanne - posted on 03/17/2010

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Also, your baby can actually aspirate on cereal - it comes up from the tummy, and the baby breathes in. Because of the more solid consistency of the cereal, they can't cough it back out of their lungs. Babies have been known to die from this.

I just wouldn't ever risk putting in a bottle. Ever. For all those different reasons.

Sara - posted on 03/17/2010

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That's really early for cereal. I bought some for my 2-month-old son today. I only put a little bit bc I had trouble making enough milk for him today. I don't plan on using it *ever* again for 3-4 months.

Cereal is a type of solid and the WHO doesn't recommend solids to children under 6 months. It can be bad for their tummies and BMs.

Jeannette - posted on 03/17/2010

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I was reading all ur conversation. ok I guess I could try given her some baby cereal. It is good to know my baby is not the only one up there that is always hungry:) and to know I can help my baby be happier makes feel better

Jeannette - posted on 03/17/2010

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hey this new to me but. I gat interested because my baby is 2 months and also eating seems she does not get satisfied w/the formula.

Jeanne - posted on 03/17/2010

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Hmmm. Yes, your babies might feel fuller and sleep longer, but there's a major problem with rice cereal anyway: it has absolutely no nutritional value at all, and in a baby this young can cause constipation. Actually, what it does is technically stuff your baby full of material it cannot digest. So the baby is only getting a part of the nutrition it needs. While it might seen like you're satisfying your baby more, what's actually going on is more like deprivation because the rice is completely indigestible.

I would hold off forever on rice cereal - first food doesn't have to be cereal after all, it can be fruit, or avocado - something of that nature. Rice cereal might well make your life much more convenient, but trust me (and the WHO, and the APA) - it's not doing your baby any good at all. Not at all... *worried face*

Kimberley - posted on 03/17/2010

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i'm sure its fine, my baby is 7 weeks old i have not got her on cereals but i remember watching the baby wisher and she said that as long as the baby seems to be fine with it and if the baby's digestive system is agreeing to it then its fine...
i have given my baby a few licks of an ice lolly and her dad lets her try his peanut butter lol... she likes the new tastes.

Jayde - posted on 03/16/2010

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Babies only need breaast or bottle unless u have spoken to ur doctor and r concerned. Babies feed often as breastmilk is quickly digested but is best for their little tummys to digest. (formula a little longer thats why they sleep longer to) They have only been on this earth for a short time, so let them be babies. They only need milk. If they r hungry after a feed then either feed a little more or maybe u think they r still hungry when they might just need a cucddle or comfort or sleep. I BF my daughter who is 9 wks and she has 8 to 12 feeds a day sumtimes more if she is having a growth spurt. I think newborns should be getting up a few times a night for a feed its what they do. Starting them too early can cause probs with their little tummys babies were desighned to Be BF or bottlefed milk only up until the recommended age for rice cereal and u dont want to b responsible for probs. I didnt start my daughter who is now 3 until 6 mths.





Goodluck

Jade - posted on 03/16/2010

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Everyone's babies are very different in their growing rates. Some of them may need cereal earlier adn some may need it later. I have fed my oldest daughter cereals at 6 weeks and she is fine today! I am about to start my youngest that is about to turn 2 months next week on some cereal cause she drinks 8 oz bottles with just straight milk and she is crying for more after she has finished that. So some cereal may keep her full and less bottles to feed her at night. I highly reccommend it if u are not scared to do so! It will never hurt to try it once.

Trista - posted on 03/16/2010

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hi all, please seek medical advice re guarding young children from your doctor, or child health nurse.each child is different and their doctor will have all the up to date information regarding topics like sleeping and eating. severe damage can be done to babies if they are feed to early. your personal doctor is the best person to help you decide what is best for your baby,

Katy - posted on 03/16/2010

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Are you all putting it on a spoon or in a bottle ? cus i was warned not to put it in a bottle as it can cause baby to choke,and how much per oz are you adding ?? x

NOEMI - posted on 03/16/2010

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They say that by 6 months you can start you baby on cereal...the reason being that anytime soon can cause your baby to have food allergies. I would insist on taking your baby off the cereal and just feeding her sooner with less amount each time...I know what you mean about not getting full, my son seemed to not get full but if you feed them 2-3 hours 4-6 ounces it should be fine. You dont want your baby to develop food allergies...and the only reason she is getting full with the cereal is because her stomach cannot digest as well as formula only bottles...compare it too healthy food to fast food...your body needs food quicker when you eat healthy, like every few hours but if you eat greasy fast food you last longer because it takes longer for your body to digest...its the same thing for babies! keep that in mind! Hope all goes well, good luck!
Noemi

Lynnette - posted on 03/16/2010

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everyone says different things, I started my daughter with rice cereal when she was 1 month old. i put a little in a 4 oz bottle to fill her up because at 2 weeks she was wanting 4 oz every 2 hours.

Lorrielyn - posted on 03/14/2010

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my daughter is 8 weeks old now and i started giving her when she was 7 weeks.. i only give it to her at night.. she goes to bed at 9 and week up at around 1 am that's what she did when she wasn't taken it.. so any suggestion on making her sleep longer...

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