Cereal and Bottles...

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Vicki - posted on 07/26/2009

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http://www.drgreene.com/21_861.html

And it doesn’t even work. Scientists at the Cleveland Clinic studied the effect of cereal on sleep and found that adding the cereal did nothing at all to speed up the age of sleeping through the night. That first uninterrupted 6-hour stretch of sleep came no earlier in those who took cereal early.2



People swear otherwise. I suspect the reason is that kids do fall asleep a bit more quickly, and some babies may even go a bit longer between feedings. There is no scientific evidence, though, to support the claim that cereal in the bottle will help an infant increase total sleep or decrease crying.3



Drawing on the wisdom of experience and the latest scientific knowledge, the American Academy of Pediatrics recommends against adding cereal to the bottle. It may be tempting after your 16th straight sleep-deprived night to cut a bigger hole in the feeding nipple to add rice cereal. But it won’t offer lasting help, and it may be giving your baby a lasting gift that both of you will regret.




http://www.wholesomebabyfood.com/tipcere...

Why does it seem that adding cereal to a bottle makes a baby sleep longer?







As our pediatrician explained, about the time parents begin to try the cereal in the bottle trick is just about the time that an infant may be sleeping for longer periods at a time. This new. longer sleeping pattern is a natural progression as baby ages and it oftentimes coincides with the addition of cereal to the bottle. This coincidence perpetuates the dangerous myth that cereal in a bottle does indeed help an infant sleep through the night.







To further this explanation, let us recall that between 6-8 months old, baby is often back to waking at night for a feeding. By this time baby should be eating solids and it appears that those solids are no longer helping baby sleep through the night. In reality, baby is hitting another growth spurt and may wake again during the night for more feedings regardless of eating solids.




http://www.babiestoday.com/articles/feed...

Cain says the cereal in a bottle myth has been passed down from friends and families for years. "When parents hear their peers talk about how their baby slept through the night when they started to add cereal in the bottle, this makes others want to try it as well," he says. "I understand parenthood is a 24-hour service and can be a difficult job at times, but one must think, what's best for my baby?"



"Babies are supposed to cry, as this is their form of communication to us," Cain says.



Starting Too Soon

Registered dietitian Antonio Cain cautions parents about putting cereal in the bottle, as they are putting their baby at risk for developing allergies, causing digestive problems and even choking when adding solids too soon. We are all born with the ability to know how much we need to take in. "This is why we inform parents to wait on cues and feed on demand," he says. "When adding solids such as cereal, we disturb that self-regulation and set our babies up for excessive caloric intake that leads to excessive weight gain."

22 Comments

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Kate CP - posted on 07/26/2009

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Melissa, it's not recommended by doctors here in America either. It's really not good for a baby. A baby born last week needs to feed frequently. Yea, it's a pain in the butt. But a 1 week old can't handle grains with their immature digestive system.

I also really don't think rice cereal would have helped your daughter. I can't say one way or the other, obviously, but the only thing I have ever heard of rice cereal helping was reflux and even then not all the time. It's really not great stuff at all. No body should be eating it.

Vicki - posted on 07/26/2009

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Melissa!! Who is forever following who here? I'd recommend to you checking out those links above before you go about "spreading the word" again. Doctors do not recommend this for good reason.

Mel - posted on 07/26/2009

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it can help to fill the baby up for longer if they are not ready for solids yet, help them sleep through the night, helps with reflux and aspiration (wish id known about it, i culd have saved my daughter form tube feeding).



on the other hand it can make them not want to eat because they are getting food through thier bottle, and it causes constipation. id recommend it to someone if their baby wasnt sleeping thru or had reflux but other then that i wouldnt spoon feed he stuff its disgusting. my friend has a baby born last week who was up every hour and i told her about the rice cereal since its not recommended by doctors in australia so i try to spread the word. if I had been america my little girl would have been fixed a long time ago and all i woud have had to do was use rice cereal

Kate CP - posted on 07/26/2009

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Well, it's not recommended. I also nursed so I never had to worry about cereal in bottles. Plus that stuff is awful. No nutritional value and it tastes like cardboard. Blech. I started my daughter on fruits and veggies. Will do it again for the next one. :)

Kate - posted on 07/26/2009

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Cereal in a bottle is a bad idea. It forces babies to eat the cereal, which can lead to overeating. It also takes away their right to choose, they cannot have the milk without the cereal. What if they are allergic to the cereal or don't like it? It appears to make them sleep longer because they cannot digest the cereal, so it takes longer to digest the meal as a whole. But, it could just as easily cause them to be awake more because their stomach hurts. So it may backfire.

Also, babies do not have the enzymes to digest grains -- even from a spoon -- until they are 18 - 24 months, so it is best not to start cereal at all. Give them ripe, mashed fruits and veggies, steamed fruits and veggies, pureed meat and/or egg yolk (not all babies can tolerate egg yolk so young, even though it is the white that causes the allergy) if you want to give them food. But be aware that these foods have fewer calories than milk so you don't want to replace any of their milk feedings with foods until they are much older, closer to 1.

September - posted on 07/26/2009

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I've never put cereal in my childs bottle and I never will. That was not the point to my question. I just wanted to hear diffrent views about it. I don't agree with it at all. Unless of course it's needed for medical resons. My son is a great sleeper and has been since he was 3 weeks old. Anything that I've ever feed my son has been with a spoon. We did not start him on solids until he was 6 months old which was highly recommended by his doctor. I do however agree that the choices that you make for your family may not always be the best choices for every family.

Kristen - posted on 07/26/2009

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when my daughter was about 3 months old she was not satisfied with just formula so i would put just a little bit of cereal in her bottle but not much about a half of the formula scooper for a 4 oz bottle but that was just to satisfy her but when it came to eating i did feed it to her off a spoon but at 3 months she was still a little too young for it to be thick like cereal but when she was about 4 months i did make the cereal thicker and fed her off the spoon and everyone is right dr.s don't want you to put cereal in the bottle but they also don't want them to have it to soon either like i did the dr.s are or a time chain on when you should feed your child different things and thats what they go by but alot of people don't go by what the dr says they do their on thing and thats what i did and my daughter is now 14 months old and still healthy as an ox so do what you think is right

Jodi - posted on 07/26/2009

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I did with my son, and was actually advised by the doctor to do so (this is 12 years ago) because he was such a hungry baby and not putting on the weight he should. It was actually the thing to do back then.



I never did it with my daughter. To be honest, it never occurred to me (probably because she wasn't so hungry, and she slept so well). And I think there are more choices of formulas these days than what their used to be, so there is really no need to.

Abigail - posted on 07/26/2009

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I never did that with my daughter. Her bottle was always for her formula and her cereal was spoon fed. It was nice to get that one on one time while I was feeding it to her :)

September - posted on 07/26/2009

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Studies have proven that putting cereal in your childs bottle does not fill them up more! It amazes me how many people seem to think so. I've never put cereal in my sons bottle therefor enjoying the time when we are able to sit down and eat together :)

[deleted account]

Never tried cereal in the bottle, and given what is known about the practice, I'm not sure why anyone would (except for medical reasons). It doesn't make babies sleep longer. And even the baby cereal manufacturers say not to put their product in bottles because of the risk of choking/aspiration. If you want to give your baby cereal, use a spoon. If they aren't able to deal with spoon feeding, they aren't ready for solids.

[deleted account]

As a mom to 7 children I can't say what is best for anyone else's child. Each is different and needs/requires different things.




As for scientist: you can not rely on scientist to tell you what is best for your child.




The best thing is be the parent and parent your child. Always make decisions based on your childs abilities. Do they have reflux?.. if so, they are unable to hold down liquids and must have cereal included in their bottles. There is a whole line of formulas out there (if your not breastfeeding) with cereal added to it for the children with reflux? *I've had three children with extreme reflux that wouldn't have survived without cereal very early on - before the "recommended age". Choking dangers - of course... baby or adult we've all choked. Once again, care for your child by holding them upright while bottle feeding (cereal or no).


Or, are you doing it just because you heard it makes sleeping better?.. Probably not the best idea then. Every child has different sleeping patterns. I know your thoughts here (LOL) some of my kiddos didn't believe in sleeping at night.




With loving consideration to all your options, you will make the best decision for your child! Enjoy the process :)

Renee - posted on 07/26/2009

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My youngest son is a really big eater too. He was eating 8 to 10 ounces of milk/formula by about a month old(or so) as well. Daddy is a big boy too so even though the little man was a whole month early he was still 8lbs at birth. Rather than feeding him 8 ounces of milk his doctor suggested putting a little bit of cereal in his bottle. It never really helped but I would only put enough to where the milk was still liquid with no clumps whatsoever. Babies can choke on any foods so of course that is a risk, but just because you put cereal in the bottle doesn't mean they are definitely going to choke. My son has choked on regular formula a few times & has never choked with a bottle that contains any bit of cereal. I would not recommend putting cereal in a bottle to anyone, but of course every parent feels differently.

Amy - posted on 07/26/2009

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I have a 13 yr old and a 5 month old. I used cereal in the bottles for both as early as four weeks old. My oldest was eating 8 oz bottles at every feeding at 4 wks old and was still unsatisifed. The ped's office told me to play with her or try water. Have you tried that with a 4 week old??? I attempted spoon feeding..doesn't work so well when they are so little. My 5 month old started at about 6 weeks. My opinion, it most certainly got them through the night. Neither one has choked on the cereal. I always started with rice and always started with about a teaspoon. I think as long as you are putting in enough to mix well with the formula, it's not going to cause a choking hazard. Both my girls began eating off a spoon at four months with no problem. My little one still gets rice in all of her bottles and she eats it for breakfast in the am. She sleeps from 8pm to 6 am every night. I'll take it!!

Stephanie - posted on 07/26/2009

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Our son never choked on it, and he filled up more too. So from personal experience I think it's fine. I'm sure some kids might choke so it's not 100% safe, but then again if we stopped feeding our son something because he choked on it once he'd never have anything to eat (or drink for that matter). He didn't like that cereal from a spoon so we just went to the gerber food.

Vicki - posted on 07/26/2009

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Cereal should not be put into bottles for numerous reasons. Personally I feel this is potentially dangerous advice some mothers seem to actually believe is "helpful." It could cause choking or aspiration of the cereal. It does not allow babies to sleep any better. It can trick baby into overeating constantly which will affect him for an entire lifetime. And if baby will only drink solids, he is not ready for said solids.

Renee - posted on 07/26/2009

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everyone has told me not to, but i used to put a little bit of cereal in the last bottle before bed(for about a week). i was recently told not to do that anymore because their little bodies don't break down the cereal properly when they sleep, so i stopped. now i only feed my son cereal with a spoon. it helps their mind grow by learning something new:)

Heather - posted on 07/26/2009

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I used to put it in the bottle only at bed time, to fill they up a little more then just formula. But during the day it was always on the spoon.

Tina - posted on 07/26/2009

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My ped. doctor told me not to as well but for her night time bottle I do add alittle cereal. She still gets cereal for breakfast that I don't put in her bottle just so she can learn how to eat different textures and consistancy.

Beth - posted on 07/26/2009

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I breastfed, but sometimes he would get a bottle. the Dr.'s tell you not to. I've been told they can choke. i dont see how thats possible. But they need to learn to eat cereal not drink it.

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