No Cereal in the Bottle!

It used to be common practice to put cereal in baby bottles as a way to get them to sleep longer. First off, this doesn't work (I'll explain later). Secondly, it can actually be dangerous.

Because young baby's suck and swallow reflexes are immature they may cough while drinking. This isn't too big of a deal with breastmilk or formula because they're made for babies this age. Cereal, however can get into the lungs when they cough and cause serious pulmonary issues.

The other issue is disrupting a baby's natural ability to tell when they are full by how many ounces of liquid they take in. Adding cereal tricks them into taking in more calories then they're supposed to, which teaches them to overeat. Cereal is also empty calories compared to breast milk or formula, so the baby may actually get hungry again SOONER. So much for sleeping through the night!

Some studies have shown that this early disruption of our body's natural ability to sense when we've had enough led to the epidemic of obesity in the last generation.

So my advice is to give a hungry baby more formula/breast milk if they're still hungry. In a few weeks it could be a totally different game so be patient. Save the cereal for when they're old enough to eat it from a spoon.

07
Moms Expertise
    04/11/14
    5sarah
    Of course there are exceptions like my step daughter Kylie was a premie and they have her cereal to help her gain weight and the cereal settles better. Of course that was 13 years ago.
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      04/11/14
      Great post. I wish I knew about all that when I was giving it to my son in his bottle. Both my mother in law and mother recommended that I start doing it and I felt kind of pressured to give it a go, but to me I couldn't see that it was making any difference whatsoever to his sleeping pattern so I stopped doing it and just told them I was still doing it. I wouldn't have started at all had I known the above though.
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        I've heard mamas using cereal for reflux. But I've read more and more about the fact that rice cereal has NO nutritional value. I will not be using it for Charlie. In fact, the doc just went over a list of okay and not okay with me the other day. He said if Charlie is interested I can give him some solids. I won't do that yet though, he's just 4 months today. He also said when I do start to stay away from honey, nuts, eggs, barley, wheat.. and a few others.

        I'm sticking to formula right now, and at 6 months we'll start introducing some homemade baby food :)
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        That's exactly what I did! I did start at 5 months with fruits and veggies though. Not much, just some for her to practice mushing in her mouth.

        We never did commercial rice cereal. It's really easy to make at home and has way more nutritional value. Especially if you use brown rice. There's tons of iron in it and other good nutrients. Making it at home means that the nutrients aren't all cooked out in a factory somewhere.
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          04/11/14
          with both of my kids I put cereal in their bottles and I'm planning on doing the same with this baby.
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          About Taylor
          Current: Chanhassen, Minnesota
          Birth: July 26
          On Moms.com since: Dec 18, 2013
          I'm the proud mama of my daughter Avery, born on June 6, 2013. I'm 26 years old, I work from home as a graphic designer, I will be testing for my 5th degree black belt in Tae Kwon Do in 2015. My husband, Derek, and I have been happily married for 3 years.