Oatmeal is renowned for its healthy characteristics, but does this carry over to babies too?
Throughout your child’s first year of life, there is so much you have to experience and learn. You have to make sure they are getting the right amount of food.
You have to make sure they are learning. You have to make sure they are safe. You have to know what is good for them and what is unhealthy. It can be stressful trying to keep up with everything, but as parents, we do what is best for our kids.
One of the toughest jobs of a parent is knowing what food is safe for your child and what age they have to be before they can eat or drink certain items.
Up until four months of age, your child should only consume breast milk or formula. Between four and six months of age, your child can start being introduced to solid foods. These solid foods are generally pureed fruits and vegetables, but they can also be introduced to cereals and other soft food items, including oatmeal.
Can I Give My Baby Oatmeal? Answer: From 4-6 Months.
Oatmeal contains many vitamins and nutrients and is extremely healthy for your child. As a young baby, though, your child is still being introduced to certain foods, and as a parent, you have to watch for signs of allergic reactions.
Introducing New Foods
When introducing your child to new foods, it is always best to wait at least three days in between introductions of new foods to allow enough time for allergy symptoms to appear. Three days after being introduced to a new food, if your child has not shown any signs or symptoms of an allergic reaction, you can add that food to your child’s diet.
Oatmeal is a great food for babies because it is not only healthy, but it poses a very minimal risk of food allergy. Keep in mind, however, that some children do have allergies to grains or wheats, so while an allergic reaction to oatmeal is not likely, it is still possible.
When feeding oatmeal to your child, you should start with plain oatmeal. Blander foods are best for your child during the first stages of solid food introduction, as all they are currently used to is breast milk and/or formula. When feeding oatmeal to your child, you need to also make sure that it is not too hot. Some parents will often make it, and then stick the bowl in the fridge or freezer for a few minutes to cool off.
Keep in mind, though, that even if the top layer is cool to the touch, it still may be hot towards the bottom of the bowl. For this reason, you should always check the temperature before giving it to your baby. You do not want to burn the inside of their mouth.
Basic Skills Needed
Your baby will be ready for oatmeal around four to six months of age. At this time, your child should be able to sit up with support and be able to mash food in their mouth. Oatmeal is a great food because it is easy for them to mash and swallow. Be sure to give small spoonfuls.
Once your baby is a bit older and can feed themselves, oatmeal is still great because it is easy for them to spoon feed themselves. They may also enjoy the texture and feeding it to themselves with their hands.
There are many flavors of oatmeal available. When introducing flavored oatmeals to your baby, make sure to wait the three days before switching. This way, if your child has a reaction, you will know it is from one of the ingredients. If you want to give your child a flavored oatmeal, opt for the fruit flavored ones versus the sugar or cinnamon flavor.
While the fruit oatmeals contain sugar, they do not contain as much as the sugar flavor. Also, cinnamon may be too harsh on a young child’s stomach. Make sure that if there are chunks of fruit in the oatmeal, they are small enough so that your child does not choke.
Remember, your baby will be ready to eat oatmeal around four to six months of age. Oatmeal is full of many vitamins and nutrients, and is a great food to add to your child’s diet. It is easy to feed to your baby, and it is soft enough for them to mash in their mouth without any trouble.
Always make sure the oatmeal is cool before giving it to your child, as you do not want to burn the inside of your child’s mouth. Always start with plain oatmeal, and if you want to give a flavored oatmeal, always opt for the fruit flavors over the spices. Fruit flavored oatmeal is generally more healthy and less harsh on your child’s stomach.
As always, if you have any questions about oatmeal, it is best to consult with your child’s doctor. He or she will be able to discuss your concerns and answer your questions in more thorough detail.