The debate has been raging for years on when to start feeding baby cereal. Some claim that cereal can be fed at just a few weeks old to help the baby sleep better since it fills them up for longer periods of time. Others claim that the baby should be the one to give cues on when they are ready for solid food.
When To Start Baby Cereal – Experts Say 4 to 6 Months
Experts have determined that the best time to start solid foods, beginning with baby cereal, is between four and six months of age. This is the age range when most babies are ready developmentally for a taste of their first solid foods. This is when the baby loses the extrusion reflex that helps them when sucking a bottle or breast. By losing this reflex, they are able to better swallow a spoonful of cereal, or spit it back out if they do not want it. It helps keep them from choking.
Signs Baby is Ready
- The baby is able to sit up without support and can hold their head and neck up well.
- The baby has doubled in weight since birth. The baby is growing well and has not had any major set backs.
- Food on other people’s plates interest the baby and they may even be grabbing at that food.
- Food is able to stay in the mouth and not dribble out. Some drooling and dribbling is expected but if the entire spoonful comes back out, baby may not be ready.
- The baby is hungry more often or is still hungry when the bottle is empty.