When Can Babies Eat Cheerios? Here are the Sure Facts You Need to Know
When my baby girl started eating solid foods, I was excited to let her try something new. I gave her applesauce, crackers, small chunks of chicken fillet and even some tomato pasta. She loved eating them and even pointed her finger to the foods she wants on the table.
One day, we were eating Cheerios, and I thought of giving my baby a few cereal pieces. But, is it safe for my baby? When can babies eat Cheerios?
I tried not to give her before I did some research just to be sure. In this post, you will learn more helpful facts about Cheerios and when you should allow your baby to eat them.
What is Cheerios ?
Cheerios is a household brand of cereals that are popular on the breakfast tables of Americans since the 1940’s. The cereal is made of different simple ingredients that are best paired with milk or eaten as is. Many children loved Cheerios since the 50’s not just because of its sweet flavor and crunchy texture, but also because of its commercial appeal.
Some of the varieties of Cheerios are the original Cheerios, Honey Nut, Multi Grain, Cinnamon Burst, Frosted, Apple Cinnamon, Chocolate, Yogurt Burst and Fruity Cheerios.
Ingredients found in Cheerios:
- Whole grain oats – at least 14 grams per serving in all varieties
- Wheat starch – thickening ingredient
- Tripotassium Phosphate – food emulsifier having similar properties with eggs
- Mixed tocopherols – a form of Vitamin E that preserves the freshness of the cereal
- Different spices and flavor – depending on the grain variety
The Benefits of Eating Cheerios:
- Vitamins: Cheerios are packed with different vitamins such as Vitamin A, Vitamin D, Vitamin E, Vitamin C and Vitamin B6 and 12. There are also other essential nutrients like folic acid, niacin, riboflavin, and thiamine.
- Calories: About 100 calories are contained in 1 cup of original Cheerios and 145 calories per cup for frosted varieties.
- Iron: Iron is essential for the body since it helps in preventing anemia. Original Cheerios contain 33 to 45 percent of the Recommended Dietary Intake for iron per cup while the Multigrain variety offers 100 percent RDI. Flavored Cheerios can give you the same amount of RDI with that of the original.
- Sugar: Original Cheerios contain a little amount of sugar, about 1 gram per cup. For Multigrain Cheerios, there are about 6 grams of sugar per serving. Flavored varieties have higher amounts of sugar at 9 to 16 grams per 1 cup.
- Fiber: The original variety of Cheerios, including the honey nut and yogurt, contains Whole-grain oats that have more soluble fiber than other grains. Original Cheerios have about 3 grams of dietary fiber while other varieties may contain dietary fibers ranging from 1.3 grams to 5 grams.
When Can Babies Eat Cheerios ?
To answer the question, we can look at the milestones of our babies when it comes to food.
Solid Food Milestone: It starts at the age of four and six months. Babies can now begin to hold their necks and lift up their heads without any support. They can sit up without assistance and show interest in the foods you eat.
Puree to Chunks Milestone: Babies can now venture in chewing their food instead of drinking pureed foods. You can gradually introduce mashed vegetables and fruits so there will be small chunks they can taste.
Finger Food Milestone: Babies will try to grab the foods they see using their hands. At this time, babies are now between the age of 7 and 11 months. You can introduce a few finger foods on his plate so he can quickly grab them and put in his mouth. Start with small pieces that he can easily swallow whole. It will be the right time for him to practice self-feeding.
Since Cheerios is considered as a soft finger food, you can begin introducing them during the Finger Food Milestone. Babies will love to see different colors of Cheerios varieties. They will even enjoy picking up the small cereals and putting in their mouths.
*Take note: The developmental milestones of babies are guides and must not be taken lightly. Most babies may follow the exact pattern while others may experience slight advances or delays in development. It is best to talk with your pediatrician on the changes in your baby first.
Signs that Your Baby is Ready to Eat Cheerios
Even if babies can start eating Cheerios at the early age of 7 and 11 months, there are still indications that you need to check before introducing the food to your baby. Consider these signs so that you can be sure that your child will safely eat Cheerios without any complications.
Extra Tips on How to Safely Feed Your Baby
- Always supervise feeding to avoid swallowing handfuls of Cheerios at one time.
- Consult with your pediatrician the possible risks before feeding.
- Avoid feeding your child when he is moving around. Do not allow him to eat when inside a moving vehicle.
Let Him Enjoy!
Seeing your baby enjoying the food that you also eat will be amusing and a memory to remember. You can take photos of his first attempt to eat Cheerios and how he would react.
I still remembered the first time I allowed my baby to eat her Cheerios. It was the multi grain variety, and she loved the new taste in her mouth. She keeps on grabbing for more and I constantly stop her hand and removing the Cheerios. It was a fun day for all of us!
When did you first feed your baby some Cheerios? How was the experience? Tell us more!