Beginning the transition from formula or breast milk to solid food can be an exciting time for you and your little one. Adding food to your baby’s diet should be a slow and gradual process to avoid overwhelming their delicate digestive system.
As a general rule, this introductory period can usually begin around the 6-month mark depending on your baby’s development, although some products aresuitable as part of a mixed weaning diet beginning at 4 months. Products will typically be labeled with information on when they can be added to a baby’s diet to make this process as straightforward as possible for new parents. Oatmeal is one of the best items to start with as it has a soft, easy-to-eat texture and is often fortified with valuable vitamins and minerals.
How to Add Oatmeal to Baby Formula?
There are a couple of ways to prepare oatmeal for your little one that we will cover below. As always it is best to consult your pediatrician before making any changes to your baby’s diet.
Bowl of Oatmeal
Preparing your oatmeal in a bowl is the most common method of preparation and is a great way to help your baby transition to eating solid food. Here is how to make it:
Gather your products: Oatmeal can be made using infant formula, whole milk or water, just make sure that you are using the appropriate mixing product for your baby’s age and oatmeal that is suitable for infants.
Prepare Formula: If you are using formula to prepare the oatmeal make sure that you follow the feeding guide and level off each scoop with the back of a clean dry knife.
Add Cereal Flakes: Mix the porridge and liquid together and let it swell briefly. Make sure the porridge is thin enough and check the temperature to ensure that it is safe for consumption.
Formula with Oatmeal in a Bottle
Feeding your little one with oatmeal in a bottle should only be done at the discretion of your pediatrician and in some cases may help babies with acid reflux. If using this method it is important that most of the bottle is formula, as it can easily become too thick if extra oatmeal is added. Here is how to make it:
Gather your products: It is important to use powdered oatmeal that is made for infants, as well as a nipple that can accommodate the texture of the mixture.
Prepare Formula: Prepare formula according to the instructions for whichever type you are using, whether it be powdered formula, ready-to-feed formula, or liquid concentrate.
Add Oatmeal: Start by adding1 tsp of oatmeal to the bottle, to ensure your baby can tolerate it well. This may be increased per your doctor's instructions.Make sure to monitor your baby closely while feeding, as a thicker formula may pose a choking hazard.
There are many benefits to adding oatmeal to your baby’s diet once they are at the appropriate age. It can be a nutritious and convenient meal or snack option as you begin the introduction of new foods and is a great part of amixed-weaning diet. Some of these benefits include:
Contains beneficial nutrients
Oatmeal is packed full of vitamins and minerals that support babies' development and growth. One of these beneficial vitamins is vitamin B, which helps cells function and grow, and aids in converting food into energy. Oatmeal also contains iron, iodine, and calcium.
On top of containing lots of good stuff, HiPP and Holle’s Organic porridge products are free from added sugar, low in allergens, and made without artificial colors and preservatives, aroma and flavor enhancers, and GMOs.
Promotes healthy digestion
Oatmeal is easy on the tummy, which makes it well tolerated by many babies. It is naturally high in fiber, which helps them feel satiated and full, while often preventing symptoms of digestive upset such as gas or constipation.
Useful for transitioning from formula to solid foods
Many of the nutrients present in oatmeal provide babies with the energy needed to grow and develop and can be a great first step in making the transition to solid food. While formula contains all the nutrients needed at the early stages of development it is important to introduce a more diverse diet to your little one as they age. Oatmeal is a nourishing and hearty food item that promotes early healthy eating habits.
Please be aware that this information is based on general trends evidenced in babies, it is in no way medical advice. Your baby's doctor should be your first source of information and advice when considering any changes to your child’s diet, and when choosing your child’s formula. Always consult your pediatrician prior to making any decisions about your child’s diet or if you notice any changes in your child.
Disclaimer:Breastfeeding is the best nutrition for your baby because breast milk provides your child with all the essential nutrients they need for growth and development. Please consult your pediatrician if your child requires supplemental feeding.