Although, Cream of Wheat can be a very good option for most adults because it contains many healthy ingredients like vitamin B6, niacin, iron, thiamine, and folate, for babies not so much. The downside of Cream of Wheat is that it contains gluten which some babies can be sensitive or allergic to. Another downside is that Cream of Wheat contains added sugar and salt, which babies under the age of 1 shouldn’t consume as the added salt can’t be processed by their kidneys.
Hi, dear parent,
When the baby hits the 6-month mark age, you’re excited about the foods to give to your kids, and every parent’s or caregiver’s only wish is that their child eats the food offered happily and doesn’t become fussy.
So, you are on the lookout for new recipes and interesting food items for your baby, and even if you don’t eat it yourself, you’ll probably go out of your way to make and store food for your little one.
So, one day while searching on the internet or the supermarket, you came across Cream of Wheat where it mentions that it’s good for babies too.
But, being a protective parent, we stop and think about whether the Cream of Wheat is really a good, safe option for babies, considering that wheat has gluten and your little one might be sensitive or even allergic to gluten.
But, before we dwell on the positives and negatives of Cream of Wheat, let’s first understand what it is and what the ingredients are.
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What is Cream of Wheat?
Cream of Wheat is made from farina, a type of hot cereal, a derivative of wheat, and it has been milled into a fine consistency.
It can be combined with either milk or water, and you get a smooth, thick, creamy texture. You can also add different toppings or include the Cream of Wheat for different recipes like smoothies, milkshakes, or pancakes.
You can also get multiple flavors of Cream of Wheat and even to-go cups.
Is Cream of Wheat a good option for babies?
Most of the ready-to-made food items available in the market have their benefits and downsides too. The benefits usually contain a lot of healthy ingredients and vitamins, and negatives include the added preservatives.
Unless it’s a home-cooked meal for your little one, you’re always going to find some downsides in the food products available in the supermarket.
So, what are the benefits of Cream of Wheat?
One cup of cooked Cream of Wheat (241 g) contains:
- Calories: 133
- Protein: 4 grams
- Fat: 0.5 grams
- Carbs: 28 grams
- Fiber: 1 gram
- Iron: 58% of the Daily Value (DV)
- Niacin: 39% of the DV
- Vitamin B6: 38% of the DV
- Thiamine: 37% of the DV
- Riboflavin: 33% of the DV
- Folate: 33% of the DV
- Selenium: 13% of the DV
- Calcium: 11% of the DV
- Copper: 11% of the DV
The ingredient lists vary in different flavors of Cream of Wheat, like some of the products contain soy, cinnamon, almond, coconut, and cocoa.
The Cream of Wheat is low in calories and contains many nutritional ingredients and micronutrients. It’s a great breakfast option for adults as many of the vitamins help in increasing energy production, brain function, and DNA synthesis.
It also contains Selenium, a micronutrient, is known to reduce inflammation and protect against diseases.
The Cream of Wheat is also a great source of vegetarian source of iron. Iron is a mineral that the body needs for growth and development.
Iron helps transport oxygen in the body through a protein present in the red blood cells called hemoglobin. Iron is also known to reduce fatigue, improve muscle endurance, and boosts immunity.
If the body becomes deficient in iron, it can become anemic, causing only a few healthy red blood cells in the body.
So, overall, if you see the ingredients, most of them are really good for the growth and development of babies, but it does have certain few ingredients that babies shouldn’t consume.
The main three drawbacks that the Cream of Wheat consists of are sugar, salt, and gluten.
Parents can make the mistake of adding salt to the foods for your little one, trying to make it tasty, so they might eat all of it, right? Well, you’re quite wrong. It may taste bland to you because you’ve been eating so many varieties of food in your life, but your little one has only had breast milk or formula for the first 6 months of life.
So, truly, if you ask yourself, how can your little one miss something he has never experienced? There’s a reason why pediatricians do not recommend salt to babies under 1.
This can even lead to kidney diseases or even hypertension in their adult life. In addition, excessive intake of salt in childhood can lead to cardiovascular diseases, osteoporosis, and respiratory illnesses.
Even a pinch of salt added to all the meals can be dangerous as their kidneys won’t be able to function due to excessive load.
You might find many parents or grandparents stating that they’ve been adding salt to their child’s meal all the time, and their children have turned out fine. Well, firstly, we don’t know that for sure whether they’re absolutely fine or not. Secondly, it doesn’t matter what others do, you know what’s best for your kid, and well, salt isn’t one of them.
Sugar is equally bad for babies like salt. By sugar, we mean artificial sugar or ‘white sugar’ and not natural sugar present in fruits. Studies show that babies under the age of 1 who’s been fed food containing high amounts of sugar have caused.
Babies, at a very young age, if fed food that contains natural or artificial sugar, tend to prefer foods that have sugar in them, meaning they’ll prefer sugary food more.
The Cream of Wheat is a type of farina which is a cereal made out of milled wheat, and so it contains gluten.
Gluten is a group of proteins that is found in cereal grains. Your baby may be sensitive towards gluten and can experience side effects like bloating, diarrhea, constipation, and stomach pain.
Babies diagnosed with Celiac disease can experience adverse side effects.
If your family has a history of gluten allergy or gluten sensitivity, then it’s best to talk to your pediatrician about how to offer food, which has gluten in it, to your baby.
What are the best first foods to offer the baby?
You can offer mashed potatoes, avocados puree, butternut squash puree, oatmeal baby cereal, carrot puree, steamed carrot sticks, and sweet potatoes puree.
How do I know my baby is having an allergic reaction?
You need to look for signs like hives or rashes, itching, wheezing, shortness of breath, swelling of the face or tongue or lips, vomiting, diarrhea.
Can a 6-month-old baby have eggs for breakfast?
If your pediatrician recommends offering eggs, then you can offer an entire egg either in the form of puree, mash hard-boiled egg, or offer scrambled egg, but make sure not to add salt in it. If you want a liquid consistency, add breast milk or formula.
The Cream of Wheat can be a great option for breakfast for adults, but for babies, especially under the age of 1, it doesn’t offer up as a good option as it contains sugar and sodium. For babies who have a family history of gluten sensitivity should also avoid it.
Instead of the Cream of Wheat, there are many options and recipes, which are high in nutrients for the growth of the baby, that you can make at home. Consult your pediatrician to know more about the type of foods that are beneficial for your little one.