Recently, rice has been found to contain arsenic. There is plenty of information online, and you’ll find that the amount of arsenic in different types of rice varies greatly. Although doctors on TV and other sources have been telling us it’s still OK to still eat rice, why take the chance–especially with our babies! I recommend not eating any rice when there are so many other whole grains available. That goes for any foods containing rice–infant cereal, breakfast cereal, brown rice syrup, cooked rice, granola with rice, rice milk, etc.–read the ingredients list on the label.
A healthy diet is about variety. Just as babies (and adults) should eat a variety of organic fruits and veggies to help ensure we get a vast array of nutrients, we should eat a variety of organic whole grains and legumes (beans, peas, lentils). You shouldn’t feed carrots, and only carrots. to your baby for veggies and you shouldn’t feed only brown rice for whole grains.
The Super Baby Food Diet is about eating a vast array of healthy organic whole foods. Quinoa, millet, and oats are other super whole grains recommended for Super Porridge, as well as those listed in the Super Baby Book on page 222. Page 235 has a list of legumes. On page 215, see my tips for mixing several whole grains and legumes together to ensure your baby will have a variety of these foods in their high-protein Super Porridge (2 parts grains + 1 part legumes). Make Super Porridge even more healthy by sprinkling freshly-ground seeds and nuts (if your baby has no allergies) into cooked Super Porridge. (Freshly-ground immediately before feeding because once seeds and nuts are cracked open, their super healthy oils/fats start becoming rancid.) See Page 135 for a list of seeds and nuts. If you can’t find these foods in your supermarket, visit your local natural foods store. You can also find these foods online; you’ll have to pay shipping, but you might find it’s worth it when you consider your time and energy, since you don’t have to use gas and bundle up baby or get a sitter. (I always buy from www.BreadBeckers.com, a website you can trust for only the highest quality foods.) You may even want to join a food coop to buy in bulk and save $.
Parents who are concerned because they have been feeding large amounts of brown rice to their babies should talk with their pediatricians. Rice is one of the grains that is gluten-free, therefore many people might be eating it frequently. The American Academy of Pediatrics has information about arsenic at http://www.aap.org; search for “arsenic.” We should expect more information about arsenic in rice as more studies are completed.
On CBS’s Sunday morning this past week, Cindy Crawford was featured. We love Cindy Crawford and not just because she is a fan of Super Baby Food and appeared with Ruth Yaron on a segment of Good Morning America, but also because she’s a wonderful gal..smart, bright, caring, and a giver.
We thought it would be appropriate to share the segment of Good Morning America where Cindy teaches Charlie Gibson, and of course, the audience, how to make our favorite, Super Porridge! Enjoy!
To learn more about The White Out Campaign, you can visit Dr. Greene’s website: DrGreene.com.
In a recent comment a mom asks about dessicated liver. We thought it was a great question and that we would ask Ruth for her thoughts…
The mom asks:
I really love your book. Thanks for such a great work.
I’d like to start using desiccated liver powder for my 8 months old daughter but I cant find the powder version of it, all I can find is the tablet version.
Can you recommend a brand/company who makes powder form of the desiccated liver?
Desiccated liver is a powdered nutritional supplement made from dried liver. It is high in vitamin B12 (a nutrient sometimes claimed to be lacking in vegetarian diets) and other B vitamins. You can introduce desiccated liver to your baby beginning at about 8 months. Add 1/2 to 1 teaspoon to your baby’s Super Porridge daily or several times a week to make up for whatever you feel your baby would be missing in a meatless diet.
I recommend the Now brand. Please go light on the liver powder so baby does not get too much iron. The nutrition section of Super Baby Food discusses the daily recommended amounts of iron. The iron is “heme” iron and is very well-absorbed, unlike iron from plants. You can also buy the tablets and crush them by putting them in ziploc bag and crushing with a spoon
Check back at the Super Baby Food Blog for more information for feeding your baby the very best!
Moms Want To Know About:
Feeding Oatmeal to their baby.
Is my 6 month old too young for oatmeal porridge?
No, he’s not too young, you can start him on oatmeal Super Porridge, just make sure it’s very smooth so he won’t choke on any lumps. Get the organic steel cut oats or just plain oatmeal flakes from the natural foods store or the part of the supermarket that has “health” foods. Quick cook oatmeal or the brands processed with sugar aren’t as healthy as plain, unprocessed oatmeal. It is perfectly normal and very common for babies to get constipated when they start eating solid foods, especially on whole grains because of the fiber.
Here’s what to do about constipation: Feed him about 2 ounces of commercial jarred baby prunes with the oatmeal. Only two ounces, though, or you’ll have poop up the back ! With each meal, offer your baby a few tablespoons of plain water in a cup. Let him get used to and like drinking plain water, not juice. Thanks for writing!
“You don’t mention phytic acid in your book (Super Baby Food), but I have read that its presence in whole grains can limit the absorption of nutrients. Do you recommend sprouting grains before grinding them for super baby porridge, or soaking? Thank you!
Great question! Actually, I sometimes do sprout my own grains before using them to bake bread or for porridge so that the phytic acid goes away and so that the nutrient content increases. I also grind my own grains into flour for baking using the Whisper Mill or the Nutrimill grain grinders. Grains must be totally dry before you use a grain mill or it gets ruined. I use an Excalibur dehydrator to dry my sprouted grains before grinding in my mill.
When soaked, the phytic acid takes a while to go away if the grains are whole kernels–about 8-12 hours. However, the grains for Super Porridge are first ground to a powder, not a fine powder, but a powder. The finer the powder, the faster the phytic acid disappears because more water comes into contact with the surface area of the powder. For well-ground flour like you would use in breads, it takes only 5 minutes of soaking to remove the phytic acid.
Grinding the grains to a course powder is perfect for Super Porridge. Much of the phytic acid goes away when boiled in water, but some may remain. Phytic acid is a phytonutrient that is good for us, so we should get some of it in our diets.
Because Super Porridge is only coarsely ground, it is low on the glycemic index scale, which is good. The lower the GI, the better the food is for us because it doesn’t shoot up blood sugar and cause the pancreas to quickly produce lots of insulin. An overworked pancreas can lead to insulin resistance and maybe even full-blown diabetes.
So the bottom line is, you can sprout your grains, but only for a day or so because otherwise they will be too difficult to grind with longer sprouts. And the grains must be totally dry before you grind them. If you don’t have a dehydrator, you can dry them in a low oven- at about 200 degrees so that all bacteria that might start growing are killed.
Happy sprouting and grinding! Thanks for writing!
When you start a baby on solid food for the very time, it is not always smooth sailing. Here’s a question from a mom about starting her second baby on solid food and Ruth’s answer. Maybe YOUR feeding solid question will be answered too!
Love Super Baby Food! My first child is a terrific eater and I know it is from using your book. However baby number two is presenting a bit of a challenge. She’s 6 months and becoming really gassy after rice cereal. I don’t get it. I am still nursing and am very careful about what I ingest. We haven’t been able to really start other solids like avocado and banana because it is such a battle. Could it be the rice cereal? We were about the start the super porridge, but now I’m not so sure. Thoughts?
NO BATTLES! Wait a week and then gently offer again. Try banana well mushed and liquidy-tastes like breastmilk. Ages 6 and 7 months are for LEARNING TO EAT. Not until 8 months will you baby actually need calories from solid foods to supplement breastmilk. Wait a few days, try again, and let me know how things worked out. Never force or push! (Rice cereal and gas – I’m not surprised. I’d be willing to bet that the cereal as first food will be changed to banana some day.) Make sure your baby is getting an iron supplement and a vitamin D supplement-ask your pediatrician.
If you have any feeding solid food questions, do not hesitate to leave a comment here. Ruth would love to hear from you and to help.
One of our fabulous Super Baby Food parents asked about saving time by grounding up the grains for Super Baby Porridge and Freezing for use later. we thought it was such a great question that we would share Ruth’s answer.
Regarding the freezing of Ground grains for use later, Ruth says:
I’m not really sure how long (ground grains) will keep in the deep freeze after grinding. I know that I put in my book, Super Baby Food, that they will keep for two months at refrigerator temperatures, so in the deep freeze, figure about six months or more.
Please note that in the next edition of my book (due out soon), also entitled Super Baby Food, that I will be recommending that you do NOT grind in advance. I will be recommending that you grind them immediately before cooking. The reason for this is the fresher the grain and the more recently that it has been broken open by grinding, the more nutrients it has and the less nutrient loss to air, light, and heat. So if you have a blender/grinder, I would suggest you use it daily. If you do not have a blender/grinder and borrow someone else’s to do batch grinding, then it might be more convenient if you store in the fridge up to 2 months or in the deep freezer in good-quality freezer containers for about 6 months.
Thanks for writing!
In Part 1, we reviewed some baby first foods. Here are some other great first food choices.
Mashed ripe banana is an excellent first food for baby. Bananas are nutritious and very easy for your baby to digest. Many other cultures use bananas exclusively as their first baby food. Try to buy only organically-grown bananas.
Mashed, ripe avocado is also an excellent first food for baby. Avocados are extremely nutritious and contains the fatty acids that your baby needs for brain development.
Cooked, mashed sweet potato is another favorite first food for babies who are at least 4 months old. It, too, is highly nutritious and filled with beta carotene (vitamin A).
Yogurt is a good first baby food for babies who are at least 6 months old. Whole milk yogurt, the plain variety, instead of low-fat yogurt, is recommended because your baby needs fats. Remember that yogurt, in the under 1 year old, should not be fed in place of breastmilk or formula, but may be fed as an additional first food.
For an informative video that describes baby’s first foods, check out the video starring Ruth Yaron and Cindy Crawford.
Stay tuned for more information to feed your baby right here at the Super Baby Food Blog.
If the most popular question about feeding baby is “When”, the second most popular question has got to be, “What?” In a recent post we discussed your baby’s first meal. In this post and the next, we will cover, in a bit more detail some first food choices for your baby.
The first foods you should feed your baby are those that are easily digested and least likely to trigger an allergic reaction. The most recommended first food is commercial iron-enriched baby cereal. You and your pediatrician should decide which food should be given to your baby at her very first meal.
Commercial iron-fortified baby rice cereal is the first choice of the American Academy of Pediatrics. Rice is easily digested, is rarely an allergen, and thins readily when added to liquid. Most commercial cereals, are refined and processed. Earth’s best brand, however, is not. It is made from whole brown rice and is organic. If you would like to you a commercial brand, I suggest you use Earth’s Best.
If your baby is at least 6 months old, I recommend homemade whole grain brown rice or millet cereal as baby’s first food (ie. Super Baby Porridge). These cereals are easily digested, but your baby must be at least 6 months old before he has the necessary digestive enzymes to handle the complex carbohydrates in these cereals.
For an informative video that describes baby’s first foods, check out the video starring Ruth Yaron and Cindy Crawford.
Stay tuned for Part 2 of First Foods right here at the Super Baby Food Blog.