What do people who follow the paleo diet recommend when it comes time to feed your baby rice cereal. As alot of us know in the American culture this is our babies first meal. Help!!?
My baby's first food was bananas, then avocado and sweet potatoes. There's no need to feed a baby rice cereal; it's just sort of the status quo, like jarred baby food, which is completely unnecessary. My baby never had any jarred baby food -- I just mashed up real food.
You might want to look into baby-led weaning (http://www.babyledweaning.com/) - some people don't even feed their babies mushed-up food at all.
I started my son on egg yolks when he got his first teeth and seemed very interested in food. Here is an article by Sally Fallon and Mary Enig on feeding babies. http://www.westonaprice.org/childrens-health/feeding-babies
I never fed mine cereals.They started out with breast milk, and when they were ready for solid foods, they got purees of things like winter squash, mashed egg yolks, sweet potatoes, or whatever we were having for dinner, run through a mini grinder. Mine started eating food late, though -- none of them started solid foods till after 6 months, and my daughter didn't want to start eating solid food till closer to 9 months. Most of my colleages when I was a midwife taught that you'd know when a baby was ready for solid foods.. 'cause they'd snatch it off your plate and eat it before you could stop 'em. chuckles That's how it went with mine... they grabbed stuff off my plate, and that's what we ground up or mashed up for them to eat. Even after they started solid food, there were a lot of days that all they wanted was the breast, and we were good with that. They've all grown up strong, and are healthier than most of their peers, so I don't think missing rice cereal hurt them any.
I never fed any of my kids rice cereal or any other kind of packaged baby food either. They all went straight to table food while continuing to breastfeed. I wasn't paleo at the time, just cheap. It made no sense to me to pay all that money for little jars of pureed nastiness when we had plenty of delicious healthy food on our table already.
My little guy hated the rice cereal - so that was easy. He LOVED yams, sweet potatoes, acorn squash, avocado, turnips etc. With all I steamed them and then mashed them up with butter. And then after a couple of months when he seemed like he wanted to feed himself I would steam broccoli or make sweet potato 'fries' and let him try to eat them.
Don't listen to conventional wisdom - you'r doc may try to force that stuff down your throat, but if you repeatedly bring in a healthy baby he or she will change their tune!
Babies don't create the enzyme amylase, which breaks down starch till they're over a year old. Bananas contain that enzyme so they are an acceptable first starch for the under 1 set. Rice is totally inappropriate for infants. IMHO fruit and veggies are much better sources of carbs for little ones... And obviously breast milk.
I wonder if the main reason rice cereal is recommended is just because its a milder version of the junk older kids and adults will most likely eat, so why not get them used to it. Other than that, I don't see a reason for rice cereal.
for our 9 month old the mainstays have been pastured egg yolks (this was the first solid food basically), beef liver, avocado, broccoli and other veggies, tubers, ghee, coconut milk kefir, coconut oil, cod liver oil, chicken breast, sardines (starting around 8 months), bone broth, papaya, banana (nanners!), and little tastes of whatever meats we might be eating. she enjoys most all of what we offer, or if not its just getting the right mix mashed.
it's pretty cheap and easy to mash up real nutrient dense foods from your own food supply, and especially mobile if you get these:
Here's what I did with my last baby.
Not speaking for paleo in general, but with my latest child, now 17 months, I started sharing broth with him, or juices from my meat, when he started asking for it (about 4 months old iirc). Over a couple of months this morphed to sharing my meat with him by chewing for him, or mincing finely, then added yogurt and eggs, and gave him jerky to chew. He now eats mostly meat, with occasional vegetables or fruit.