If you’ve been wondering why there’s been a lack of BLW posts lately, well we’ve been going through tough times with Sophie-doll.
She’s teething again, and this time it’s her top two teeth, which are giving her a lot more pain and stress than her lower two teeth did. The ache causes her to wake up screaming at night, and we’ll rush into the room to find her rubbing her gums in agony. Nothing seems to calm her down except being hugged to sleep, so very often we find ourselves co-sleeping with her.
I have nothing against co-sleeping – we just didn’t do it early on because I was worried about SIDS and rolling over her (she was an undersized baby) and after she adapted so well to sleeping on her own (she’s been sleeping in her own room since she was less than 3 months old) we left it at that.
So now we’re “enjoying” the benefits of co-sleeping and together with the super convenient cuddles and the joy of waking up to her smile comes the relentless early morning abuse – she bites my nose, drools all over my face, kicks my kidneys and yanks out my hair – but I’m going to enjoy it while I can 🙂
Anyway, besides the night time crankiness came a bigger problem – she completely lost her appetite because of the pain in her gums. She wouldn’t eat any of the fritters, pancakes etc that I prepared for her breakfast, would only take a few bites of fruit before flinging them away, and her milk intake dropped from a steady 900-1000 ml to a horribly distressing 400 ml a day, stressing me, K and our helper to no end 😦
We tried her usual favourites, Holle Millet Cereal, but she flat-out rejected it because of the blandness. Then I remembered that a while back, Nestle had sent me a new flavour from their Cerelac brand which I had been hesitant to try because it contained honey. The flavour was honey, wheat and dates and I was quite desperate to try anything to sneak her milk into her tummy so we whipped up a serving with two scoops of formula milk.
She finished the whole bowl. I could have just cried.
We think that she liked it because it has chunks and textures which are interesting enough to chew on but not so big that chomping would hurt her gums. There’s a grainy texture similar to oats (the wheat) and small pieces of dates which were pretty delicious (I always taste test before letting her try it).
Since then, it’s been our go-to every time she has no appetite. She will finish a large bowl of this and that’s how we sneak about 180ml worth of formula milk into her breakfast without her noticing 🙂
The Wheat, Honey and Dates flavour is a new one in the Nestle Cerelac Range that’s for 8 months and up.
What we loved about it:
- There are dates in it. I believe strongly in dates as a “superfood” and have been incorporating honey medjool dates into Sophie’s diet and porridge stock since she started solids. Dates are considered a “complete” food and they are packed with iron, calcium, potassium, anti-oxidants and are an excellent source of dietary fibre. Its not often I see baby food with dates in them so this was a welcome surprise. When she was consuming this we didn’t have to supplement her diet with the little bit of prune juice I usually give to help her bowel movement.
- There is texture – most baby cereals are just mush and for a baby like Sophie-doll who can take chunks, solid fruit, and loves to chew this was a lot more appealing than the usual slushy stuff. Just right for those teething pains but enough texture to keep her interested.
- There is honey. This was actually a concern for us because we were under the impression that babies under 1 year old should not consume honey. However, the Nestle people have reassured us that it is processed honey and that there is a very low chance of baby being allergic or rejecting it. The health benefits of honey are pretty well known!
- The cereal meets 45 per cent of baby’s daily calcium needs and over 50 per cent of baby’s iron intake in one serving. This is perfect for worried parents like me who are weaning and don’t know if my baby is getting enough vitamins, minerals, calcium and iron. It’s also DHA fortified for good brain development.
What we didn’t love about it:
- One of the ingredients is the sugar sucrose. I don’t know why the cereal needed added sugar when dates and honey are already very sweet, but I was quite disappointed when I saw this as I do not like extra sugar than what’s already in the fruits, puffs and yoghurt that we give her as snacks.
- Palm oil is one of the ingredients. It’s not stated whether the palm oil is organic or ethically farmed but this is a cause I am passionate about – unethically farmed “conflict” palm oil has been directly linked to deforestation in Indonesia and Malaysia as well as Mom and Baby orang-utans being killed in the process of clearing land for palm oil.
Sophie-doll really enjoyed the cereal and it was a lifesaver for us when she was displaying no appetite and losing weight.
Despite containing sucrose, I do think that overall it is a good cereal product with sound nutritional value and the fact that it incorporates dates is a real big plus point for me. I will re-purchase the next time she is having one of her food strikes, but I wouldn’t give it to her on a daily basis because of the sugar. If I do, I would cut out snacks from her diet for the rest of the day so she doesn’t take too much sugar a day.
I would recommend this as a part of a rotating breakfast staple for your baby – maybe once or twice a week. It’s easy to make and easy to feed!
Thank you Nestle for sending this cereal over for us to try 🙂
It retails at $5.50 at most retail supermarkets!
[Disclaimer : The Little Bow Girl was given a box of Nestle Cereal Wheat, Honey and Dates to test and review. No monetary rewards were given. All views expressed are purely my own. Any queries on the product should be posed to the manufacturer, provider or party in question.]