Ask Kat: Starting Solids and Rice Cereal

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As the mum of three small boys, an expert in baby products and a no-nonsense parent, resident blogger Kat Armstrong always seems to be called upon by friends, family and strangers to answer tough parenting questions. We thought it was high time she shared this knowledge with you, and her series Ask Kat was born. If you have questions for Kat, you can email her at


Dear Kat,

My baby is about to start solids but I’ve heard that even organic rice has loads of arsenic in it, and with most baby cereals being rice based, how much should I feed my baby?

Dawn, Richmond Hill


Starting solids is a very fun time! Babies love exploring the world through their mouths and it opens up a whole new form of communication with our little loves. I have heard many people worry about arsenic levels in rice cereal, and I’m here to tell you that you absolutely don’t and should not limit your baby’s first food to rice cereal! In fact, the Canada Food Guide has been updated and the best first foods for babies include oatmeal, avocado and meats! You can skip the rice cereal all together. We have subscribed to baby lead weaning, which is basically just making healthy food and offering small bite sized portions to your baby. Our youngest loves a wide variety of foods and whatever he can’t mash with his gums and few teeth generally just falls out of his mouth. As with anything, don’t leave your baby unattended while he eats as you won’t be able to see the signs of choking.

Good luck and enjoy this new phase in your baby’s life!

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