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Health Benefits of Oats for Babies

  • November 9, 2020
  • MKB Team

Is oats good for babies? The answer is a resounding yes! Oats for babies are a great food option being rich in minerals, vitamins, fibre and antioxidants. They provide the much needed energy for your baby. Being light, oats also help digestion and are the only cereal that the least number of children are allergic to. Here are the health benefits of oats for babies. 

  • High in fiber: Being high in fiber and carbs, oats enable easy bowel movement and digestion. The powerful soluble form of fiber known as Beta-glucan in oats increases digestive power.
  • High in vitamins and minerals: Oats for babies are a great source of magnesium, phosphorus, iron, calcium, folate, vitamin B1 & B5.This makes oats the perfect diet for your little one.
  • High amounts of protein and fats: Did you know that oats have more protein and fats than most whole grains? Hence, oats for babies is a must for every growing baby to help gain healthy weight and muscle mass.
  • Prevents childhood asthma: An early introduction of oats to baby diet makes them immune to childhood asthma which is chronic and common in babies.
  • Oats are wholesome: Oats for babies is recommended as one serving of oatmeal makes your baby full and satisfied. 

What is oats?

The oat is a cereal grain that is rich in essential nutrients such as fiber, proteins, and vitamins. We consume oats as oatmeal and oat milk. Oatmeal is an excellent food option for babies who have been introduced to solids. 

When can babies have oats?

Oats for babies are best served once they are six to seven months old. Start off with simple oat recipes like oats porridge. When your baby has gotten used to oats porridge, you can add fruits and veggies. But, take care to introduce only one additional ingredient at a time to discover your baby’s likes and dislikes, and also check for allergies if any.

Benefits of Oats for Infants

There are many health benefits of oats for infants. 

Bone Development and Neurological Functioning

The minerals present in oats are a must for the development of your infant. Let’s take a look at the nutritional content of oats. While calcium and phosphorus build bone strength, iron maintains haemoglobin levels to check anaemia. Potassium and sodium help develop the neurological functions in the body. Magnesium helps generate energy and improves dental and bone health.

Enables Healthy Growth

Vitamins like folate, vitamin B6, vitamin K, vitamin E, thiamin, riboflavin, and niacin make oats the right supplement for the growth and development of your baby. 

Lowers the Risk of Attack by Free Radicals

The antioxidants in oats reduce the risk of attack by free radicals in the body. Hence, oats are an integral part of an infant’s diet.

Provides Energy

100 grams of oatmeal provides 400 kcal of energy for babies. This energy is needed by infants in their developmental stage. 

Helps Digestion

The presence of dietary fibre in oats aids bowel movement in infants. As your baby’s digestive system is still in the developing stage, oats for infants helps the digestive process without straining the baby’s system.

Types of oatmeal

Rolled oats

Rolled oats is probably what you think of when someone mentions oats. These are basically oat flakes obtained from whole oat grain. Rolled oats are made by steaming dehulled (without skin) oat grains and then running them through a roller before drying. Rolled oats are available in two varieties, slow-cooking and fast-cooking oats.

Coarse oat flour

Whole oat grain is pounded to form a coarse type of flour that is packed with fiber. An infant oat cereal mix is most likely to have oat flour as it mixes well with hot or boiling water.

Instant oats

Instant oats is the most processed type of oats. The oat grain is boiled, rolled, and then dried before packaging. Instant oats are semi-cooked and come in the form of ready-to-eat baby cereals that one can make just by adding hot water.

Dehulled whole oat grain

Dehulled whole oat grain is also known as whole oat grain. They are the least processed unlike instant oats which are processed the most. These are raw oats in their purest form, with 100% of their nutritional value still intact.

Steel-cut oatmeal

When whole oat grains are cut into small bits by powerful steel blades they are known as steel-cut oats. They have the same nutritional value of whole oat grains but they cook faster because the grain is broken into smaller pieces.

Did you enjoy reading this article? Let us know if you have any suggestions regarding the health benefits of oats for babies. We’d love to hear from you and share your inputs with everyone else. Do write in!


You ask and we answer!

What are oats made of?

Sharon Gomes, Goa.

Oatmeal is a type of porridge made from milled, steel-cut, or rolled oat grains. An ancient cereal grain, oats come in many forms—from rolled oats to instant oatmeal to whole oat grains—but all start as seeds of the oat plant.

Is it good to eat oatmeal every day?

Farida Zaini, Santacruz, Mumbai.

Yes. They're a gluten-free whole grain and a great source of important vitamins, minerals, fiber and antioxidants. Studies show that oats and oatmeal have many health benefits. These include weight loss, lower blood sugar levels and a reduced risk of heart disease.

What are the side effects of eating oats?

Mia Sharma, Noida.

Oats can cause intestinal gas and bloating. To minimize side effects, start with a low dose and increase slowly to the desired amount. Your body will get used to oat bran and the side effects will likely go away.

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