Growing concern about white rice in baby food

January 31, 2011 9:53:51 AM PST
For 50 years pediatricians have recommended white rice cereal for a baby's first solid food because it is easily digestible, gluten-free, and hypoallergenic. But Stanford pediatrician Dr. Alan Greene believes it can predispose children to childhood obesity.

Greene says parents should start their babies on pureed fruits and vegetables combined with a whole grain cereal instead of white rice.

White rice is about 94 percent starch, while brown rice contains other nutrients, including protein, essential fats and minerals.

Officials at Gerber, the top-selling manufacturer of white rice cereal in the U.S., say they are not aware of any scientific studies that support the theory that white rice cereal contributes to childhood obesity.