Organic baby cereal incorporates probiotics and omega-3

By Karen Willmer

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags Immune system Nutrition

A processor claims to have launched the first
organic cereal for babies that is fortified with probiotics
and omega-3.

Nurture claims its Happybellies range of organic oatmeal, rice and multi-grain baby cereals, fortified with probiotics and DHA, will aid the early infant brain and eye development while potentially protecting against the development of future allergies, including those leading to asthma, and eczema.

Products fortified with probiotics are becoming popular due to increasing research indicating the health benefits of "friendly bacteria" that aid in digestion and boost the immune system.

DHA is an omega-3 fatty acid, which has been linked to the healthy development of a baby during pregnancy, and in brain and eye development after birth.

Nurture claims that DHA is only available though breast milk or fortified infant formulas, and so the baby will have to get this from other sources once it moves to solid food, making its Happybellies range beneficial.

"The stakes are higher today -- food allergies are increasing in number of affected children and severity, poor eating habits at an early age, deficient immune systems, asthma, attention problems, and early age obesity seems to be more common than ever before," said Nurture's founder Shazi Visram.

"We see the Happybellies line as part of a necessary solution in easing the myriad of health problems children are susceptible to today."

The company said the cereals are certified as organic in the US and are suitable for vegetarian families because the DHA is obtained from a plant rather than a fish source.

The cereal will be available across the US from October 2008.

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