Your questions on baby formula answered
Breastmilk is considered the ultimate baby food—but there are times and situations when it’s not possible to provide breast milk. That’s when baby formula comes in and plays a vital role in helping feed your baby.
There are many types of formula, and it can be helpful to understand the different types and how they are used. Infant formula types include cow or soy milk-based formula as well as formulations designed for babies and toddlers with specific health needs such as milk protein allergies. In this Facebook Live event – supported by Kabrita, the world’s largest manufacturer of goat milk formula—Dr. Sara Connolly and Annie Salsberg, director of content and medical marketing from Kabrita, discuss how to support healthy toddler nutrition with the right toddler formula. To see the whole Facebook Live event, scroll to the bottom of the page!
Tips for choosing formula
The good news is that there is no “best” option when choosing formula. Thanks to strict regulations by the Food and Drug Administration, all formula sold in the United States must meet certain nutritional standards, meaning that any normal formula will provide your baby with all necessary nutrients. You can also buy enhanced formulas that include ingredients like omega-3 fatty acids, probiotics, and prebiotics. Standard formulas made from soy milk, cow’s milk, and goat’s milk (for toddlers) are all readily available. Some babies and toddlers with allergies or certain medical conditions might require a special hypoallergenic formula. Talk to your doctor before using one of these.
What’s in formula?
The ingredients in formula are regulated by the government to ensure that formula provides a healthy source of nutrition. The main types of infant formula in the United States are based on either cow’s milk or soy milk. Which one you buy is largely a matter of preference. Cow’s milk formulas are made from a modified and fortified cow’s milk that is easier for baby to digest and more closely resembles breast milk. Soy-based formulas are good for babies who react to cow’s milk products. Other ingredients in formula can include fortification with various supplements. If you’re concerned with any particular ingredient in your baby’s formula, it’s a good idea to ask your doctor.
Do I need an expensive formula?
No! Unless your baby has been prescribed a hypoallergenic formula, all FDA-approved formulas, including generic versions, are guaranteed to provide adequate nutrition for your baby.
How is toddler formula different than infant formula?
Toddler formula is sometimes marketed as “Stage 2” formula and generally meant for babies between 9 and 24 months of age. This formula is often provided to toddlers who aren’t having an easy transition to whole cow’s milk, and it differs from the early infant formula in a few ways. In general, toddler formula has extra calcium to support healthy bone growth, as well as higher levels of iron, natural nucleotides, and prebiotics to support healthy digestion. It is a good transition for babies who are not yet old enough to be drinking cow’s milk (about 9 months of age) but who need higher levels of important nutrients.
How is goat’s milk formula different from cow’s milk formula?
Goat’s milk formula is created from goat’s milk. It’s naturally easy to digest and may be a good choice for babies who have trouble digesting cow’s milk. The fats in goat milk are smaller than the fats in cow’s milk, which means it causes less stomach upset. Additionally, goat milk has more of the easy-on-the-tummy medium- and short-chain fatty acids, which may help reduce GI ailments. If you suspect your child is sensitive to cow’s milk proteins, ask your pediatrician about alternatives.
Kabrita non-GMO Goat Milk Formula is naturally easy to digest, modeled after breast milk, and designed to maintain the natural comfort of your little one. Kabrita is a gentle and delicious alternative to cow’s milk*, nutritionally fortified with 22 vitamins and minerals, DHA and tummy-loving prebiotic GOS. Families love Kabrita for supplementing, weaning, or when needing to switch formulas due to tummy or skin troubles.
*not suitable for cow milk protein allergies.