Breast is best, as what most people say. Breastfeeding is a biological progression that comes after pregnancy and delivery and is, in fact, widely advocated by health experts for the reason that breast milk has the ideal nutritional balance for babies and are dynamic by nature. The milk produced by the breasts’ ingredients changes constantly to meet the growing infant’s needs. Though as much as it is ideal to breast-fed babies, some mothers are not able to comply, and it’s normal. Some women can’t because they are medically contraindicated, some can but find it a hard time doing the activity, and some best choose not to. It could also be stressful for mothers because of the pressure put into them to provide for the child’s exclusive nourishment, for twelve long months, with only what their bodies can give. For all these reasons, the dire need for an alternative surfaced. Science, then, introduced formula-feeding.
Baby formulas are designed with high complexity since they are engineered to provide the nutrients the baby needs in place of human milk. These formulas are manufactured under certain conditions and are specifically packed with proteins, diluents, fats and carbohydrates, minerals, vitamins, and emulsifiers/stabilizers. However, choosing a formula can be confusing given the number of baby formulas different brands offer in the market in today’s time. Here are some things you need to know:
Forms of Infant Formula
This formula needs to be mixed with water (in pre-measured amounts) and is the most affordable and most common among the three. It is often sold in cans, often in 90 to 200 ounces, and cartons.
Concentrated Liquid Formula
This formula, on the other hand, is diluted with an equal part of water. It requires mixing and shaking and costs more than the powdered formula.
This requires the least effort but is also the most expensive among the three forms of infant formula. Despite the price, it saves you from the danger of contamination and it leaves no room for errors in the preparation. It is readily made for immediate feeding.
Now that you have general knowledge regarding the choices made available for you to choose from, there are a number of things to be considered when it comes to choosing the best suited formula for your child. Below are the following that should be taken into account:
1. Don’t Let Yourself Be Swayed by its Marketing, Always Check the Label and Learn to Understand Them.
Just because it’s the most popular, doesn’t mean that it’s what you should settle for. It is necessary to know what your choice of formula ingredients, particularly the additives, are. Although all formulas are formulated to meet specific standards, their ingredients tend to slightly vary. Never just settle for what’s popular in the market, scan through its list of ingredients. Learn to familiarize the necessary nutrients your baby’s formula should contain.
2. Choose What’s Best For Your Baby
The healthier, safer and better. Nowadays, it is costly to choose the healthier options and easier to resort to what is convenient, but it is always worth it to settle for the healthiest option. Organic infant formulas have a reputation for being made out of the safest and purest ingredients. If you’re asking what difference does choosing an organic formula over a conventional formula makes, it’s that you are choosing to pick a formula for your baby that is less prone to contain refined sugars, highly processed vegetable oils, synthetic fibers and preservatives. Considering the fact that the formula you’ll choose will be your baby’s primary nutrition source, it might be smart to choose what minimizes their exposure to chemicals. Checking out a reliable source for buying best organic baby formula can be a good start. Even though it’s a pain in the pocket, it will be worth it in the long run!
There is a wide range of formulas formulated to nurse the specific needs of babies, may it be in terms of preference or how they react to it upon receiving. Listed below are the different types of infant formula you could choose from:
This type of formula is made based off cow’s milk, although altered to make it suitable for infants. The cow’s milk is treated by boiling and through other methods to make the protein easier to digest. More lactose is also added to make the concentration commensurate to the concentration of breastmilk, while the milkfat is eliminated and replaced with other fats and vegetable oils. This formula is designed to be fortified with iron. It is the most common type of formula on the market and is tolerated by most formula-fed infants.
This type of formula is made out of soya beans. It contains a protein and a specific carbohydrate, the protein present being soy, unlike the milk-based formulas. They are an occasionally suggested alternative for infants who experience lactose intolerance and/or milk allergy. It is also a formula recommended for parents who prefer a vegetarian-based dietary regimen for their baby.
This type of formula is categorized into two main types: partially hydrolyzed and extensively hydrolyzed. Partially hydrolyzed formulas take the Whey, a protein from cow’s milk, and disintegrate it into larger pieces. This type of hydrolyzed formula does not cater infants who experience an allergic reaction upon the consumption of cow’s milk, unlike extensively hydrolyzed formulas. Extensively hydrolyzed formulas, on the other hand, are hypoallergenic. These are suitable for infants who are not able to digest and those who are allergic to the whole protein in cow’s milk for its processing includes the breaking down of Casein, also a protein from cow’s milk, into smaller pieces, having it not recognized as an allergen to most babies who are allergic to cow’s milk.
This type of formula is manufactured for those with certain disorders and/or diseases, and generally for those who have particular needs. Specific formulas that fall under this type are also made for either low-birth-weight (LBW) or premature babies.
Making your choices as you dive into parenthood for the first time could be a tricky task. Settling for what is best and suited for your baby in every aspect will always be your primary goal. Although it requires a lot of discernment in choosing the right and best formula for your child, rest your worries in the fact that the formulas being laid down in the market have passed a certain criteria to ensure that your baby gets the necessary nutrients for growth and development. Getting a professional advice from your pediatrician could also be of great help.