We are all familiar to the popular tag-line, “Breastfeeding is best for babies up to 2 years,” and although almost all mothers believe in it, some are still not able to do provide this precious milk to their newborn babies for a variety of reasons. One could be their low or even almost non-existent milk production that no matter how they massage their breasts or eat and drink foods that are known to stimulate milk in lactating women they are still not able to supply enough milk to meet the demands of their growing babies. Some are working or traveling mothers so they are not able to breastfeed their kids or even pump and store milk for them to drink. The remaining few babies who are not able to enjoy the health benefits of this kind of milk may have lost their moms or are being raised by secondary care givers. Just the same, in this day and age where everybody is busy and there are a million and one things to do, it is fortunate that there are baby formulas available that one can readily buy to feed the baby.
Commercial infant formulas are able to provide critical nutrients necessary to support a growing child unlike milk from animals or plant sources that usually do not have a healthy balance of needed vitamins and minerals. Since there is a growing demand for this type of milk, there is also a steadily increasing selection of baby formulas in the market nowadays. For one, there are numerous preparations available such as powdered formula, which is the most inexpensive type and is mixed with water; ready-to-use formula, which is a hassle-free way of feeding the baby, albeit the most expensive; and concentrated liquid formula which is also mixed with water but in smaller amount. To also give you an idea on the types of infant formula available here are few of the more popular ones:
- ·Hydrolyzed whey – this is ideal for babies who happen to have milk allergies as this product contain smaller protein fractions which make it less allergenic than regular formulas that are made up of whole proteins.
- ·Cow’s milk – majority of infant formulas have cow’s milk as main ingredient but the same is altered to resemble breast milk so that it will contain the right balance of nutrients. A lot of babies find satisfaction in this type of milk; however, there are those who exhibit allergic reaction to the protein content of cow’s milk.
- ·Lactose free – this is another special formula created specifically for babies who do not have enough of the enzyme, called lactase, that digest the milk sugar lactose. Babies with this condition and were fed with regular milk may experience extreme discomfort; lactose-free formulas prevent this from happening.
- ·Soy-based – this type is particularly useful if you don’t want your baby to have animal protein in his or her diet. This is also a viable option should the child is found to be lactose-intolerant.
It is important to note that before starting your baby on any of the type of milk mentioned above, it is still best to seek the advice of your pediatrician especially if your baby is premature. Premature babies have a different nutritional requirement and sensitivity; hence, you should not haphazardly decide without consulting a doctor.