Parents Are Being Misled
The F.D.A. maintains a red list of international infant formulas that will be detained if they are imported into the United States because they fail to meet the F.D.A.s nutrient and labeling requirements. It includes formulas from HiPP and Holle.
But third-party vendors keep bringing them into the country. The formulas can be found on eBay, European websites that ship to the United States and American websites that import the formula for commercial use despite the F.D.A.s restrictions. And once this formula leaves a companys official distribution channel, the chain of control is lost, said Dr. Anthony F. Porto, a pediatric gastroenterologist and associate professor of pediatrics at Yale University who was one of Dr. DiMaggios co-authors.
Holles website even includes a disclaimer for consumers in the United States.
We regret that we are not able to address any of your concerns, the website says, adding that if customers in the United States have purchased Holle from a retailer not listed on the companys homepage, kindly direct your inquiry at the retailer from whom you have purchased the product.
The laws on infant formula importation are somewhat hazy. While Customs and Border Protection says on its website that commercial imports of baby formula require registration with the F.D.A., it also notes that these requirements do not apply to foodaccompanying a traveler into the U.S. or sent by an individual to someone in the U.S.
How Do I Bottle Feed My Baby
- Cuddle or hold your baby close. Your babys head should be higher than their body. Support your babys head to make it easier for them to swallow
- Let your baby decide how much they would like to drink. Do not rush them or force them to finish the bottle
- Hold the bottle so most of the nipple is in the babys mouth
- Tilt the bottle just a little, keeping it almost flat. Its easier for your baby to manage the flow of formula. Some air in the nipple will not cause a problem for your baby
- Gently burp your baby after feeding. If they have a lot of gas, burping your baby half-way through feeding may help
- Do not prop the bottle or put your baby to bed with a bottle. Your baby may drink too much or too little and it can cause choking, ear infections and tooth decay . For more information, see HealthLinkBC File #19 Dental Care for Your Infant and Toddler
- Your baby might try to hold the bottle but will not be able to feed themself until later in their first year. When your baby can feed themself, try offering the formula in a cup
Can I Prepare Formula In Advance
Its best to make the bottle right before giving it to your child. But that can be a hassle in the middle of the night.
During the daytime, I recommend that you make the bottle roughly before youre going to feed it, Adler says. But for overnight feeds, its convenient to make bottles up before you go to bed and put them in the fridge. Theyll stay good for 24 hours, so you can quickly grab one at 3 a.m.
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Whats The Best Formula For My Baby
The vast selection of formulas on the store shelves can be dizzying and more than a little confusing. Here are some smart tips to help you find the right one for your baby:
- Check with a pediatrician. Your baby’s doctor can help you narrow the formula field, so ask for a recommendation first. Every baby is different, and while the majority of newborns do best on standard cow’s milk-based formula, a small percentage may need something special because of low birth weight, an allergy or an intolerance, for instance.
- Steer clear of low-iron formulas. The AAP and most pediatricians recommend that babies drink iron-fortified formula for the first year to prevent anemia.
- Don’t assume that special formulas are better formulas. If you’re considering a specialty formula say, one that’s soy-based always ask the doctor before you stock up. Specialty formulas tend to be much more expensive and aren’t always necessary.
- Be wary of switching formulas too quickly. It may be tempting to try a new type of formula the minute your munchkin spits up. But spitting up doesn’t necessarily signal a problem with what a baby’s eating . Most pediatricians recommend staying with a formula for at least a week instead of switching too frequently, which can cause digestive issues.
Products On The Market
The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends exclusive breastfeeding for about 6 months, followed by continued breastfeeding as other foods and drinks are introduced with continuation of breastfeeding for one year or longer as mutually desired by mother and infant. While breastfeeding is strongly recommended and many mothers hope to breastfeed their infants, many infants in the U.S. rely on infant formula for some portion of their nutrition.
Infant formula comes in three forms:
- Powder Must be mixed with water before feeding.
- Liquid concentrate Must be mixed with an equal amount of water before feeding.
- Ready-to-feed Requires no mixing.
The FDAs nutrient specifications for infant formulas are set at levels to meet the nutritional needs of infants, and formula manufacturers generally set nutrient levels that are above the FDA minimum requirements. Thus, babies fed infant formulas do not need additional nutrients unless they are fed a low-iron formula.
The infant formulas currently available in the U.S. are labeled as either Infant Formula with Iron or Additional Iron May Be Necessary. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that formula-fed infants receive an Infant Formula with Iron as a way of preventing iron-deficiency anemia.
If you have concerns about infant formula, contact your health care provider and FDA at 1-888-INFO-FDA , or you can file a report online at MedWatch.
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How Much Formula Should A Baby Eat
Start your newborn out slowly. For the first week or so, your baby will probably take about 1 to 3 ounces at each feeding every three to four hours or on demand. Gradually increase the ounces, adding more as the demand becomes greater, but never push your baby to take more than he wants.
A very general rule of thumb is to take your baby’s weight and multiply it by 2.5 that’s the total number of ounces of formula to feed your baby over the course of a 24-hour period. So if your baby weighs 10 pounds, he should be drinking roughly 20 to 25 ounces per day or about 3 to 4 ounces every four hours.
Need more guidance? Check in with your pediatrician about how much to give your baby.
Do Not Give Too Much Priority To The Price
Some mothers believe that milk powder is perfect for their child if it is expensive. Guess what, many expensive brands supply poor quality milk powder. It can cause gestational health issues and you may experience many other health problems.
Buy only a top-rated product to provide top-quality formula milk to your child. It wont affect your childs good health. You can feed it with breast milk to keep your baby full and healthy.
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Dos And Don’ts Of Making Up Formula Feeds
- Do follow the manufacturers’ instructions very carefully, as they vary as to how much water and powder to use.
- Do not add extra formula powder when making up a feed. This can make your baby constipated or dehydrated. Too little powder may not give your baby enough nourishment.
- Do not add sugar or cereals to your baby’s formula.
- Never warm up formula in a microwave, as it may heat the feed unevenly and burn your baby’s mouth.
How Long Does Formula Last After Being Prepared
Generally, you want as little time as possible between preparing the bottle and feeding it to your child. Any prepared formula mixing powder or concentrate with water or opening a ready-to-feed formula bottle can sit out at room temperature for two hours. After that, you should feed it to your baby or refrigerate it, says Adler.
In the fridge:
- Unused but open ready-to-feed bottles can stay up to 48 hours.
- Unused bottles made with powdered formula can stay up to 24 hours.
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Store All Containers In A Cool Dry Place
Keep all unopened formula in a cool, dry place with the lid secured. The CDC advises against storing unopened formula in:
When preparing baby formula, be sure to follow these safety guidelines:
- Wash your hands and workspace before preparing bottles.
- Wash bottles in hot, soapy water, and then sterilize them at a rolling boil. Boiling for 5 minutes is often recommended, but follow the package directions. You can also sterilize bottles using a microwave or plug-in steamer. Cool the bottles before use.
- Never warm formula in a microwave, as doing so can result in uneven temperatures in the bottle and present a burn risk for your baby.
How Much Does Baby Formula Cost
There’s no getting around it: Formula can be expensive. You can expect to shell out between $1,200 and $1,500 on it before your baby’s first birthday. That breaks down to around $100 to $125 a month.
Prices vary depending on the type of formula you use , and specialized formulas can be up to 20 percent more expensive than the standard, iron-fortified, cow’s-milk variety.
The least expensive option is powdered formula that you mix yourself. Moving up the cost scale is liquid concentrate and finally at the top of the formula pyramid ready-to-feed formula.
Looking for a way to keep cost down but not ready to give up on convenience? One approach is to splurge on ready-to-feed formula during your baby’s first few weeks when sleep is hard to come by and the last thing you want to do is measure and mix at 2 a.m. Once your little one is sleeping more and your feeding routine is well-established, you may feel more up to the task of making bottles, so you can switch to one of the kinds you have to whip up yourself.
Another way to save on formula? Try registering on the manufacturer’s website for coupons and rebate checks. Buying generic formula will also save you some money.
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Why Might I Give My Baby Formula
There are many reasons why formula might be the best option for you and your baby. Not all women can breastfeed: some may be unable to produce enough milk for their babys needs while others may have a health condition or take medication that prevents them from breastfeeding.
Breastfeeding problems can be challenging and may even mean its unrealistic some women to continue.
Other women choose not to breastfeed, or they may not always be with their baby, such as when they are returning to work.
Some women may not breastfeed if they have experienced sexual abuse that involved their breasts since this can trigger trauma. Understandably, mothers may not share this as the reason why they feed their baby formula.
Once You Prepare Formula From Powder How Long Does It Stay Good At Room Temperature
Once you mix water and formula powder to create that magical elixir that nourishes your sweet babe, the countdown clock starts ticking. As a general rule, the bottle will last for 2 hours at room temperature, untouched and unheated.
But check the label instructions for some brands, manufacturer instructions say a bottle is only considered safe for 1 hour at room temperature once mixed. It may depend on whether the brand is following American Academy of Pediatrics or
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Other Safety Issues To Keep In Mind
Formula Preparation: Use water from a safe source to mix with powdered infant formula. If you are not sure if your tap water is safe to use for preparing infant formula, contact your local health department or use bottled water. If your baby is very young , was born prematurely, or has a weakened immune system, contact your infants pediatrician to find out if you need to take extra precautions in preparing your infants formula. Use the amount of water and number of powder scoops listed on the instructions of the infant formula label. Be sure to use the scoop provided by the manufacturer. Always measure the water first and then add the powder. If the formula is not being fed immediately, refrigerate it right away, keep refrigerated until feeding, and use within 24 hours. Discard any formula left in the bottle after your infant has finished a feeding.
Bottles & Nipples: Bottles, rings, caps, and nipples need to be clean and sanitized. To learn more about how to properly clean your babys bottles and other feeding supplies, visit the Centers for Disease Control webpage How to Clean, Sanitize, and Store Infant Feeding Items.
Use By Date: This is the date up to which the manufacturer guarantees the nutrient content and the quality of the formula. After this date, a package or container of infant formula should not be fed to infants. FDA regulations require this date to be specified on each container of infant formula.
Milk Powder Based On Cows Milk
Most brands offer formula milk powder based on cows milk. Cows milk is considered quite harmful for babies under 1 year of age. However, cow milk-based formula contains ingredients that make it easy to digest.
This types milk powder provides your baby with the best balance of protein, carbohydrate, and other nutrients. Thus, your childs digestive system digests the consumed milk and absorbs essential nutrients.
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How Do I Prepare My Baby’s Bottles
Prepare your baby’s formula by mixing water and the appropriate amount of powdered infant formula. The packaging on the side of the formula container will tell you how much to use. Carefully follow the directions. You can use tepid tap water, as long as your local or state health departments have labeled it as safe to drink.
If you’re concerned about your water, you may sterilize it to kill germs. Here’s how:
- pour cold tap water into a teapot or saucepan
- place pot on the stove over medium heat
- bring water to a rolling boil, and let boil for about a minute
- let the water cool until it’s at room temperature
Test to see if the water is cool enough for your baby to drink by shaking a few drops of water on the inside of your wrist. If it stings, it’s still too hot. Once water has cooled, don’t let it sit longer than 30 minutes before adding it to the formula.
Once prepared, the formula is ready to feed to your baby immediately without additional refrigeration or warming. Formula that’s been prepared should be consumed or stored in the refrigerator within 1 hour. If it has been at room temperature for more than 1 hour, throw it away. And if your baby doesn’t drink all the formula in the bottle, throw away the unused portion do not save it for later.