weanin off commercial formula and feeding bottle with milk

Meet the major part of your baby’s requirements through whole foods.

It’s a well-established fact that mother’s milk is the best for infants and contains all essential components to support growth and development. Though exclusive breast feeding is what is recommended strongly, there would be scenarios where it becomes less possible, suitable or solely adequate. In such cases, it is a fair decision to choose infant formulas that closely resemble breast milk.

You would have also probably started your baby on commercial formulas during the latter half of the lactation period, to compliment nutrients as the child is trying out different foods. But once your baby starts complimentary foods, it’s important that we wean them off the formula feeding gradually. Following are few pointers to keep in mind:

  • Commercial Formulas can be slowly tapered down after a baby has started with solids, as the nutritional requirements can be met with whole foods.
  • As the child progresses into a proper eating pattern, wean them off the formula. It can be switched to whole milk after the child is one year old, if the child can tolerate milk.
  • Continuing formula feeding can make the baby eat less whole foods if it forms the major part of his/ her diet.
  • Infant formulas are usually sweet and babies tend to get dependent on its flavour. They would drink more and before we notice there is a possibility that it may contribute to excess calories. This can lead to the baby gaining more weight than what is expected.
  • Continuous dependence on formula feeds has been shown to be associated with increased BMI in infants. Body composition changes have also been observed and the gain could be fat mass or lean mass at different stages of the baby’s development.
  • It’s better to get the babies slowly accustomed to natural food and it’s flavour, so they enjoy eating nutritious whole food that support their growth and development.
  • If a child is lactose intolerant, lactose free formula feeds can be continued but ensuring that it doesn’t replace whole foods as the major contributor to the child’s nutrient requirements.

How a child is weaned and started on complimentary foods can have an influence on the child’s health later on in life. Therefore it’s important to pay attention to progressive weaning of infant formulas as the child gradually takes up solid whole foods.


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