Breastfeeding has a whole series of benefits that cannot be doubted. However, sometimes it becomes impossible, thus making mothers resort to substitutes. The most important aspect concerning these is to provide the baby with age-specific nutrients and have no harmful effects. For this reason, parents feel compelled to research the healthiest alternatives to a mother’s milk out there.
Healthy homemade formula
Is breastfeeding not an option? Formula is definitely the most widespread option in this case, but most people dread the synthetic version available for purchase. Only the idea of having preservatives in it is so off-putting, considering that we are dealing with such a young age. It feels better if you can make it by yourself, at home. Make this nutrient dense food for newborns with raw milk from cows, organic and whole. You should then add whey, lactose, probiotic cultures, cream, fermented or regular cod liver oil, sunflower oil, coconut and olive oils, plus gelatin, filtered water and nutritional yeast flakes. Recipes are available online in various locations, so you can look up the amounts for each ingredient.
Milk drink infant formulas
If there is no mother’s milk, the easiest replacement is to reach for cow’s milk. This fails to have the same nutrient profile, though, in which case you must know what the best versions are about. There’s the natural baby formula based on cow’s milk, with a specific given range for both casein and whey. The ratio is modified by the manufacturer, so that it becomes closer to that of human milk. In addition, it is enriched with vegetable oils to provide important lipids, essential fatty acids including Omega-3 and carbohydrates from lactose. Some formulas also include prebiotics, to support the development of beneficial gut bacteria in newborns. Such formula may also be flavoured with vanilla and other essences that make it appealing and tasty to babies. Choose a brand that complies with very strict standards. However, it is possible that such formula may not be suitable to some babies. We are talking here about those with an allergy to milk. Only a qualified physician can test for it and confirm.
Organic commercial formula
When you have no time or can’t get all the ingredients, you should go for the organic version of the commercial formula, which is better than the standard one, as there are more healthy, clean and potent ingredients in it. Firstly, the milk in it is superior, since it comes from organic grass-fed cows that weren’t given an antiobiotic treatment. To purchase a good, safe product, aim for one that does not contain the following:
- synthetic preservatives, such as beta-carotene or ascorbyl palmitate
- ARA, DHA
- palm oil
- refined sugars (may be listed as syrup)
Although not identical to mother’s milk, these three alternatives are the ones that comes closest and are also the safest. Before you try these, you may want to look into milk sharing, too. Not everyone knows about the milk share version of breastfeeding, which implies sourcing natural milk from a healthy mother who has a surplus. Thus, all the nutrients are ensured and the baby is allowed to thrive. You could look into this alternative before you consider replacing natural breastfeeding.