Organic Baby Formula & Other Healthy Alternatives to Breastfeeding
As a mother I have been on every side of the breastfeeding vs. supplementing vs. organic baby formula debate. From not being able to nurse a child at all, to organic baby formula feeding, to breastfeeding with supplementation and currently I am fortunate to say that I was able to breastfeed by youngest child without supplements or bottles for the entire first year of her life.
Having been on all sides of the feeding baby spectrum I must point out how your child’s health benefits from breastfeeding:
- Breast milk is perfectly designed for your baby’s physical and mental development.
- Colostrum that is produced by the mammary glands during the first few days of a baby’s life helps guard baby against colds, flu, staph infections, polio and other viruses.
- They also benefit from appropriate jaw, teeth and speech development as well as overall facial development
- Breastfeeding diminishes the onset of type 2 diabetes in both the mother and the child.
- Babies who are breastfed are less vulnerable to allergies and heart diseases.
- Unlike formula, breast milk is able to adapt to the changing needs of your baby.
- Breast milk contains live enzymes that help babies produce important antibodies and ward off infections.
- Breast milk has just the right amount of nutrients for your baby and plays a key role in enhancing its immune system. This also improves the overall health of the mother.
And that’s just to name a few, there are so many other added benefits to breastfeeding your child, the one I like most is that it’s ALWAYS readily available. I remember packing around water, formula, bottles and that was just no fun. It’s so much easier when your baby’s meal is attached to you 😉 Having said all that, I must express that even though mother’s milk is far superior to formula, the fact of the matter is sometimes it’s just not an option. Some mothers are unable to breastfeed for medical reasons or they may have an inadequate milk supply or it may be that they’re not able to produce milk at all. Each mother is different and every situation is different and there will be times when a mother needs to supplement. In that case there are a few alternative options you may want to look into.
Healthy Alternative Options to Breastfeeding
A wonderful first option would be to find a trusted friend or a relative who might be willing to donate fresh milk or you can even find a milk bank to purchase donated milk (which has been tested).
Secondly, if that is not an option the next best thing would be to make your own formula, and personally if I had known this information with my formula fed baby, this is the direction I would have gone. Here are some great whole foods based formula recipes, based on Sally Fallon’s book Nourishing Traditions.
Organic Baby Formula
Lastly, if none of the above alternative options work for you that’s when I would look into pre-made organic baby formula. Make sure you read your labels and stay away from conventional formulas and always make sure you buy organic baby formula. Here is a good organic baby formula option. This brand of organic baby formula is suggested for a baby 12 months and older. For infants less than 12 months, use as directed by a healthcare professional.
The most important advice I could give to any new mom, is to do your research and educate yourself on breastfeeding and organic baby formula feeding and that way you can make the best decisions for you and your child.
*Note on Goat milk: Although goat milk is rich in fat, it must be used with caution in infant feeding as it lacks folic acid and is low in vitamin B12 (both are essential to growth and development). Look here and under the first recipe it will say, Variation: Goat Milk Formula which will instruct you how to make a proper goat milk recipe.