Monday, December 4

Do infant formulae live up to their nutritional claims?

Toddler formulas are costly, unnecessary, and potentially unhealthy.

Once babies reach the age of one, they no longer need infant formula as their nutritional needs can be met through solid foods. Cow's milk or fortified plant milk like soy milk can be perfectly suitable for them without the need for excessive consumption.

In a recent report by the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) in 2023, it was found that toddler milks do not provide any additional benefits for healthy growth and development. It's understandable that some parents may feel hesitant to transition from formula to cow's milk, believing that formula is more nutritious or easier to digest. However, the marketing strategies used by formula companies frequently influence these beliefs.

Toddler formulas marketed as "follow-up formulas," "transition formulas," or "growing-up milks" are not medically necessary and are mainly designed to retain customers past the age of one. As the AAP emphasizes, some toddler formulas can actually be worse than cow's milk. Parents should be aware of the actual needs of older infants and toddlers and not let marketing claims influence them.

It's worth noting that specialized formulas for children over 12 months with specific medical conditions are not the focus of this discussion.

Toddler formulas are not subject to FDA regulation, unlike infant formulas. Infant formulas have strict nutritional requirements and are subject to regular inspections. On the other hand, toddler formulas are not required to prove their claims about nutritional benefits, leading to wide variation in their composition.

This lack of regulation is concerning because some toddler formulas can be unhealthy, with inadequate or excessive protein content and added sweeteners. These sweeteners can contribute to the development of a child's preference for sugary foods and potentially increase the risk of obesity. Moreover, toddler formulas are often more expensive than cow's milk, creating an unnecessary financial burden for families.

Instead of relying on toddler formulas, it is recommended to focus on the healthy diet groups for toddlers. Encourage a balanced diet that includes fruits, vegetables, whole grains, protein sources (such as meat, fish, beans, and nut butters), and dairy or dairy substitutes fortified with calcium and vitamin D. It is also important to limit added sugars and, after the age of two, reduce the consumption of unhealthy fats. By establishing healthy eating habits early on, we can set children on the path to a lifetime of good nutrition.




  1. Gracias por los consejos.

  2. I totally agree. It's hard to find healthy food at the stores nowadays. Natural is best but then it's not always convenient for parents too.

  3. Very interested. Have a nice weekend.

  4. An interesting post all my girls were feed formula from around 10 weeks of age before then they had expressed breast milk as I had a lot of trouble trying to breast feed. I myself was feed cows milk from birth at first it was diluted lessening the dilution as I aged till at 12 months I went onto full strength cows milk

    1. Thank you for sharing your experience. It's interesting to hear about different approaches to infant feeding.

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