The Surprising Ingredient In Infant Formula Most People Don’t Know About

When you’re expecting a baby, there are so many things to worry about and plan ahead for. When it starts getting down to the wire, how you will choose to feed your baby starts to come to mind. Although breastfeeding is the healthiest and most beneficial choice for baby, it may not be the route you choose. Many parents use infant formula, either by choice or necessity.

There are several reasons you may not breastfeed, or maybe you are unable to. Maybe you will alternate between breast milk and formula. The bottom line is that you want what is best for your baby. For some of us, that means using formula.

It can be overwhelming to choose a formula; not all are created equal; lactose-free, probiotics and organic are all things to consider when making your decision. Ultimately, all formula is designed with the health of your baby in mind, so what could be alarming to us when stumbling across the ingredients?

Corn syrup. It’s a common ingredient in infant formula. In fact, it’s often the first or second ingredient. There is a lot of debate as to whether this is a necessary and harmless ingredient, or if it is unnecessary and only setting our children up for nutritional failure later in life.

similac-label-ingredients

In my opinion, corn syrup has no place in our baby’s food. Not only is there corn syrup in the formula shown above, and not only is it the first ingredient, but it composes 42.6% of the ingredients! AND if you skip down the list, sucrose composes 10.1%. That means sugars make up a whopping 52.7% of this particular formula. I have no doubt that corn syrup is the choice of sugar due to the fact it is so inexpensive for the manufacturer.

Ironically, the manufacturer of this particular formula also manufactures a product designed to help people manage their diabetes. Another company who manufactures infant formula is also responsible for manufacturing confectioneries, sugary beverages and frozen desserts. Even prescription formula which is prescribed to infants who are preemies or have severe gastrointestinal issues has 51% sugar content.

I want to make it clear that I am not criticizing parents who choose to feed their babies formula. The FDA approves infant formula. Parents should be able to choose any one knowing that it will be a healthy choice for our baby. Some parents don’t have any other option than to use formula. They should at least be given a fair chance to choose a healthy substitute to breast milk.

corn-syrup

If you are starting to second guess commercial formula, but feel you have no other option, don’t be discouraged. Choose the formula which best fits your baby’s needs. If you are ambitious enough, you can make homemade formula, however many health care professionals don’t recommend it.  There are risks involved in making your own formula if you don’t make it properly.

Although I breastfed my children, we did make our own formula occasionally for my middle child after she turned 1. If you decide to go this route, talk to your child’s doctor. They will make sure you’re meeting all the necessary nutritional requirements.

If you decide this is too much to take on or aren’t comfortable with it, you can always research formulas from home. Compare brands against each other to decide what you are most comfortable with.

When I first discovered what was in commercial formula, I was completely taken back. No one I mentioned it to knew about it either, and I began to realize that most people didn’t know.  The idea of this article is not to persuade anyone to change the way they feed their baby. Rather, I wanted to bring this information to light so people can at least make a conscious and informed decision.

How do you feel about corn syrup being in infant formula?

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