Switching from formula to cows milk - Mothering Forums
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#1 of 12 Old 05-14-2013, 02:16 AM - Thread Starter
 
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My DD just turned on at the end of April, she has been formula fed since 7 months.

 

When she was born the advice from the local health visitors and paediatricians was that you could switch to cows milk at age one.  When she was about 6 months old they then changed their mind and said that toddlers should have follow one milk until 3yrs!

 

The reason being that cows milk doesn't contain enough vitamin D or iron and too much protein.

 

Now I feel torn.  I had cows milk at a very young (too young) age but my friends 5yr old started on cows milk at 1 before the new regulations came in and he's doing just fine.

 

What would be the consequences of too much protein?  If I decide to switch to cows milk should I give my DD more meat free days?  Does this just sound like a way to get parents to boost the economy by buying super expensive formula for years?

 

Any input?


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#2 of 12 Old 05-14-2013, 02:21 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I forgot to ad that my DD was 31inches and 24 pounds at her 1yr check up.

 

I have a bit of a stash of follow on milk, say another month, maybe I could do 50/50, cows in the morning and afternoon, follow on at night?  Does anyone give their LO's vitamin supplements?...


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#3 of 12 Old 05-14-2013, 10:56 AM
 
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Personally I wouldn't rush going onto cows milk and follow the advice to keep up the formula, unless it is just too expensive for your family. Yes many children started cows milk at 1 and before and are doing just fine, but do remember that cows milk is for baby cows, and while humans do drink it and are often just fine, the formula may just be more appropriate nutritionally...


ETA my own experience with giving cows milk, when DD turned one and I started getting pressure from family to move my barely eating daughter towards weaning, I gave her cows milk.  I was a bit hesitant to do so for the reason I mentioned above, cows milk is for cows! Lo and behold, my daughter is allergic to milk! Not dairy because she eats cheese and yogurt but the milk is a no go.  Now at 15 months we are still nursing, a lot, and I just try to be mindful to get her calcium, iron and protein through what little foods she will eat. Just my $.02.


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#4 of 12 Old 05-14-2013, 02:08 PM
 
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Hi ClaireBear,

 

My ds is 18 months and has been on cow milk since he was one. He was a preemie and could not surse, so I pumped exclusively for 4 months and then when my supply ran low we switched to some formula and then all formula until he was one.

 

Personally, we hated giving our son formula so we wanted to switch to cow milk. We give our son whole, RAW milk from our neighbors and feel good about that choice for us. Our son does not appear to have any allergies at this time, but we do rotate his milk. He gets about 12 ounces of cow milk a day and 12 ounces of rice, coconut, and oat milk. This seems to work really well for him.

 

We do give him Vit D since he is getting unfortified cow milk, and we are not in the sun a lot, but we do not give any other supplements. As far as to much protein....your LO should get atleast 13 grams per day. My son does not like meat, or much of anything at the moment that is not a carb, so we struggle to get the rec amount of protein wo including the cow milk.

 

Hope this helps some. Also formula is cow milk......so most likely your child will adjust easily.


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#5 of 12 Old 05-15-2013, 12:56 PM
 
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My DS transitioned from formula to cow's milk at a year, with no problems.  I think that the message that a one-year-old on formula is a racket by the formula companies to get you to spend more money!  That said, there's no real reason to go to cow's milk at all if he doesn't like it or has a sensitivity.  As long as he's eating a diverse range of food, he's getting adequate nutrition. 
 


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#6 of 12 Old 05-15-2013, 03:25 PM
 
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Originally Posted by askins View Post

My DS transitioned from formula to cow's milk at a year, with no problems.  I think that the message that a one-year-old on formula is a racket by the formula companies to get you to spend more money!  That said, there's no real reason to go to cow's milk at all if he doesn't like it or has a sensitivity.  As long as he's eating a diverse range of food, he's getting adequate nutrition. 

 
This is spot on. I recently had my2 year old at the dr's and the NP asked how much milk she drinks each day. I told her she has about a cup with cereal for breakfast. Well the NP made a big deal about how that's not enough but once I told her about all the yogurt and cheese this kid eats, not to mention how diverse her palette for meats/veggies/fruits is, she quickly stopped being concerned. And it just so happened that DD asked for and ate multiple slices of raw mushrooms not two minutes later, much to this lady's amazement. She's 85th or so percentile for height and weight, hair and nails growing and looking healthy and she's got a ton of energy. I think the only reason I'd keep a toddler on formula would be if they were really struggling with maintaining/gaining weight and had eating or nutrient absorption problems or other special needs related to nutrition.
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#7 of 12 Old 05-15-2013, 04:17 PM
 
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Correct me if I am wrong but formula IS cow's milk (unless it's soy)..... it's just fortified differently.

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#8 of 12 Old 05-15-2013, 08:25 PM
 
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I think if your child eats a reasonably varied diet it's fine to switch to cow's milk around age 1. Provided they don't have any issues with digesting cow's milk of course!

 

DD had formula till about 16 months or so. It wasn't 100% formula till then though, some of it was milk. She didn't start on milk very early as she didn't care for the taste so we kept on with the formula till she was more interested in milk. I don't think there's any need to rush the transition but I don't think giving milk is a bad thing either. If your baby doesn't have issues with it and eats pretty well (for a toddler), I'd probably switch when your stash runs out. I'd not worry about vitamin supplements either, but that's just me, I think they are over-hyped and largely unnecessary.

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#9 of 12 Old 05-16-2013, 11:25 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks for all your replies.  It's good to know I'm not the only one who thinks it's a bit OTT to give formula until 3yrs.  It's such a pain when we go back to the UK that we have to drag loads of formula with us.

 

I was thinking about kind of doing half and half for a few months while I use up my supply of formula.  Perhaps cows milk in the first or first and second bottle and then formula before she goes to bed.  I think for her age she has to have at least 500ml of milk a day, sometimes she flat out refuses a bottle but most times she is over that.  In addition to those bottles she has a few spoons of oatmeal made with rice milk in the morning.  About 60g potato/pasta/rice, 20g meat or fish, 120g vegetables for lunch (one meat and fish free day per week) then 200g fruit and a baby biscuit at 4pm, then a sandwich with just butter and blocks of cheese at around 6pm (she doesn't finish the sandwich).

 

I will probably give vitamin D drops.  I gave it when I was breastfeeding because they said if babe has less than 500ml of formula a day they need it.  Can you have too much Vit D?  Would it be harmful then?  The only meat DD has is chicken, that's quite a good source or iron isn't it?  I might go and talk to our pharmacist, she is usually really reasonable and spends plenty of time explaining the best options.

 

I don't eat any dairy products because they give me really bad hormonal acne, I also didn't when I was pregnant but I did when I was breastfeeding to get my strength up so I hope that won't make her more likely to be allergic.

 

I will have to play it cool at the health visitors office because they always strike the fear of god into me.  They always ask what she drinks so I will have to be frugal with the truth!  I was in for it last week because I said 'hey I started brushing DD's teeth twice a day but on the back of the toothpaste (special correct fluoride toothpaste) it says to do it once a day, when is she old enough to brush twice a day'.  Wow you would think I said that I fed her cheeseburgers every day.  I made matters worse by stating that I had bought her sandals (sturdy good brand sandals) for the summer.
 

Thanks for the advice innocent.gif


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#10 of 12 Old 05-16-2013, 01:27 PM
 
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Originally Posted by graciegal View Post

Correct me if I am wrong but formula IS cow's milk (unless it's soy)..... it's just fortified differently.

That is correct. It is usually broken down more, the why part to make it easier to digest, but yes it is cow milk.


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#11 of 12 Old 05-20-2013, 12:55 PM
 
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Originally Posted by clairebear3 View Post

I will probably give vitamin D drops.  I gave it when I was breastfeeding because they said if babe has less than 500ml of formula a day they need it.  Can you have too much Vit D?  Would it be harmful then?  The only meat DD has is chicken, that's quite a good source or iron isn't it?  I might go and talk to our pharmacist, she is usually really reasonable and spends plenty of time explaining the best options.

 

 

The human body will make vitamin D when exposed to the sun.  Usually docs recommend giving tiny breastfed babies vitamin D because we are now instructed to keep them and their delicate skin out of the sun when they are brand new.  As a toddler, your DD probably gets outside to play or walk with you a fair bit, and so she's manufacturing her own vitamin D.  I wouldn't worry about it. 

 

Dark leafy greens like spinach and kale are also a great source of iron - you don't need to rely solely on meat!  Chicken has some iron, but really red meat is a much richer source.  Still, if she's getting a nice compliment of veggies and legumes, I wouldn't worry too much.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by graciegal View Post

Correct me if I am wrong but formula IS cow's milk (unless it's soy)..... it's just fortified differently.

 

It's based on cow's milk, but the proteins are broken down for ease of digestion/absorption.  So it's a little more than "just fortified differently."  But you are correct that it comes from cow's milk.


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#12 of 12 Old 05-20-2013, 12:59 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Well we get outside quite a bit but there's no sun to be seen at the moment!

 

I was going to start giving her cows milk for her morning bottle but she just didn't like it so I'm gradually introducing it, I make 150ml of formula instead of 210ml and then top it up with cows milk.  So far she seems to like it so over the next few weeks I will gradually add more cows milk.
 


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