Your Crawler’s digestive system

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  • Avoid cow’s milk until at least a year of age.
  • Cow’s milk is low in vitamins and nutrients that support healthy growth and development.
  • Three meals and three snacks are the preferred plan.

Your Crawler is well on his way to enjoying a variety of foods with different flavors and textures. While his foods are contributing nutrition to his diet, they also serve the important function of teaching him how to eat and how to self-feed. But one food he’s not ready for at the Crawler stage is cow’s milk. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends avoiding cow’s milk until your baby is at least a one-year-old. Here’s why:

Digestive system
Protein is too high in cow milk for a baby at the Crawler stage to digest.

Kidneys
Large amounts of protein, Sodium and Potassium found in cow’s milk put unnecessary stress on your baby’s growing kidneys.

Brain
Iron is needed for your baby’s brain to develop properly and for growth. Not only does cow’s milk not provide the Iron your Crawler needs, but the use of cow’s milk during the first year of life is associated with Iron deficiency. DHA and ARA are two fatty acids that support both brain and eye development. They are not found naturally in cow’s milk, but are added to infant formula.

Growth and development
Cow’s milk is low in vitamins and nutrients that support healthy growth and development—like Vitamins C and E.

What else affects digestion?
Knowing your baby’s tummy size makes it easier to understand why he needs small portions. Your Crawler’s stomach can hold a maximum of 9 oz. of food and breastmilk or formula at any one meal or snack. Compare that to an adult stomach that can hold up to 42 oz. of food and liquid! He’s getting more active, so three meals and three snacks are the preferred plan, but always let his hunger and fullness cues be your guide. 

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