Give your baby the best start
- Newborns have immature immune and digestive systems.
- Breastfeeding helps promote digestive and immune system development.
- What you need to know about protein in formula.
- Choosing a formula for immune support and digestive benefits.
Your newborn is growing quickly, and her digestive and immune systems are developing. What you feed your baby from the start may make a difference in supporting digestive health and the development of a healthy immune system.
Breastfeeding—the gold standard
Breastfeeding provides clear immune-related advantages. Breastmilk contains a perfect balance of nutrients, as well as antibodies to help protect your baby. It’s also the ideal food for babies, as the proteins are easily digested and also help support the developing immune system of infants. In addition, breastmilk helps reduce the risk that a child develops an allergy. This is partially because the proteins in breastmilk are unlikely to trigger allergic reactions.
Immune system support
Both the size and type of protein make a difference when you’re choosing your baby’s first formula. Babies can be sensitive to large, “foreign” proteins, like cow and soy milk proteins found in infant formulas.
Did you know?
Studies have shown babies can be sensitive to cow’s milk proteins by receiving less than one bottle of whole-protein formula in their first week of life.
The larger the protein, the more likely your baby’s immune system will recognize it as a problem. Some infant formulas contain proteins that are hydrolyzed—or broken into smaller pieces. Smaller proteins, like those found in 100% whey protein partially hydrolyzed infant formulas, are less likely to trigger protein sensitization.
Atopic dermatitis (AD)— an allergic skin rash—can sometimes be a result of protein sensitization. AD is the most common allergic disease in infancy. As many as 1 in 5 infants develop AD by six months of age. Studies have shown that the choice of infant formula can help reduce the risk of developing atopic dermatitis.*
Did you know?
Only one infant formula
meets the FDA criteria for a qualified health claim for the relationship between 100% whey protein partially hydrolyzed infant formula and a reduced risk of atopic dermatitis.*
Digestive system support
Cow milk-based infant formulas are made of casein and/or whey. Whey protein is a high-quality protein and offers several benefits:
- Whey forms fewer or smaller curds, or possibly none at all during digestion.**
- Easy to digest.
- Supports the formation of soft stools, similar to a breastfed baby.
100% whey proteins that have been partially hydrolyzed offer unique digestive and protective benefits for your baby when fed from the start.
* “For healthy infants who are not exclusively breastfed and who have a family history of allergy, feeding a 100% whey protein partially hydrolyzed infant formula from birth up to 4 months of age, instead of a formula containing intact cow’s milk proteins may reduce the risk of developing atopic dermatitis throughout the first year of life. FDA has concluded that the relationship between 100% whey protein partially hydrolyzed infant formulas and the reduced risk of atopic dermatitis is uncertain, because there is little scientific evidence for the relationship. Partially hydrolyzed formulas should not be fed to infants who are allergic to milk or to infants with existing milk allergy symptoms. If you suspect your baby is already allergic to milk, or if your baby is on a special formula for the treatment of allergy, your baby's care and feeding choices should be under a doctor's supervision.”
** Curd formation is not related to the body’s ability to absorb and utilize proteins.
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