Most parents that use baby formula immediately choose cow milk formula for their babies. This is the standard and most widely available formula for parents to choose. But did you know goat milk formula has been the upcoming and popular choice for parents?
Many parents of newborns are curious as to why so many others have made the switch to a goat milk formula. Here we discuss why goat milk is a great option for your baby and reasons as to why you may want to switch your baby to this popular baby formula.
What is Goat Milk Formula?
Just like cow’s milk formula, goat’s milk formula is produced specifically for your developing baby in each stage they are in. You may be aware that the amount of nutrients necessary for your baby’s first year varies depending on the diets, so as you introduce foods into their diet, their formula content should change.
If you are familiar with European baby formulas, you may already know that they specifically design formulas in two different stages during that first year of life, something that is uncommon in American formulas.
Unfortunately, goat milk formula is not available on the shelves at your local grocery store for babies less than one year old. In Europe, the practice of using goat’s milk in the first year is widely accepted and there are a few well-known brands that have amazing products Americans can purchase (through a verified retailer).
Goat’s milk vs Cow’s Milk
Understanding the components of goat’s milk, in comparison to cow’s milk really helps parents know what makes goat milk a great option for their baby formula. Here is a breakdown of these similarities and differences:
- Vitamins and Minerals
- Goat’s milk has 13% more calcium, 25% more vitamin B6, 47% more vitamin A, 135% more potassium, and 3x more niacin.
- Goat’s milk has 27% more selenium than cow’s milk
- Cow’s milk has 5x as much B12
- Cow’s milk has 10x as much folic acid
- Goat’s milk is naturally composed of the A2 protein – which is easier to digest. The A1 protein can be problematic for babies, so having an alternative is great.
- Goat’s milk protein creates a softer, looser curd, allowing the gut to process the nutrients faster and decrease irritability.
- Most cow’s milk protein has the A1 protein, which produces the peptide BCM-7. This peptide is absorbed in the intestines and passed into the blood. Doctors have linked stomach issues and other lactose intolerant symptoms to the A1 protein from cow’s milk.
- Goat’s milk has less lactose than cow’s milk (4.1% compared to 4.7% in cow’s milk).
Why Switch your Baby to Goat Milk?
The most common reason parents are switching to goat milk formula is because their baby is sensitive to the cow milk formula. As discussed above, the goat milk formula has a different structure than the cow milk and it is easier to digest on babies. Plus, goat’s milk is a healthy option.
Many parents have sensitive babies, especially since the baby’s digestive system is still developing in the early months of their first year. As such, processing the cow’s milk protein can be more difficult. This is why some formulas have reduced lactose content or hydrolyzed lactose proteins – like HA formulas. Plus, formulas like HiPP HA add prebiotics and probiotics to further aid in the digestion.
Unfortunately, all these advancements in the formula options don’t always help, and parents are left with very few alternative options that avoid cow’s lactose. In this case, trying a different mammal, such as a goat, is an excellent option. The formulas that completely lack lactose, such as soy-based formulas, have less similarities to breastmilk. As such, parents should avoid using them unless absolutely necessary.
Goat’s milk may be the best option for your sensitive baby, especially if cow’s milk has been causing discomfort. It’s great that formula manufacturers have uncovered a new mammal’s milk to use as an alternative, as there is so much controversy in formulas that contain soy or higher levels of vegetable oils and sugars to try and make up for the loss of lactose.
No matter what option you choose, your baby will appreciate the hard work and research you did trying to find the perfect formula for them. Give yourself a break if it takes a while, parenting is no easy feat!