Which baby formula do you need?
There are so many different brands of infant formula, and your baby's nutrition is important, so which one should you choose? Here are the thoughts from a mother of three.
Many parents may have the initial instinct to stick with the name brands and their shouts of "DHA and ARA" on the labels. Some may compare calories on the back of the canister. Since my son was using formula much more than his sisters did, I asked my pediatrician what he thought about brands. His take on the formula situation is that most of the store brand formulas are actually made in the same factories as the name brands, so you should not let name affect your decision. Most of the different brands have negligible differences in nutrition, so it really comes down to price and your child's personal preference.
With my son, we used four different brands of formula to supplement my breastmilk in his first year: Similac, Enfamil, Kirkland Signature and Safeway's generic Mom2Mom brand.
The best formulas we've tried
- Enfamil Lipil with Iron: This was the first and most expensive of the brands we tried, but my son liked it enough that we stuck with it for nine months. He did not spit up very much with this, and it didn't have the nauseating smell (to me) that many formulas have. Enfamil also offers Enfamil Easy One Sticks, which are great for taking along on day trips, or just keeping on hand in the diaper bag.
- Similac Advance with Early Shield: This was the second brand we tried, which is the best "name brand" deal when purchasing at Costco. My son liked this one, but it had a slightly stronger smell, he tended to spit up a little with it, and he only liked it at certain temperatures. Compared to Enfamil, this offers the benefits of being less expensive and coming in a great container that can be re-used for storage.
- Safeway's Mom2Mom: While relatively inexpensive, at about $15 for a can, this was the most disgusting of the brands that we tried. Beginning with the powdered sugar-like consistency and extremely strong smell, this one was a turn-off. My son did not care for it very much, and he definitely spit up more with it (which smelled stronger than spit up from breastmilk or other formulas).
- Kirkland Signature Infant Formula with DHA and ARA: This was the winner of the bunch. Comparing the nutritional information on the back of the package, this falls in line with Enfamil and Similac. In addition to that, it is generally odor-free, we experienced no spit up with it, and my son LOVED it so much that he refused Enfamil afterwards when my husband tried to give him the last "Easy One Stick." At a basic price of about $18 for two 25 ounce cans at Costco, this is the best economic deal by far. Given that my son loved it so much, I would just start the search here, if you are trying out formula brands.
Joined:Nov 26, 2007
Caffeine-addicted, Phineas and Ferb lovin' bibliophile
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