Lactose Free Formula
For infants with lactose intolerance, lactose-free baby formula can be used. Some babies may have difficulty digesting lactose, which is a sugar found in milk. A lactose-free formula can be helpful for babies.
What is Lactose-Free Baby Formula?
The lactose-free infant formula is made from cow’s milk and is specially processed to eliminate lactose. To make it easier to digest for babies with lactose intolerance, manufacturers replace lactose with another carbohydrate such as corn syrup.
These formulas do not suit babies who have a cow’s-milk allergy. CMA and lactose intolerance are two distinct issues. However, they can share symptoms like diarrhoea, tender stomachs, gas, and fussiness.
Nestle Science states that CMA is an immune reaction and lactose intolerance a digestive problem. CMA-prone babies would be better off using hypoallergenic or soy-based baby formula.
There are many options for lactose-free formulas, low-lactose formulas, and non-dairy substitutes available in the U.S. Parents should talk to their paediatrician to ensure that the right formula is chosen for their baby. This is especially important if they have a galactosemia condition or need preemie formula.
Similac baby formulas have become some of the most loved in the U.S. Similac Sensitive is one of their lactose-free formulas, while Similac Alimentum is another. These formulas are made from milk and are suitable for lactose-intolerant infants.
Abbott Laboratories, the maker of Similac, issued a baby-food recall in February 2022 to address possible bacterial contamination in Similac products made in Sturgis, Michigan. You should check the Similac recall list if you have purchased Similac baby formula or are planning to buy it.
Another popular brand is Enfamil baby formula, which Mead Johnson makes. Enfamil NeuroPro Sensitive and Enfamil A+ Lactose-Free are two lactose-free products. Enfamil NeuroPro uses corn sugar as a substitute carbohydrate.
Similac brands were not recalled in recent years, but Enfamil brands were.
Alternatives to Lactose-Free Dairy Products
Parents and caregivers might choose lactose-free dairy options. These are made without cow’s milk and are naturally free from lactose. These are better for babies with lactose intolerance or cow’s milk allergies.
These formulas can be made from soy, rice, or other plant-based protein. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration regulates the sale of formulas in the United States. They have the same nutritional value as milk-based formulas from cow’s milk. Enfamil Simply Plant-Based and Gerber Good Start Gentle Soy are two examples.
Low-lactose formulas have lower levels of lactose but can contain higher levels than lactose-free brands. Many popular formulas are in the low-lactose group.
Similac 360 Total Car Care Sensitive has 98% less Lactose than Similac Total, while Enfamil A+ Gentlease is low-lactose and not lactose-free.
A baby who might use a lactose-free formula
Only babies with lactose intolerance or a diagnosis of it should be given lactose-free formulas. Regular cow’s milk formula is a good choice for most babies. This is what paediatricians recommend.
Lactose-free formulas should not be used by babies suffering from cow’s milk allergies. These formulas still contain milk protein and milk, which can cause allergic reactions in CMA infants. Breastfeeding mothers with lactose-intolerant babies can continue to breastfeed. However, breastfeeding mothers with sensitive babies should avoid dairy products.
Parents and caregivers should not assume that a fussy baby suffers from lactose intolerance. They should consult their doctor before making any assumptions. Babies with lactose intolerance are very rare among children under 5 years old.
Possible side effects of lactose-free baby formula
The side effects of the lactose-free formula are the same as those of regular formula. They are often related to formula contamination or digestion. Colic, loose stool and bloating are some of the symptoms.
Crying, fatigue, fever, and poor nutrition are signs of a bacterial infection caused by contaminated formula.
Side effects of lactose can cause severe reactions in babies with galactosemia or cow’s-milk allergy. These babies are best served by formulas made from plants that are naturally lactose-free.
Formulas made from cow’s milk, even those that are lactose-free, can increase the risk of necrotizing Enterocolitis (or NEC) in premature babies. NEC, a rare and potentially fatal disease that causes the intestinal tissue to stop functioning, is extremely rare. After their children died from NEC, some parents filed Similac or Enfamil baby-food lawsuits.