For all the uncertainties surrounding the human diet, that babies are supposed to drink milk is one of the few things almost everyone can agree on. That this milk should be breast milk should also be a given, but unfortunately it isn’t. Although most literature put out by formula manufacturers starts out by saying that breast milk is best, up to seventy percent of American babies receive baby formula. And of those that are breastfed, the duration for doing so is often much shorter now than at any point in history.
Most commercial baby formulas are either cow milk or soy based. While improvements in manufacturing have made formula more closely resemble breast milk, the end result is still a far inferior product. The oils used — usually a blend of oils — often contain some heavily processed oils, such as soy oil.
Beth Montgomery wrote in, Introducing Living Foods to Your Child: Guidebook for Babies through Two Years:
Have you ever looked at the ingredients on the back of a formula can? The ingredients of a major name brand, lacto-free formula, are: #1 Corn Syrup #2 Oils (several different types). Ingredients are listed by order of quantity. The highest quantity ingredient in the formula is corn syrup, only to be followed by oil!
Now you know those vitamins and minerals we parents buy the formula for? We buy the promise that our babies are being given balanced nutrition. The label lists them directly after the corn syrup and oil, but only after the statement: “contains less than 2% of the following.”
Do you realize this means that 98% of the infant formula that costs $10 a can is SUGAR and OIL??? Less than 2% of the formula is vitamins and minerals. These vitamins aren’t even in their natural form. They are synthetic and sprayed into powder. We pay dearly with both our pocketbooks and our children’s health.
When children are weaned off of formula and they are eating only one or two different foods, pediatricians will usually tell you not to worry about supplements. although your child is not getting a balanced diet, supplements for babies less than one year old are not advised. I was told there is actually no dosing information for children under a year old. Now, I ask you this, if there is no dosing information available, how do the formula manufacturers know the right amounts of minerals and vitamins to add to the formula?
Also, how can I be doing damage if I give my baby living, whole foods rather than processed sugar and oil sprayed with vitamins? I have confronted my doctor’s office with these questions and when I stated that formula can’t be good for my child because of the ingredients, they could only tell me that my baby was healthy because he was in the top percentage for his weight. Hereby my “ding-dong” argument was formed. If 95% of what I ate was Hostess Ding-Dongs sprayed with vitamins, I too would at least be in the top percentile for weight, but would it mean I was healthy? Take your children’s health into your own hands. Feed them living-foods.
It must be understood that the sugar and oils in breast milk come in an living, organic form, which also includes living enzymes, vitamins, hormones, and antibodies tailored to meet the needs of a human baby. The sugar and oils in baby formula are heavily processed and devitalized, and if the formula is cow milk based, any hormones that manage to survive the processing are hormones meant for a baby calf. Furthermore, if the baby formula is soy based, soy is one of the most heavily processed foods in the human diet, often containing traces of harsh chemicals used to make soy — which is not suitable as food for humans in its unprocessed form — edible and which also has naturally occurring, powerful phyto-estrogens, which can impair thyroid function and even affect sexual development.
It has been known for years that bottle fed babies are sick more often than breastfed babies and have a higher mortality rate. In addition, more recently, it has been demonstrated that due to the human body’s developing antibodies to foreign proteins in cow’s milk, the risk of diabetes in children increases greatly, especially in children who may be predisposed to diabetes. The reason this happens is not totally clear yet, but scientists speculate that the baby’s immune system creates antibodies when exposed to foreign insulin in cow’s milk, and these antibodies play a role in an autoimmune response that turns the baby’s immune system against the cells in the pancreas gland which produce insulin — leading to Type 1 diabetes.
Cow’s milk may also contribute to diabetes because it is also a factor in obesity — a known risk factor for diabetes. Recent studies at the University of Glasgow and Glasgow Caledonian University, in which 32,200 Scottish children were monitored, found that those breastfed during infancy were thirty percent less likely to become obese as children. While again, the reasons for this are not yet fully known, one reason may be that many baby formulas contain corn syrup or sugar for the carbohydrate, which may lead the child to favor sugary foods. Another reason may be that cow’s milk contains a growth hormone identical to a human’s growth hormone — only the hormone in cow’s milk is designed to turn a baby calf into a 700-pound-plus cow.
Humans are the only species that drinks the milk of another species and the only species that continues to drink milk after weaning. Given that many of the reasons people drink milk — calcium for instance — are actually negated by the pasteurization process, which renders many of the nutrients in milk much less absorbable by the human body, the problems that make cow’s milk unsuitable for adults, such as lactose intolerance, also holds true for children. Even if somehow cow’s milk could be demonstrated to be the good food it is portrayed to be by those who profit from selling it, there are still the issues of the way the cows that produce much of our milk are raised: the improper foods they are fed, the antibiotics they are given because their living conditions and food make them sick, and the hormones they are given to increase milk production — all of which effect the quality of or actually show up in the cow’s milk.
Many mothers are just not given all the facts on this issue. And of those that are presented the true facts, many will reason that bottle feeding “just can’t be that bad,” because, after all, either they or other family members were bottle fed, and they “turned out just fine.” It must be kept in mind that bottle feeding, on the scale it is happening here in America, is a relatively new development in human history and all the consequences may not be known for many more years. As it stands now, the federal government is issuing warnings that adult-onset diabetes is reaching epidemic proportions in increasingly younger Americans, and it could be years before the role, if any, bottle feeding is playing in that epidemic is firmly established.
If the known facts are not enough to deter someone from bottle feeding, then the unknown should also be considered. The fact is that God created the perfect food for babies, and it is human folly to think we can duplicate it. Fifty years-plus after bottle feeding came in vogue, with all of our technology and know-how, scientist are still discovering vital components of breast milk that are missing from baby formula, and it will be many more years before some of them will be approved to be incorporated into baby formula, if at all, and other elements — the living components — are irreproducible by science. And with each new discovery, little is mentioned of all the children who were deprived of those vital elements during one of the most critical developmental phases of their lives.