How to buy baby formula
A baby formula buying guide
When it comes to searching for the best baby formula for your child, it is important to consider all your baby's needs to make a useful comparison of what's on the market. You must be just as careful choosing how to buy baby formula as you are in other aspects of baby and childcare.
>> Determine which form of baby formula you need
As you determine which baby formula is good for your baby, consider powder formula, ready-to-feed liquid and concentrated liquid. Some parents might prefer the convenience of ready-to-use liquid formula; others might want a formula that lasts longer in storage, such as powder formulas. Infant milk powder has a long shelf life and does not need refrigeration, making it suitable for traveling or for buying larger quantities of the best baby formula. Ready-to-use liquid is easy for mixing and is quicker when you have an urgent need for fast preparation. Liquid concentrate requires mixing, much like powder, but is more sterile and does not require the careful handling that powder does.
>> Consider any special dietary needs
When considering the types of baby formula, think about the dietary needs of your baby to figure out which baby formula is good for the baby. Baby formulas come with many varieties of ingredients to accommodate different diet preferences. Many parents choose baby feeding kosher or organic formula for religious and health reasons, whereas sugar-free, lactose-free and soy-based baby formulas are favored primarily to address health concerns. Your baby's dietary needs will determine the best baby formula for your child.
>> Consider your baby's sensitivity
A primary factor in determining which baby formula is good for your child is how sensitive the baby is and how he or she might react to the formula. A common issue with babies is spitting up. You want to find a baby formula for your child that reduces spit up. Babies can also have skin sensitivity, acid reflex, allergies or lactose intolerance as a result of baby formula. Because babies respond differently to different baby formulas, try several formulas to determine your child's preference.
>> Consider the ingredients and nutrition
Ingredients and nutrition are important aspects of choosing which baby formula is good for your baby. As you consider which nutrients you want your baby to ingest, look for formula with calcium, ingredients that closely match breast milk and nutrients that stimulate brain and eye growth.
>> Consider whether you will use the formula at home or on the road
Depending on if you find yourself on the road or at home most frequently, consider baby formulas packaged to meet your needs. Many formulas are packaged in easy-to-use baby bottles made for portability. Other formulas are packaged with home storage in mind. The best baby formula for your baby might depend on where you will use it.
>> What is the age of your baby?
Baby products are designed with age groups in mind. Be sure to pick the best baby formula in the age range of your baby to ensure that he or she can digest it properly. Although older babies can digest formula meant for younger children, some formulas better accommodate an older baby's nutritional needs.
>> Determine the quantity you need
Determining the best baby formula depends on the quantities you need. You can find toddler formulas in both small and large quantities. If you need something quick while you are on the road or if you would like to try samples for your baby, buy smaller quantities or baby formula packaged in smaller containers. You can find small containers in baby feeding gift sets or on sale during baby feeding specials. Larger quantities are good for keeping on your shelf to ensure that you always have formula available. You might prefer a bundle of individual baby bottles if you want the convenience of small containers, or you might prefer a larger quantity that can be dispensed by baby formula dispensers.
>> Consider clinical studies of the formula
Consider professional opinions when figuring out how to buy baby formula. Many companies perform clinical studies of their baby formulas to ensure that the formulas are healthy. Third-party organizations such as the National Institutes of Health and the Food and Drug Administration also perform studies. Research done by these organizations can help you determine which baby formula is good for your baby.