When I had to make the tough decision to supplement with baby formula, I was in shock by the ingredients in what’s available to us. There aren’t a lot of options in the US, unfortunately.
After looking into every baby formula possible. I decided that German formulas were right for us. Specifically, the Hipp brand formula. (This post is not sponsored).
Europe’s FDA ( The European Commission ), has a rule that there be no detectable levels of pesticide residue (like in zilch, zero). The farming practices and quality control over there are VERY different, the cows are ONLY grass-fed, and are organic. In the US you sometimes have to choose either grass-fed or organic, but you don’t get both. This is standard in Europe.
There are stages when it comes to European formulas. You can get two different stages, one from birth up until they can eat table food, and stage two after solid foods have been introduced up until the one year mark. Each stage has specific nutrients targeted for those stages in life. They even have a stage three for the ongoing toddler stage!
The FDA requires Infant formula’s to have 0.15-3.30 mg/100kcal of Iron, whereas European Commission requires Infant formula to have 0.3-1.3 mg/100kcal and the follow on formula to have 0.6-1.7 mg/100kcal. So if you happen to be using the European formula, once they move to the second stage you would just focus on adding more iron rich foods to their diet.
European formulas have less additives in their formulas, as well as sugars! I use Hipp brand (a formula from Germany) because the sugars in Hipp are from lactose, which is naturally occuring in cows milk. Hipp also includes probiotics for gut health. They are also newly required to add DHA to their formulas, something a formula fed baby would need to be supplemented, otherwise. Single amino acids such as phenylalanine, tryptophan, and tyrosine are also added to the EU companies formulas… all key parts to a growing brain.
Lastly, the EU has more soy-free options which is great! Soy has been linked to cancer, thyroid issues, and genetically modified organisms. Meaning soy does not occur naturally and that is a whole other issue. GMO’s have been linked to illnesses that cannot be treated by antibiotics.
The choice to use German formulas was an easy one for me. The best part is the the pricing is comparable to US formula prices, so you don’t have to spend more for a quality product. In AZ, Modern Milk now carries German brand formulas, but if you’re not local, you can find them online here.