When it comes to formula for toddlers, many parents sit on the fence, unsure if they should feed their toddler formula milk or move to regular milk from the onset. For new mums, it’s often much easier to give their child infant formula, especially if they are working.
However, as with anything else, there are pros and cons to giving formula to your toddler. Keep reading to find out what they are and how they may relate to your experience.
1. Toddler Formula Is an Added Source of Nutrition
Pro: Toddlers are notorious for rejecting veggies, thus missing essential nutrients. Toddler formula provides an easy source of nutrition for picky toddlers, keeping your little one healthy and satiated.
If you’re weighing up the benefits of toddler formula vs infant formula, it’s generally better to opt for the latter once your child is over 12 months of age. Toddler formula is more nutritionally robust. However, it’s worth consulting your pediatrician before making decisions about your child’s nutrition.
Con: If the formula keeps your child full and satisfied, this might make them reluctant to try anything else, especially those veggies.
2. You May Feel Equal Parts Guilt and Relief
Pro: Giving your child toddler formula feels good because you know they’re satiated and getting the nutrients they need. Formula is also convenient and easy to make.
Con: On the other hand, you may feel a pang of mom guilt for not giving your little one more. That’s perfectly normal. The most important thing to remember when you experience this is that you’re doing your best and taking parenthood one day at a time.
3. Formula Is Designed to Support Brain Development
Pro: Most toddler formula contains DHA, an omega-3 fatty acid that is highly beneficial for the brain. DHA supports cognitive function and can be particularly helpful for premature babies.
Con: Many critics argue that there’s no solid evidence connecting toddler formula with better brain health. Ultimately, it’s up to you as a parent to decide what’s best for your child.
4. Toddler Formula Can Help with Weaning
Pro: Marketing for toddler formula usually centers on its nutritional value, which is what makes it a fantastic option for moms who can no longer breastfeed. Moving on to formula can also be a great way to wean your child from breast milk when you get to that point.
Con: Some parents argue that toddlers can still grow up to be healthy without consuming formula in between breast milk and regular milk. It’s also important to remember that it might be just as challenging to wean your child off formula as breast milk. So, you may just be delaying the struggle by switching to formula.
5. You Can Supplement with Formula
Pro: If your child is accustomed to toddler formula, then you can rely on it to keep them satiated when breastmilk or regular milk is not available.
Con: Depending on where you are, it may, in fact, be easier to get your hands on cow’s milk rather than formula milk.
6. An Alternative to Milk for Vegan Parents
Pro: Vegan parents often worry about their ability to provide their children with optimal nutrition, especially when it comes to milk. Thankfully, soy-based formula can provide your child with the protein they need to grow strong and the taste of milk they love.
Cons: Soy milk formula can be harder to find. If that’s the case, look online or in local health shops and specialty stores for accessible soy milk formula.
Consider the pros and cons listed above, and consult your pediatrician before making a decision on whether to give your child toddler formula.